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Is there a tool I can show clients that will take a page's HTML and show:
a) the order in which external resources will load,
b) which resources are blocked on other resources being downloaded?

For example: JavaScript in the head blocks any images from loading further down the page and browsers can only load 6 resources at a time from a given domain/subdomain.

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4 Answers 4

up vote 7 down vote accepted

There's a bunch of tools that illustrate the waterfall (the cascading chain of HTTP requests from the browser to the server):

Also, note that your point:

...browsers can only load 6 resources at a time...

is not quite correct, while 6 is the average number of concurrent connections to a single server as at mid 2011 (see here), this number has increased since and doesn't account for domain sharding which can increase the total number of connections by around 10x.

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try yslow extention it might be useful

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The Network and Timeline tabs of Chrome's developer tools show when and how long it takes to load individual page components.

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Try http://pingdom.com and http://gtmetrix.com/ are best according to me

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