23 Replies Latest reply: May 18, 2010 11:49 PM by Peter Grainge RSS

    RH 8 - Slow Performance

    Jasta09

      RoboHelp 8.0.2

      I am test upgrading a project from X5 to 8.0.2. The project has been around for 6+ years, updated regularly, and is quite large (1,000s of topics and images). The majority of these files are in the root folder.

      When I upgrade the project, RoboHelp 8 runs very slow. I can out-type the editor, and it is slow to move around the topic list and project manager. Basically, it is much slower performing any task. I am trying to create some folders to move topics into, but it is taking some time just to create the folders.

      I have test upgraded a smaller project and it doesn't have this issue. However, it is much smaller and the project was create about a year ago. Anyone have any thoughts as to what is causing RH to run slow and how I can increase performance? I work on this project on a daily basis, so this performance issue will have a significant impact.

      Thanks

        • 1. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
          Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

          If the project is on a network, move it to a local drive.

           

          If it is on the local drive, try closing the project, renaming the CPD and reopening.

           


          See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

           

          @petergrainge

          • 2. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
            Jasta09 Community Member

            Thanks for the reply.

             

            The project is on a local drive.

             

            My first attempt to upgrade failed. I made a new copy of the X5 project files, found the latest update (8.0.2), and renamed the CPD file. It upgraded successfully, but has been slow to work in. 

             

            Some of the topics do not display correctly. So far, I found some of these can be corrected if I create and apply a new style sheet.

             

            The PC meets all systems requirements.

             

            Could old code cause a problem? Some of the topics have been around for several years.

             

            Thanks

            • 3. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
              RoboColum(n) ACP

              The fact that new projects don't have this issue suggests it is project related. Old code shouldn't be an issue. How big is the project? Are there lots of images, dropdowns or other interactive elements. Also do you have access to RH8 on another PC? Does the same happen there?

               

               


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              • 4. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                Jasta09 Community Member

                I decided to run Task Manager when I used RH on smaller projects just to see what it would show. It seems to hit the performance montior quite a bit, but since the projects are small, I don't notice it much.

                 

                RH was installed as a trial version and then I purchased the licenses. It shouldn't make a difference, but I think I'll uninstall RH and download it again. If I can get access to another PC, I'll try that as well.

                 

                The project has over 4,000 htm files and probably close to 2,000 image files (per the used file report).

                • 5. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                  Jasta09 Community Member

                  I still seem to be having performance issues with RH8 and my WebHelp project. I can out-type the editor, slow to move around the topics, etc. I installed RH8 on a clean machine with WinXP SP3, 2.8GHz, 4GB RAM and installed the RH8 updates. The project upgrades without error, but the performance is slow. I tested a smaller project and the samples, and they don't seem to have a problem, but the are also much smaller (15-30MB). The project that I'm having performance issues with is closer to 200MB.

                   

                  I've generated the WebHelp output locally without any apparent problems. I tried creating a blank topic with no stylesheet or template/masterpage, but it still had the same issue. Anything else I can look at or test?

                   

                  Thanks

                  • 6. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                    Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                    Not sure what to advise. I typically limit projects to 4/5000 topics as that is where on a previous PC I found performance issues kicked in, not to the degree you cite but noticeable. That was with X3 though so my thinking is that you should be seeing the same performance with your RH8 version as you did with X5. In any case you are within that figure.

                     

                    The next likely cause would be a bloated CPD but you say you trashed that.

                     

                    The number of images is high and I have seen that cause problems with projects where the number of topics is within the figures above. Again though that was with a higher number of images.

                     

                    I think what I would do now is create some copies of the project and then trash a different half of the topics. Any difference between the two? Maybe split again. The idea is to see whether the chunks start to show differences or a level at which they all perform better. After trashing the topics, close the chunks and delete the CPDs before reopening and testing so that you always work with a clean CPD. You can get RH to do this for you by turning on the option to clear the cache in Tools > Options.

                     


                    See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                     

                    @petergrainge

                    • 7. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                      Jasta09 Community Member

                      Thanks for the suggestions so far.

                       

                      I tried deleting half the topics in the project and the performance did improve, but it started to decrease as I imported the files back in and it didn't seem to make a difference which half of the project files I deleted. I tried removing all templates and style sheets from all topics without any noticeable difference. I even tried starting with a blank project and importing the project topics, but the performance started to decrease after I imported about half the topics.

                       

                      So I decided to upgrade the project and work on it from there (I still have a backup). I noticed that some of the topics lost formatting after the WebHelp was generated even though it looked correct in RH. I found if I made any edit and saved these topics they would display properly when the WebHelp was generated again. I started making updates to multiple topics hoping that may help identify the performance issue (no more than 4 topics opened at a time). This revealed a bigger problem - RH will run for 1-2 hours and then I'll get the hour glass. If I'm patient and wait at least a minute between clicks, I can save my work and exit RH. I have had RH up and running for longer than a couple of hours, but it mostly just sat. Now that I am working in it, I am running into this problem. I have RH configured to delete the CPD file on start.

                      • 8. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                        Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                        1,000s of topics and images. The majority of these files are in the root folder.

                        Looking again I suspect that is part of your problem.

                         

                        Put most of your topics and images in a folder structure and I think it will improve things.

                         

                        Thousands of files in one folder is bad for any product.

                         

                        If you throw paper files in a skip, see how long it takes to find them. Put them in a cabinet with labelled folders and you can go straight to what you want. It's no different.

                         


                        See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                         

                        @petergrainge

                        • 9. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                          Jasta09 Community Member

                          I try creating the folder structure. I was planning to do that after the upgrade so we can track things easier. What's the best way to move images? I can drag and drop the topics, but so far the only way I have found to move the images is one at a time in Project Manager.

                           

                          Thanks.

                          • 10. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                            Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                            You got yourself into this one.

                             

                            Sorry but that is the only way, drag and drop the topics and drag and drop the images.

                             


                            See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                             

                            @petergrainge

                            • 11. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                              Jasta09 Community Member

                              Actually, I inherited it and I'm trying to upgrade/improve it.  

                               

                              However it's probably due to the way the files are created. The help file is dynamic and is updated on a daily basis. I create the topics using the TOC, positioning the topic where it is to live in the TOC and then crtl+t to create the topic. This creates the topic in the root folder and there appears to be no option to specify the file location. This means that each topic is created in the root and then has to be manually moved to another folder. Is this correct or is it possible to create a topic in the TOC and specify the folder location in one step?

                               

                              Is there a best practice recommendation when setting up a folder structure? I'm considering just mirroring the TOC. We plan to eventually move to Source Control for multiple author support as well.

                               

                              Thanks

                              • 12. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                                Sounds like you are stuck with the method.

                                 

                                Folder structure is just something logical to what you are doing. In our case we sort of mirror the application menu structure in most cases.

                                 


                                See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                 

                                @petergrainge

                                • 13. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                  Jasta09 Community Member

                                  Thanks for the feedback. I'll keep working on it. However, I am still having a problem where the hourglass will appear and I am unable to work in RH. It will be going along fine, and then I'll get the hourglass. It will change back to the pointer for a moment and then go back to the hourglass. It's like it's stuck in a loop. It seems to happen when I work in RH continuously for a couple of hours. I have to exit RH and restart it to work on the project again. Has anyone seen this issue?

                                  • 14. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                    Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                                    Isn't this where we came in? You reported slow performance which was a known problem until the first patch was released. After that there have been no reports of people still having the problem and I thought we concluded that was because of the structure of your project, or lack of to be more precise.

                                     

                                    Prior to patch two, a flickering cursor was a sign of trouble but first you have that patch and second it occurred on opening a project rather than after working on it.

                                     

                                    The only other thing that occurs to me is you say this occurs after working for a long period. Are you working with a serious number of topics open and are you saving regularly. You are automatically trashing the CPD so that should help.

                                     


                                    See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                     

                                    @petergrainge

                                    • 15. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                      Jasta09 Community Member

                                      No, this is a different issue. The original issue is that it is slow, specifically when editing topics. This is a new issue I hadn't seen until I started working with it consistently. I didn't see it before because I would do some edits/additions occasionally throughout the day while testing it. It doesn't just slow down, it almost appears to hang, but it does switch to the pointer for a moment and then returns to the hourglass. So I can actually exit through File>Exit, but it takes a couple of minutes for it to register the mouse clicks. This is a bigger issue for me than just slow performance because I have to close the project and restarted every couple of hours.

                                       

                                      I've been moving topics to the new folders, and creating and editing topics. I save often and don't have more than three or four topics open at a time.

                                      • 16. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                        Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                                        Check that Help > About shows 802 and check in Add/Remove or Program Features that the 802 patch is showing there. Do both, not just one.

                                         


                                        See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                         

                                        @petergrainge

                                        • 17. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                          Piyush Bhatnagar Adobe Employee

                                          Hi Jasta09,

                                           

                                          I assusme that you have already installed RH 8.0.2 update and then also you are facing this issue. If this is the case, is it possible for you to share your project with us so that we can reproduce this at our end and try to find out the root cause of this issue?


                                          Thanks and regards,

                                          Piyush Bhatnagar

                                          Adobe Technical Support

                                          • 18. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                            Jasta09 Community Member

                                            Both Help/About and Control Panel show 8.0.2.

                                             

                                            Unfortunately, I can't share the file - it contains confidential information.

                                             

                                            The project has some topics dating as far back as 2001. Many of these older topics are imported Word docs (as far as I can tell). I have been re-creating these as I go due to the fact that they contain inline styles, but some still exist. There are also some "foldername_files" folders that I have been trying to clean-up as well, since it is sometimes difficult to tell if they are being used by the project.

                                             

                                            Are there any configuration settings I should check on the computer or in RoboHelp? I still have a backup of the project running under X5 (on a different machine) until I can figure out this issue if that is helpful.

                                             

                                            Thanks

                                            • 19. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                              Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                                              Just wondered if you had noted that Piyush is not another user like myself but a senior person within Adobe Support? You would be sending the project direct to Adobe and no one else would have access to it.

                                               


                                              See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                               

                                              @petergrainge

                                              • 20. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                                Jasta09 Community Member

                                                Piyush, is there any way I could contact you offline? I would appreciate your help.

                                                 

                                                Thanks,

                                                Jennifer

                                                • 21. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                                  Piyush Bhatnagar Adobe Employee

                                                  Hi Jennifer,

                                                   

                                                  You can send me a mail at pibhatna (at) adobe.com

                                                   

                                                  Thanks and regards,

                                                  Piyush Bhatnagar

                                                  Technical Support Engineer

                                                  • 22. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                                    Janatwork Community Member

                                                    Today I opened a RoboHelp 8 project (In Nov 2009 I had converted it from RoboHelp x5 to 8). Today, once the project opened, on the RoboHelp desktop, the hourglass kept appearing, and the application was slow. (Note: My project also has many topics and images.) This project survived the Nov 2009 bug and all the related fixes. I haven't updated anything since early December. It unnerved me to see the flickering hourglass again, this five months later.

                                                     

                                                    I read through the suggestions in this discussion thread, and renamed the cpd file, and then reopened the project. So far (after 5 minutes working on this project with the regenerated cpd file), everything seems to be working correctly. Do you have any suggestions for me? Should I just proceed with caution?

                                                     

                                                    Thanks!  --Jan

                                                    • 23. Re: RH 8 - Slow Performance
                                                      Peter Grainge ACP/MVPs

                                                      Only the standard advice to backup daily. Renaming the CPD will boost performance until it needs compacting again (it is an Access database and they need compacting from time to time). Instead of compacting it, what RH does it rebuild it, same end result.

                                                       

                                                      In RH8 there is an option to rebuild the cache every time you open a project. See Tools > Options.

                                                       


                                                      See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                                       

                                                      @petergrainge