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Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

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  • Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

    My system is a P3 Compaq with Windows 98. When I have A5 loaded and am in another
    program (e.g MS Word) I can feel and see a response slowdown. The CPU Usage
    sensor on my Norton System Doctor is 100%! The only other thing that has this effect on my system are some animated ads on the net.

    Has anyone else experienced this?


  • #2
    RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

    Check CPU Usage FAQ -- tom


    • #3
      RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

      Click on the Frequently Asked Questions link at the top of the page and check out the topic CPU Usage. I think you will find some answers there. And yes, this is not abnormal on computers with somewhat limited resources. Contrary to what Microxxxx wants you to believe, running multiple programs at the same time can really slow a computer down.



      • #4
        RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

        Thanks for the help re cpu usage faq but I am not a power user, what is a "command line argument?" Also, are there hardware upgrades that can help, eg more memory?



        • #5
          RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

          Hi Stephen,

          You didn't mention your CPU clock speed and how much RAM is in your machine. The biggest contributor to slowing down the performance is lack of sufficient memory.
          Typically if your CPU is at least 500 Mhz and your RAM is greater than 128 Mbytes
          (I use 512) you should be okay unless your data tables are very large.

          Another point to establish is how your opening table and menu are established. Tom
          Cone finally embedded in my dumbkopf head about the use of a dummy table for navigating throughout your application. My menus now are based on the dummy table
          and all buttons used to advance to another table or whatever are all closed first.
          A good check on whether everything is properly closed is to exit (the "X" in the top right corner) and note whether you went directly to the CP. If you need to close more than once, then whatever came up was not closed properly.



          • #6
            RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?


            Create a Windows shortcut to the Alpha program. Right click on the shortcut and select properties. Assuming the program is installed in the default location, you should see the following command line in the box called Target;

            "C:\Program Files\A5V5\alpha5.exe"

            To eliminate the dbcheck, change the line to read

            "C:\Program Files\A5V5\alpha5.exe" -NODBCHECK

            I have two shortcuts to the Alpha5V5 program, one with the first shortcut command and a second with the second command line and the shortcut renamed as "Alpha Five V 5.0 No Check". Actually, I have found no problems running without the check in most circumstances and the CPU usage dropped from 95 to 100% to a more reasonable 25 to 35%

            Adding memory will help with some issues, particularly if the problem is from multiple programs holding memory, but won't have any real effect on CPU usage. I am currently running A5V5 on one computer with a 300 mhz PentiumII with only 64 meg of RAM and Win98. With the NODBCHECK command, I can open one or two other programs and not see any real slowdown, even in design mode in A5V5. But no matter how much RAM you have, you can get into trouble eventually. I use another computer with 640 meg of RAM and I can lock that one up if I open enough memory intensive programs.

            By the way, Microxxxx I think still recommends rebooting at least once a day to clear locked memory with Win98 and WinME since both do a fairly lousy job of releasing memory when it isn't used anymore.



            • #7
              RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?

              From Alpha - Development or runtime - go to tools, create shortcut. Choose the options that you want and a shortcut is placed on your desktop.
              Al Buchholz
              Bookwood Systems, LTD
              Weekly QReportBuilder Webinars Thursday 1 pm CST

              Occam's Razor - KISS
              Normalize till it hurts - De-normalize till it works.
              Advice offered and questions asked in the spirit of learning how to fish is better than someone giving you a fish.
              When we triage a problem it is much easier to read sample systems than to read a mind.
              "Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler."
              Albert Einstein



              • #8
                RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?


                Thank you. -NODBCHECK works like a charm. According to Norton almost no CPU
                usage is detected and that is with netscape running. If there is a problem due to -NODBCHECK, how will it manifest it's self?

                Also, do you know how to get an A5 form to load in with the last search you made, not every record ever entered starting with the first!. I seem to remember this happened when I upgraded to 4.5.

                Thanks again.



                • #9
                  RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?


                  There was a very good thread on the message board a few months ago concerning this issue and Cian Chambliss of Alpha gave a good explanation of the issues. Search for "A5V5 CPU Usage in Win2000" (in quotes) and you will find the thread. The only real problem that might occur is that if you add a table to the database, it might now show until you close and reopen the database.

                  As for the second question, if you run a query on a table and then close the form and reopen, the query remains in effect when the form reopens, although it is lost when Alpha closes. However, if you run a find to get a record, that is not saved and closing a form will lose the pointer to that record. In this case, if you want to go back to the last record you viewed, you would need some method to capture the record number (or some record identifier) of that last record and use that captured record number to find the same record when the table is reopened. You could save it in a global variable or a special table. It is certainly possible, but might be a fair amount of work.



                  • #10
                    RE: Why does Alpha 5 Slow Down My Computer?


                    Thank you for the "Cian Chambliss" "-NODBCHECK" reference, intresting stuff. Re A5 not coming back to last query, I found the switch. It is on the tool bar under edit - setup - query. The program comes pre configured to erase the last query. If you un-check the box it works just fine.



                    • #11

                      I tried the a7.exe -nodbcheck. Worked great. I don't if that helped the load time also, but A5 starts in 8 seconds on my pc. Granted, its a P4 3.4 w/ 2 gigs of RAM, but I read here that some wait 33 seconds for A5 to start.