Rails VERY slow on XP, snappy on linux?

Since some time back (I think since I upgraded to rails 1.2, but not
sure?) I am finding that Rails performance is dreadful on my 2 XP
machines. However, everything is quite snappy on my linux machine? Same
environment and rails version. Any ideas why?

Using Firefox on XP to browse to mongrel started in development mode on
an XP machine takes around 60+ seconds to startup initially and then 7+
seconds per page thereafter. Starting up the console takes a similar
age and running any rake tasks is just agonising (1 min+)

Starting up same version of mongrel on my linux machine and browsing to
it from the same XP machine is 1-2 secs per page and the mongrel startup
time is just a few seconds. I haven’t tested fully, but the console
takes just a few seconds to start (dev mode).

I have recently tried uninstalling Ruby completely on one of the XP
machines and re-installing using Ruby 1.8.6 and the latest rails. Seems
to have made no difference though

What could account for such slow performance on the XP machines?
neither ram nor processor are stressed. Both XP machines are decent
(one high end AMD, the other a 2Ghz Core Duo, both with 1GB ram).

Grateful for any pointers

Ed W

Ed:

This is normal. I’ve been working on this for more than a year… Ruby
is
just really slow on XP, especially with older processors.

I have a P4 2.6ghz machine that just dogs. Our servers perform equally
slow (dual xeon 2ghz).

However, our workstations with AMD dual-core chips or the dual core
Intel
chips seem to perform much better. Less waiting when running test,
scripts,
rake, or the console. Linux or OS X still runs circles around it, but
it is
an improvement. We were able to acheive much better performance numbers
on
our 64bit servers as well (even though the Ruby we used was not
optimized
for 64bit chips).

It’s an unfortunate fact of life that peformance on Windows is not that
great. I have been very successful doing deployment on Windows, but you
do
end up using a lot of extra resources to get the job done. I always
advise
Windows folks to deploy on Windows first to get comfortable, and then
invest
some of that time that Rails saves them and install a Linux-based server
solution.

Feel free to contact me off-list if you want to talk about this some
more.

Hi Guys,

This is normal. I’ve been working on this for more than a year… Ruby is
just really slow on XP, especially with older processors.

I agree.

I’ve used Rails on Debian and Ubuntu on obsolete hardware and got
better performance than WinXP on new hardware.

I’m reasonably sure it’s related to OS issues, because even on the
same hardware Linux performs better. I have a WinXP box with VMWare
player installed and an Ubuntu VM. Running Rails in the Ubuntu VM is
faster than running Rails on its WinXP host! It might be something to
do with Windows’ workstation editions allocating a higher priority to
GUI processes, so that Windows “feels” faster for the end user.

Regards,
Dave

Hi

This is normal. I’ve been working on this for more than a year… Ruby
is just really slow on XP, especially with older processors.

I have a P4 2.6ghz machine that just dogs. Our servers perform
equally slow (dual xeon 2ghz).

However, our workstations with AMD dual-core chips or the dual core
Intel chips seem to perform much better. Less waiting when running
test, scripts, rake, or the console. Linux or OS X still runs circles
around it, but it is an improvement.

I don’t think what I am seeing is “just a tad slower”!! I just ran a
rake task and it took 1-2 minutes on a fairly decent AMD on XP. But it
takes just a few seconds on my P2.8Ghz linux box? (both in dev mode).
Surely this isn’t normal?

Seriously how does anyone get any development done on windows if this is
“normal”? It takes 1-2 minutes to run the rake task to generate a new
model/controller, etc - is this the kind of performance that other
windows users are seeing on decent hardware?

Please tell me that others aren’t seeing this kind of performance?
There must be some simple bottleneck that can be removed? I can’t see
what it’s doing for all those minutes anyway - there is no CPU load for
example…??

Ed W

I find that ruby takes a 10 seconds or so to start up in XP, no matter
what
I’m doing. The actual task that I’ve asked ruby to do is pretty quick. I
can
tell this by comparing how long ruby takes to do tasks of varying
complexity. A simple script/generate takes very nearly as long as
something
far more complex. Maybe it’s worth you making similar comparisons to see
if
you have the same issue (but worse).
-Nathan

[email protected] wrote:

I find that ruby takes a 10 seconds or so to start up in XP, no matter
what I’m doing. The actual task that I’ve asked ruby to do is pretty
quick. I can tell this by comparing how long ruby takes to do tasks of
varying complexity. A simple script/generate takes very nearly as long
as something far more complex. Maybe it’s worth you making similar
comparisons to see if you have the same issue (but worse).
Yes, this is exactly the problem. Startup time of the rails environment
is circa 1 min+

This only happened “recently”, but it’s the same on two different
machines so I can’t really figure out what the similarity is. Also I
removed my complete ruby installation on one machine and re-installed
the latest Ruby-one-click plus rails.

So other people are just seeing about 10 secs plus for a rails console
to appear then (say). With my setup it’s about 1-2 mins…

Ed W

Ed:

Okay… a couple of minutes is an indication that something’s wrong.
There
is a significant difference in speed, but it’s not a minute for a
generator.

What version of Ruby, what version of Rails, and how did you install
them?

I am also noticing a bit of slowdown on my XP machine. Most command
line processes, such as starting mongrel, hang for several seconds
before executing. Web requests seem fast enough though, I don’t notice
a huge difference overall compared to Debian. My hardware is a fairly
recent intel core2 duo, with 2GB ram. Could it be the particular build
of Ruby for windows I am running? I’ve also run PHP and Perl
interpreters on this machine in the past and did not notice this
problem. What’s strange is I get better performance with the ruby
interpreter running linux inside vmware workstation with XP as the
host.

I’m running Ruby 1.8.4 installed via the “one-click” installer. Rails
is the latest gem.

i’m running 1.8.5 on windows xp as my dev box and i have no such
performance issues.

but i saw this on a crappy win 2k3 server this week. it had an on-access
virus scanner running causing rails to slow down to a crawl.

if you’re running a virus scanner that works that way try excluding the
ruby dir and your rails application directories from being constantly
scanned.

Brian H. wrote:

Ed:

Okay… a couple of minutes is an indication that something’s wrong.
There
is a significant difference in speed, but it’s not a minute for a
generator.

What version of Ruby, what version of Rails, and how did you install
them?

Is your database local or on another machine? That can take a
significant amount of time.

After a bit more probing it seems that using a wifi network card is
causing the slowdown… Switching to hardwired networking and now it
takes only 10 secs or so to startup the console.

I’m guessing that this points to something which has changed on my samba
server… Anyone else can confirm that a wifi card can work ok with
rails on XP? ie files are on the network drive, app is running on the
XP machine…

I know the latency rises quite a bit with a wifi card, but the slowdown
here is massive. For example my app is near instant in dev mode plugged
into the network, yes RJS templates take perhaps 7 secs plus when using
the files over wifi…

Anyone seen something on samba which can cause this?

Cheers

Ed W

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