i have seen quite a few threads but no solutions yet that work for this problem. my documents tend to have quite a few of layers, using very frequently shapes with layer effects. up to a certain amount of those the app is very responsive, and then once i hit a certain level it gets very slow. strange just moving a vector shape using the direct selection tool is just fine. the regular nudging of a group or a layer brings up the progress indicator dialog.
so far i have tried:
- turn off layer previews (did improve things a tiny bit, but still unusuable with larger layer count)
- changed performance settings (cache level:2 or 4, and tile size 128k) (also no effect)
the only thing that seems to help is to break the file apart into seveal ones, which will have less layers, but that's not really a long-term workable solution for me, as i use layer comps and need a more global overview.
have others found a solution? i can't imagine being the only one with this problem.
thanks in advance for your throughts.
Have you updated to Photoshop 13.0.1 yet? There was a specific bug fixed in that update having to do with moving layers.
I haven't seen a problem with performance of moving layers around myself, but every document is different, and I have a PC, not a Mac, and the latter is where more performance problems seem to be reported lately.
Is your document very large? Can you be more specific about pixel count, how many layers, how complexly they're nested, how big it is when saved on disk, etc.?
hello noel --
thank you for your quick reply. yes, i have updated to 13.0.1 already and you are right i am using a mac, but a reasonably fast machine with 8GB RAM and i7 processor. I haven;t had those issues in previous CS versions. the file is around 320MB large (not too much i suppose), not sure what the pixel count is, but the canvas is 640x960. i am not sure how i can count all the layers, but i suppose i have a couple of hundreds, may be 300-400 or so. they aren't really nested much though, just 1 layer deep usually, max 2.
It doesn't sound too terribly large, though 300 MB isn't small. Do you know whether you have information beyond the visible edge of the canvas (e.g., have you used the Crop Tool with [ ] Delete Cropped Pixels unchecked, or placed any large images of which you can see only a portion?
I only have an intuitive feel for this issue, as I frequent this forum and have read a number of other reports of sluggishness, but I don't have a Mac on which to test things myself.
There have been some reports that 13.0.1 makes things better, but it still seems there is something that pushes people's Mac systems over the edge into being sluggish, and unfortunately Adobe or other users haven't managed to find a magic bullet.
I've heard folks say everything from running Onyx to reinstalling the entire operating system has helped, but that's second hand info as I just don't have the ability to duplicate your environment.
There was a thread where someone posted a document with a huge number of layers to test with, and another where someone suggested documents of a certain composition, and it was pretty easy to demonstrate that some systems could work through them more quickly than others, with the difference being greater than you'd expect based on computer performance alone.
If you have a way to post your PSD file online and would be willing to show it to others, I'll be more than happy to download it and see whether I'm seeing similar performance. A document that can reproduce a slow-down for others might be very interesting to Adobe as well.
hello noel ---
i am pretty certain i have nothing outside the canvas boundaries as i haven't cropped anything. as i do mostly UI work i hardly even use bitmaps, and most of it are straight up vectors with effects applied & text. it is rather strange, as this behavior is not exhibited when i simply select a vector path and move that around. only when i use the move tool. on the entire layer.
given my workload re-installing the entire system seems dauting to be frank, but i will look into it in my spare time. i wish i could send you the file, but this is commercial proprietary work, so i am not at liberty to distribute it. if i have some time later i might try to re-create the conditions with a fake file. i will see if i can get there.
I'm not suggesting reinstallation should be your first choice.
Assuming you're not trying to maintain anything out there where you can't see it, try this:
1. Choose the Crop Tool.
2. Check the [ ] Delete Cropped Pixels box.
3. Move an edge in then back out, so that the Crop Tool thinks it has work to do.
4. Complete the crop.
Does that reduce the document size or increase the speed?
You might want to read over some of the information in the various "slow/sluggish" threads on this forum. That will give you an idea of what's been tried.
I was having this problem on a PC, turned out there's something wrong with the way CS6 processes thumbnails in the layers panel that really slows down documents with lots of layers. Open up the layers panel options and select "none" under thumbnail size.
It was fixed for layer dragging and basic free transform use.
Nudging is still going to be slower because after every nudge, the layers palette is going to want to redraw (can't tell if it's the last nudge or another is coming, so at idle it tries to redraw).
I just tried to nudge a layer in a large, deep test document that was provided by another forum member over on the Photoshop.com site, and it takes 45 seconds to complete. I have a fairly rompin' stompin' 8 core PC here. I can drag the very same "white dots" layer group around with the Move Tool with a frame update rate of something like 5 frames per second, with at most 1 second between drag operations.
Chris, I'm sure you have a copy of this file already.
The exact same operation completes in Photoshop CS5 in under 5 seconds repeatably, without a progress bar, even though it's a good bit slower to drag the layer group around in Photoshop CS5 (it drags at something like 2 FPS in Ps CS5).
I don't know how to put this more gently:
You have another bona fide bug here, Chris.
Don't forget that I once asked you if you needed a software engineer who knows what they're doing on staff.
Yes, related to layer thumbnails. If you disable layer thumbnails, or change them to "entire document" instead of "layer bounds", the problem goes away. CS5 defaulted to "entire document" for layer thumbnails, so didn't show the problem.
And the good news is that it is related to a fix I already have in testing.
hello noel --
thank you again for your suggestions. i spent some time yesterday night with it, and the cropping doesn;t change the matter at all. of course i had already tried turning off the layers palette, but still the problem persists.
as i had indicated before, i can't share the file i am having these issues with, but i did spend some time to create a file which does show the issue, though in a slightly different way. i am not sure how to best share the file though. may be try this:
here is what you can experience. since i didn't have much time i just duplicated one group multiple times. after opening the file select the top most and try to move it. what you will see is that there is a significant lag before the move. this happens weather the layers groups below are visible or not. what is more surprising is that after "the first time", if you do an undo. the same operation works perfectly fine. so it seems something is going on there.
in my original file, i have about the same number of groups, however, they are all very different (not like here), so my guess is that that makes matters worse, or that may be there are simply more layers, aggravating it. in addition, an undo, will not speed things up.
not sure if this helps identifying the issue. i am using a rather modern macbook pro 17" with 8GB and 2.66 i7.
hello chris --
thank you for looking into the matter, it is much appreciated as it affects my work quite a bit. i also posted another file which exhibits a similar behavior, which i outlined in my post. let me know if you have any questions.
thanks in advance.
Not "turning off the layers palette", but turn off layer thumbnails in the layers palette or set the layer thumbnails to show the document bounds intead of layer bounds. Both are settings in the layers palette options dialog.
On your test file in Photoshop 13.0.1, nudging a group gets a spinning cursor for about 3/4 of a second after the nudge - but that's all.
Nudging a single layer is almost instantaneous.
That's nothing like what Noel and others are reporting (many seconds, progress bars, etc.).
sorry for not being clear. yes i turned off the thumbnails as you describe. as i mentioned above, this is not the file i am having the described issues with, it is much simplified and smaller. however, it does show some of the issue. instead of nudging, try using the move tool before doing anything else:
- open the file
- Marquee Tool (M)
- Command - Drag the top layer
in my case nothing happens for about a second before it jumps to the destination
- then undo
- Command - Drag top layer again
this time it moves smoothly as one would expect.
when i use the file i am working on right one, with many more laters, i get the progress meter instead, as well as when i nudge. the nudging does not show up here.
thank you for looking into this & your time.
I am staring to wonder if it is related to the number of layers in a document. Yesterday night i worked on a file which was very fast. After duplicating the layer group, it right away got much more sluggish. i can observe the same when i change the color coding on layer groups, the app hangs for a significant amount of time. is there a simple way to count the layers in a document?
thanks for heads up chris. in this case i am pretty sure that is the case for me. the slowness i am experiencing is always with documents, which i assume are upwards that number.
i am not sure if this is related, but i also noticed that the memory usage then readily gets very high (as much as 3GB). even after closing the documents and purging the memory it remains that high. after closing PS and reopening it, it goes back to normal, until i notice the slowdowns again.
hope this is helpful and thank you again.
That memory usage characteristic, where Photoshop allocates then holds RAM, is normal for Photoshop.
Regarding this issue, it sounds as though he's already solved it, Patrick, noting post number 12 above...
the good news is that it is related to a fix I already have in testing.
Now it is up to us to wonder how soon 13.0.2 will be coming out.
Last iteration leading to 13.0.1 took almost 4 months, but now we have the "cloud" fogging our view of the future: Adobe has threatened to stop releasing problem corrections to the fine folks who have sent in their hard-earned money for a license up front, and only roll some things out to folks paying a premium for monthly subscriptions. We shall see how well that works out.
I have been using Photoshop for years on PC and now most recently Mac, and have always found it hellishly slow. No matter the version or platform it has always been slow with layer-laden psds. For years I have just accepted this as the way things are.
I have always used ‘Clip thumbnails to layer bounds’. Having just read this thread I only now realised that if you turn thumbnail previews off or to document bounds that yes, performance is significantly increased. Scrolling and zooming is smoother and moving groups of layers is now the difference of 5 seconds and 1 minute or longer depending on the number of layers.
However turning off ‘Clip thumbnails to layer bound’ may be a fix but I find it leaves you flying blind, unable to navigate efficiently through your thumbnails. Layer bound thumbnails are an extremely productive and essential tool that I personally cannot go without.
I’m using the latest 13.0.1 version with 8gb memory.
I reckon this is something that will not be sorted with an update as it has been present for years.
Is there any progress on this bug?
The conversation stalled at someone mentioning that transforming items helps the performance lag of moving items - however that's not an adequate solution as an avid layer comps user transforming a layer (say) 100px to the right will cause that item to be moved 100px to the right across ALL your layer comps.
I'm a web/interface designer that's been using photoshop every single day for about 15 years & I don't think I've ever been so frustrated with poor performance or Photoshop.
And yes - I use ALOT of layers - because that's how I have always worked.
Only in the last couple of years have I had to start digging around in PS's settings to try & tweak performance - ironically when I've been using top of the line PC's to do my work (currently a core i7 MBP with 16gb of ram & a USB3 SSD scratch disk.) & moving a simple text layer 10 pixels takes about 10 seconds.
Come on Adobe - this is getting ridiculous.
If you like I'll construct a list of features I couldn't give 2 sh1t5 about if you dropped everything & concentrated on optimising performance for the basic use of photoshop (for interface designers)
Guys, Adobe released an update for Photoshop CS6 13.1 that seems to have fixed the nudging problem to a large extent. It still not as fast as earlier versions (Photoshop CS4 fastest, CS5 fast) - but now its less than a second delay (as opposed to being several seconds) in nudging large groups of layers with thumbnails on. With All panels off (Tab shortcut key) its superfast. Also I have set the performance settings to match earlier versions of Photoshop (CS5, CS4) - History & Cache - Tall and Thin - 20,4,128K. Please try the update and let us know your experience.
13.1 and 13.0.2 have about half of my fixes for documents with a large number of layers.
Some of the fixes needed further review and testing (changing core VM code is kinda risky), and I just got another test file this week that shows even more problems in odd areas of the program (and I'm working on fixes for those).
Most recent update to CS6 is an improvement, but transform tool is still VERY slow for me. 2-3 second delay between each refresh state, even on relatively simple images.
CS5 on the same computer was fine.
I've since moved over to fireworks. So far, I'm not looking back.
With Fireworks, there's no need to rely on the layers panel to find layers, as you can easily select them on the canvas.
The interace and rendering is pixel sensitive and intended for web output. Creating and resizing elements and moving them is never a problem and there is no delay like Photoshop.
Photoshop has always been slow, and I do not expect this problem to be solved. So don't hold your breath.
I reckon that since Photoshop is Adobe's flagship application, they are spending too much time on adding new features to sell newer versions, instead of improving basic functionality.
CS6 promised improvements of their base functionaility, and to a degree they acheived this, but it's not enough. I find in it's current state it is almost unusable. Everything is too slow and frustrating.
There's a yuppie stigma attached that says that designers should use Photoshop for design. I never considered Fireworks, recalling it as being a simple gif animator.
But Fireworks is faster that Photoshop, creates smaller file sizes and is more accurate for interface and web design. The tools are far more intuative.
It's taken a bit of readjustment, but for web and interface design, Fireworks seems to be superior in every way.
It's not perfect and it has it's own quirks as all Adobe products do but I'd recommend anyone having issues with Photoshop to give it a try.
Leave Photoshop for it's intended purpose - photo manipulation.
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