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Thread: Loading A5V11 very slow

  1. #1
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    Default Loading A5V11 very slow

    On this particular computer, loading the desktop took 45 seconds with V11. V10 was somewhat faster, maybe 30 seconds, and V7 took less than 10 seconds. This is without loading an app.

    Two questions. First, why is V11 so slow at loading the desktop? Second, what, if anything, can be done to speed up the loading time? Can it load, say, without the Web App and thereby save time? Are there any shortcuts to bringing up an app that would make the load time shorter? This is a situation where Alpha is brought up by the user only when needed for a quick data entry process but otherwise does not sit open on the desktop. Waiting almost one minute for this "quick hit" is problematic.

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I have noticed a huge difference in V11 load versus v8 load times. v11 takes much longer to load just the A5 shell. I too would like to know if there is a way to improve the load times.
    Andrew

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Jeff, I have the benefit af a SSD with V10.5 on it. The apps are on the traditional disks.
    A5 startup is about 3 seconds, app kick off in 2 seconds.
    Going through a Runtime, still just 5 seconds.
    With this setup, Windows 7 loads and is available in 20 seconds.
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I have a large app opening in V11 on SCSSI drives in about 3.5 seconds. The shadow takes maybe 5

    Sounds like the app is being screened, as from a Virus program. Need to exempt Alpha.
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I did try shutting off anti-virus, but that had no effect. The SSD sounds impressive, and I will eventually want to go that way, but my concern about loading time is more for the client who will need this, and I can't predict how each workstation will perform. I wonder if there is something more fundamental that can be done with A5V11 itself. One of the things I tried was getting more recent patches, but surprisingly there has been no update since June, so I already had June. No difference.

    This has nothing to do with the loading of the app. I'm timing it with just bringing up Alpha without an app. That's where the problem lies. The app loading doesn't add much at all.

    Normally this loading time of Alpha wouldn't be too much of a concern because in almost all cases, the only delay is that first start-up at the beginning of the day. However, in this particular case, the app serves a purpose only once in a while, when the user needs to perform a certain type of task. It will take a minute just to arrive at the starting screen and this will be embarrassing not just for me but for the image of Alpha Five.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    but surprisingly there has been no update since June
    No, but there is a nice and expensive Report Server.

    Jeff, if this is a seldom used app feature, is it possible to slim it down to the bare essentials and plug it into an existing instance?
    You could always swap databases and swap back again while Alpha is still running.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Giles View Post
    No, but there is a nice and expensive Report Server.

    Jeff, if this is a seldom used app feature, is it possible to slim it down to the bare essentials and plug it into an existing instance?
    You could always swap databases and swap back again while Alpha is still running.
    Bear in mind that I'm not talking about the loading time for the app but rather for A5V11. There would be no existing instance of Alpha running since the normal state is not to have Alpha loaded but just used once in a while, when the app is needed.

    Thanks.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Normally this loading time of Alpha wouldn't be too much of a concern because in almost all cases, the only delay is that first start-up at the beginning of the day.
    I took it that Alpha was started every morning. Then you could swap Db's
    If it's an on demand job, then I have no solution.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Giles View Post
    I took it that Alpha was started every morning. Then you could swap Db's
    If it's an on demand job, then I have no solution.
    It is an on-demand job.

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    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Does it need to be V11? Can it be done in V9?
    (Smaller footprint).
    If you want to share the code, I can build you a V9 runtime I suspect. (famous last words...)
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  11. #11
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Giles View Post
    Does it need to be V11? Can it be done in V9?
    (Smaller footprint).
    If you want to share the code, I can build you a V9 runtime I suspect. (famous last words...)
    I tried V9. It doesn't seem much, if any, faster than V11.

    The version that really works well is V7, which preceded the Windows Vista, 7, etc. platforms. Running in XP it performs very well. I have a client performing high-intensity order taking with several CSR's and V7 is the one I had to settle on. At first I tried to work with whatever was current at the time -- it might have been V9 or V10. It bombed completely. The order entry process came to a crawl and froze, and nothing I did to solve it worked. It was only by taking them back to V7 (where they were for the original app I re-wrote) that they have been performing steadily, efficiently, and flawlessly since (a couple years now). Even the original app that ran under V7, when I tried it with V8, 9, and 10, suffered from the same afflictions. I suspect that whatever code what added to make these version compatible with Vista, 7, etc. was not optimized well. Pity, since I would really like to be using the latest version of Alpha in all cases.

    By using V7, the question you may have is how I'm ever going to run it on a Windows 7 computer. Well, this was originally going to be a major problem since I had spent a long time developing the new app under the V9 or V10 Alpha, only to discover when I placed it in the production environment it bombed. I tried altering the server, the workstations, and anything else I could think of to get it working properly. Nothing. I had to re-write this very detailed, complex app back into the V7 version, which I discovered was the solution. It wasn't pretty re-doing every screen, button, etc. So how was I going to assure they wouldn't always be stuck with Windows XP? Windows 7 to the rescue. The virtual XP mode that is built in to Windows 7 Pro works fabulously. You can basically have Windows 7 environment for everything else and Windows XP for running this Alpha application. The Alpha application is really the main part of their operation, but most of the newer computers are Windows 7-based and many don't have drivers for XP, meaning you can't get the newer computer of your choice and put XP on it without potential issues. Windows XP mode under Windows 7 (and undoubtedly Windows 8) is the solution to continuing to use A5V7.

    With all this said, I may employ V7 for the app I currently have in V11. I just need to be sure that this client's environment will enable the running of XP mode (it's a Citrix Server, and I don't know too much about setting up under Citrix for the external users).

    That's my long explanation to your brief comment. I hope you and others can benefit from my XP mode experience.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I've used Citrix Presentation Server as a client in XP mode.
    Never had to set it up though.
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    If you are running A5V11 on XP, the slow load is caused by the loading of .NET 4.0. We have done a lot of optimizing to delay loading some elements until needed, but the full start make take awhile, especially with a slower processor typically found on an XP machine. Start up in Windows 7 is typically within a second or 2 of the start time for A5V10

  14. #14
    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    And if dot.net 4 is running? Does v11 create another instance?
    Ted Giles
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by JerryBrightbill View Post
    If you are running A5V11 on XP, the slow load is caused by the loading of .NET 4.0. We have done a lot of optimizing to delay loading some elements until needed, but the full start make take awhile, especially with a slower processor typically found on an XP machine. Start up in Windows 7 is typically within a second or 2 of the start time for A5V10
    So .NET is really the issue? Does it need to be loaded? I.e., does V11 only run, as a desktop only, if .NET is present?

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I tried my on-demand application using V11 and V7, just out of curiosity. It took 55 seconds to come up with V11. 6 seconds with V7. .NET or not, this is just not right -- major leaps backward in performance.

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    If you are planning on going back to previous versions, don't go to Version 7, go to Version 8 - it is MUCH faster than V7. And it's a solid program. Just remember that if they are on a W764 workstation, the reports can't be saved or printed to PDF, sime the amiuni converter won't work on W764 workstations.

    A better solution is to open alpha in citrix - then it will run like a chetah!! as long as you don't have any devices but a printer, will work well, and will be simple to set up - although you will need your IT guy to help you. I have several clients who all (locally OR remotely) run Alpha from T/S (think Citrix.)
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    the reports can't be saved or printed to PDF, sime the amiuni converter won't work on W764 workstations.
    Is this just V8 on Win 7/64 you are talking about Martin?
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by martinwcole View Post
    If you are planning on going back to previous versions, don't go to Version 7, go to Version 8 - it is MUCH faster than V7. And it's a solid program. Just remember that if they are on a W764 workstation, the reports can't be saved or printed to PDF, sime the amiuni converter won't work on W764 workstations.

    A better solution is to open alpha in citrix - then it will run like a chetah!! as long as you don't have any devices but a printer, will work well, and will be simple to set up - although you will need your IT guy to help you. I have several clients who all (locally OR remotely) run Alpha from T/S (think Citrix.)
    I previously did some comparisons using V8 along with V7. My experience at the time, related to an application with high volume data entry among several workstations, was that V7 worked well and V8 did not. It may be, in general, that V8 would work better overall, but I didn't have that experience. Also, V8 was the first to be usable with Vista but, as I recall, it doesn't work under Windows 7 (nor does V7, of course).

    I will be getting to trying this in Citrix, though it's a mixed environment with external users on Citrix but not internal users. If Citrix is the speed demon you're saying, I don't know that this client will go for moving the internal users onto Citrix.

    Thanks.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Jeff,
    we're running ver 10.5 here, and, in all honesty, it is the only version since 5 that showed us any reasonable comparison in speed to ver 5. We bought 6-9, and in testing, we found that our users (>200) would throw us off the roof if we attempted to use them. I am running a win7 Dell optiplex 790 system, and ver 10.5 alpha loaded in 2 seconds. This wasn't loading any specific application, just the Alpha developer's software.Our main application is shadowed and, it too, loads very fast. We don't use Citrix. Our data is stored on a Windows 2003 server with direct connections to a 100Mb switch.
    I really don't know if any of this helps you at all, but I wanted to let you know that there is at least one system out here that seems to run pretty well.

    Tom

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Henkel View Post
    Jeff,
    we're running ver 10.5 here, and, in all honesty, it is the only version since 5 that showed us any reasonable comparison in speed to ver 5. We bought 6-9, and in testing, we found that our users (>200) would throw us off the roof if we attempted to use them. I am running a win7 Dell optiplex 790 system, and ver 10.5 alpha loaded in 2 seconds. This wasn't loading any specific application, just the Alpha developer's software.Our main application is shadowed and, it too, loads very fast. We don't use Citrix. Our data is stored on a Windows 2003 server with direct connections to a 100Mb switch.
    I really don't know if any of this helps you at all, but I wanted to let you know that there is at least one system out here that seems to run pretty well.

    Tom
    Very interesting. I tested V10 but not V10.5. I assume you're saying that V10.5 is significantly faster loading than V10? I'll have to try it. I have it but never installed it.

    Thanks.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Henkel View Post
    Jeff,
    we're running ver 10.5 here, and, in all honesty, it is the only version since 5 that showed us any reasonable comparison in speed to ver 5. We bought 6-9, and in testing, we found that our users (>200) would throw us off the roof if we attempted to use them. I am running a win7 Dell optiplex 790 system, and ver 10.5 alpha loaded in 2 seconds. This wasn't loading any specific application, just the Alpha developer's software.Our main application is shadowed and, it too, loads very fast. We don't use Citrix. Our data is stored on a Windows 2003 server with direct connections to a 100Mb switch.
    I really don't know if any of this helps you at all, but I wanted to let you know that there is at least one system out here that seems to run pretty well.

    Tom
    I went back to install V10.5 and funny things happened as a result. First, you're right about 10.5 loading very fast. But I also tested V11 loading time again and it is now "normal", meaning that it is loading in a reasonable time. Something about the installation of 10.5, probably the .net setup, must have fixed an issue. So I'll keep testing this. I'm inclined to use 10.5 at this point since you have good experience with it.

    Thanks for your help.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Jeff,

    I don't remember actually loading plain ver 10. I think we went directly to 10. 5 as that was what was out when we purchased.

    Tom

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Henkel View Post
    Jeff,

    I don't remember actually loading plain ver 10. I think we went directly to 10. 5 as that was what was out when we purchased.

    Tom
    That's OK. I now have 10.5 installed and will use it for my situation rather than V11 or V7 (which is what I was going to do to get the loading time reduced). Thanks for your help.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I recently purchases V11 and updated my applications. I then installed V11 run-time on my users machines. They started to complain about how slow the new version was. Even after the application loaded, Alpha would freeze if they clicked on a date picker. I had to tell them to wait 30 seconds to a minute to use the app after it loaded. Finally went back to V10.5. The machines were a mix of Windows XP and 7.
    Carl C. Smith, Jr.

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Having recently installed V11 from V5 (I know, I know) it was REALLY SLOW loading for maybe the first week. Developer and runtime. Now it seems okay. I have some logic check mark fields and could could click on one of them to change the state and then about15 seconds later it would change. I was very worried. But now, the more I work with it it seems to have settled down and is faster than V5..especially when updating child records. Isn't that strange?

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    As explained in a previous post, Alpha Five Version 11 uses .NET 4.0 for much of the functionality. .NET 4.0 is optimized for Win 7, Vista and newer operating systems and should load in under 10 seconds in those systems, depending on the machine speed. This is typically within 1 to 2 seconds of A5V10. However, .NET 4.0 is not compatible with XP SP2 and older and is known to load slowly on all XP SP3 machines and Server 2003.

    The load sequence is optimized to load all required elements first, so the Alpha Five program opens as quickly as possible. NET 4.0 is required to support many of the V11 features and must be completely loaded to support some features such as the date picker. Typical load times for the full .NET functionality is 1 minute and up to 2 minutes on slower XP machines.

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Net 4.0 or no, it's taking A5V11 over sixty seconds to load over a network. Now once it's loaded, is shut down and then reloaded, it's faster--well almost instantaneous. I just mention this because I'm still chasing this issue. So does that the .Net at work or why would it be like that? BTW, once that first load is done, the other apps load fast, too. Is there any way to keep .net resident? Seems to flush out at log off--if that's what's causing the delay. Most clients figure it's a 'hang' and close it--then complain. Any work arounds?

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    Forgot to add that we are running Win 7 on all machines.

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    Default Re: Loading A5V11 very slow

    I'm running V11 on an old dog of a machine which I have to use due to VPN issues and secure data.
    Typically in XP I have found that once a program is launched, it is quicker second time. I suspect it's to do with the program residency and the path/connections I n memory.
    My dev pc using ssd takes 12 seconds to load and present Win 7. Another 5 secs to load Alpha.
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