Author Topic: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories  (Read 2370 times)

Offline DadCooper

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PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« on: November 13, 2011, 05:55:47 AM »
I am evaluating PM 4.6.8, running Vista on a Lenovo laptop with an Intel core duo T9300, 2.5 ghz with 3 gig useable ram.  I am not a professional photographer, however, I am an engineer and have been using and programming computers since 1965.

On my home network, in addition to the laptop, I have a NAS box and two other intel machines running XP pro.

I have been corresponding with Bob Russell of your organization but for some reason he has stopped replying.

When I start PM with the navigator pane closed, it starts in the 5-8 seconds Bob told me it would.  If I start PM with the navigator pane open, the load time increases depending on what subdirectories are shown in the navigator pane.  For example, if the navigator pane is completely closed and only showing the top level tree structure, the load time is only a few seconds more. The load time increases in proportion to the subdirectory level.  If the navigator pane is open to the subdirectory the intel machine on the network that contains most of my photos (over 16,000 by the way), the program takes about 60 seconds to load.  This is way too long.

If I start with the navigator pane closed and then open it, there is still the delay in response when trying to navigate to a deep subdirectory.  It doesn't appear like the problem is just on opening.

It appears to me that the program is reconstructing all of the thumbnails of any subdirectory shown in the navigator each time the navigation pane goes to a deeper level subdirectory.

I have a copy of "Faststone Image Viewer" and a really old copy of "JASC PhotoAlbum.  Neither of them takes anywhere near this long to get to a subdirectory.  I would like to be able to replace "PhotoAlbum" with PM but it has to be capable of being used by my non computer savy wife.  My reason for replacement besides the fact that PhotoAlbum is a 2004 version (my wife can use it just fine) is PM's ability to imbed IPTC info directly into the photo file so that comments and other things are not dependent on an external database like PhotoAlbum and most of the other programs I have looked at.

I need to have a way to force the program to only construct the thumbnails (if that is what it is doing) when a subdirectory is opened.  This would allow me to get to the place where I want to work without waiting for the program to slog its way through all of the other places.

Two questions.  First, is my supposition what is happening?  Second, even if the problem is something else, how can I make the program stop doing whatever is causing the really long delay?

Thanks, 

DadCooper


Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2011, 06:23:16 AM »
I am evaluating PM 4.6.8, running Vista on a Lenovo laptop with an Intel core duo T9300, 2.5 ghz with 3 gig useable ram.  I am not a professional photographer, however, I am an engineer and have been using and programming computers since 1965.

On my home network, in addition to the laptop, I have a NAS box and two other intel machines running XP pro.

I have been corresponding with Bob Russell of your organization but for some reason he has stopped replying.

One of our support guys is out on leave and Bob is swamped trying to do the work of two people right now.  I'm sure he will get back to you eventually.

Quote from: DadCooper
When I start PM with the navigator pane closed, it starts in the 5-8 seconds Bob told me it would.  If I start PM with the navigator pane open, the load time increases depending on what subdirectories are shown in the navigator pane.  For example, if the navigator pane is completely closed and only showing the top level tree structure, the load time is only a few seconds more. The load time increases in proportion to the subdirectory level.  If the navigator pane is open to the subdirectory the intel machine on the network that contains most of my photos (over 16,000 by the way), the program takes about 60 seconds to load.  This is way too long.

If I start with the navigator pane closed and then open it, there is still the delay in response when trying to navigate to a deep subdirectory.  It doesn't appear like the problem is just on opening.

It appears to me that the program is reconstructing all of the thumbnails of any subdirectory shown in the navigator each time the navigation pane goes to a deeper level subdirectory.

I have a copy of "Faststone Image Viewer" and a really old copy of "JASC PhotoAlbum.  Neither of them takes anywhere near this long to get to a subdirectory.  I would like to be able to replace "PhotoAlbum" with PM but it has to be capable of being used by my non computer savy wife.  My reason for replacement besides the fact that PhotoAlbum is a 2004 version (my wife can use it just fine) is PM's ability to imbed IPTC info directly into the photo file so that comments and other things are not dependent on an external database like PhotoAlbum and most of the other programs I have looked at.

I need to have a way to force the program to only construct the thumbnails (if that is what it is doing) when a subdirectory is opened.  This would allow me to get to the place where I want to work without waiting for the program to slog its way through all of the other places.

Two questions.  First, is my supposition what is happening?  Second, even if the problem is something else, how can I make the program stop doing whatever is causing the really long delay?

PM is not generating thumbnails when the Navigator is filling out its directory tree.  It is simply getting all of the directories in the tree that are visible and it is doing this process on the main event thread instead of on a background thread.  I suppose the other apps you listed are doing this process on a background thread so it appears that they are faster.  It takes time to get directory information (especially if it is over a network).  Unless there is some sort of super-fast directory scanning method that I'm missing out on, I suspect it is the threading issue.

There is nothing that you as a user can do to make the situation better other than to avoid navigating to folders over your network.  You can always forgo using the Navigator and just use Windows Explorer for your navigation and then use drag and drop to get PM to open the folders.

-Kirk

Offline DadCooper

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Re: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2011, 12:45:07 PM »
Kirk,

Thanks for the reply although it doesn't make me overly happy yet.  I did try the drag and drop and it does work as you suggest.  Wouldn't it be nice to have a 'search' box in the "Open contact sheet" that would let you enter the location directly instead of having to navigate the tree!  That way I could just do "\\xxx\xx" to get directly to the place I want to go without opening windows explorer.  Something for the next version.

Another feature that would be good is for all of the prior contact sheets to reopen when the program is restarted instead of just the last one.  That alone would make my wife's life (and mine by reference) a lot easier.  That way you would not have to open windows explorer every time just to get the other directory.  The reason for this is that we make a summary directory to put the "good" photos in for subsequent printing for our photo album by copying photos out of the original directory (never move).  I suppose we could use tagging and rating but I have enough trouble getting my wife to do what she does now.  Maybe I will try it in the future.

The last thing I noticed is that when a photo is copied into another directory it is always placed at the end of the list even though it is dropped near the beginning and the sort method is "arrangement".  Seems strange because once it is in the second directory you can select it and move it around - why not just let it be put right where you want it the first time.

PS: you can tell Bob that he doesn't have to answer me since you have done it for him.  Thanks.


Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2011, 12:54:15 PM »
Thanks for the reply although it doesn't make me overly happy yet.  I did try the drag and drop and it does work as you suggest.  Wouldn't it be nice to have a 'search' box in the "Open contact sheet" that would let you enter the location directly instead of having to navigate the tree!  That way I could just do "\\xxx\xx" to get directly to the place I want to go without opening windows explorer.  Something for the next version.

Another feature that would be good is for all of the prior contact sheets to reopen when the program is restarted instead of just the last one.  That alone would make my wife's life (and mine by reference) a lot easier.  That way you would not have to open windows explorer every time just to get the other directory.  The reason for this is that we make a summary directory to put the "good" photos in for subsequent printing for our photo album by copying photos out of the original directory (never move).  I suppose we could use tagging and rating but I have enough trouble getting my wife to do what she does now.  Maybe I will try it in the future.

The last thing I noticed is that when a photo is copied into another directory it is always placed at the end of the list even though it is dropped near the beginning and the sort method is "arrangement".  Seems strange because once it is in the second directory you can select it and move it around - why not just let it be put right where you want it the first time.

It is kind of a chicken and egg issue.  The file you're dragging does not yet 'belong' to the contact sheet that you are dropping it into and because it doesn't exist yet it cannot be 'moved' from where it 'was' to where it will be.

-Kirk

Offline DadCooper

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Re: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2011, 01:14:37 PM »
Kirk,

Interestingly enough my old copy of JASC photoalbum solved the placement on copy problem in 2004.  Wonder who forgot how?  I suspect it is merely a matter of noting where the cursor is when the file is dropped and then relocating it to that spot when the mouse lets it go.  You don't have to answer this - just an observation.

On another note, I was scanning through some of the forum posts on new features and ran across someone talking about the "favorites" pane.  I tried putting several directories into that pane and then restarting with the navigator turned off.  It does make the load somewhat faster and allows easy opening of each contact sheet.  The more directories in the favorites pane, the slower the load.

It would be really nice to have the favorites pane show the whole path.  The reason is that all of the subdirectories on each machine have the same name so that it is easy for "beyond compare" to keep them coordinated.  Since I can't see the path, it is just 'faith' that I am changing the correct one.



I am going to work on that for a while.


Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: PM 4.6.8 slow loading subdirectories
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2011, 02:34:44 PM »
Interestingly enough my old copy of JASC photoalbum solved the placement on copy problem in 2004.  Wonder who forgot how?  I suspect it is merely a matter of noting where the cursor is when the file is dropped and then relocating it to that spot when the mouse lets it go.  You don't have to answer this - just an observation

Oh, I'm not saying it can't be done.  Just that it hasn't been implemented in PM and that it isn't trivial to do so.

-Kirk