How many plug-ins is too many?

I’ve seen a number of discussions recently which consider how many plug-ins you should be using on your website. The question seemed to be whether people preferred a few large all encompassing plug-ins or smaller specific item plug-ins?

There is no straightforward answer to this question, but there are a few issues have become more apparent as the number of plug-ins used increases.

Firstly, more plug-ins you use, the more chance there could be a conflict between any of them. They could require different jQuery libraries or conflicting CSS. Also, more plug-ins need maintenance and updating from each of their creators and the greater the chance one will not be kept up-to-date.

Secondly, plug-ins will often use their own CSS and JavaScript code. If you are using a loss of plug-ins, then the number of individual JavaScript and CSS files can be quite big. This can bring an issue of the response speed of the website. It is often not the size of the CSS and JavaScript files that cause problems but rather the number requests required to collect all the CSS and JavaScript files. And so this is a good argument for reducing the number plug-ins you use all looking to code a number of them together.