Zotero launching very slow

After I updated to Zotero 4.0.15 its very slow, almost one minute to open. After opening, the activity monitor gives not responding more two minutes. This is happening in a Mac OSX 10.6.8. On a windows machine, I have done also the update to 4.0.15 and everything is ok!

Pedro Sobreiro
  • Is there a sync error icon to the left of the sync icon? It looks like your copy of Zotero has done the same large download from the server a few times.

    If you're seeing an error, report it and provide the Report ID. Otherwise, we'll need a Debug ID for a startup, using the "Enable after restart" option.
  • Yes its probably that! I checked the file size, and it was with 89Mb, the previous size before the upgrade to 4.0.15 was about 11Mb.
    Restored a backup and seems fine know.

  • edited November 15, 2013
    No, that's expected. 4.0.15 (4.0.13, really) added full-text content syncing. If you this machine wasn't where you were adding many of your items, you'd see a much larger database after a while of syncing 4.0.15 — and likely will again.

    If you still have the larger database, I'd recommend putting that back in, and we can debug this properly. But we'll need a Debug ID for a freeze to do that.
  • Ok! Were it is D1182894775. And a second opening debug ID at D782832360.
    This is at standalone. And at Firefox it seems normal D201679810.
    How can I reduce database size? For faster syncing and backing up when leaving zotero at Dropbox?
  • So, first, you can't reduce the database size if you want full-text indexing, which lets you search for attachments (PDFs, web snapshots) by their text content. As I say above, the only reason the database is getting bigger after 4.0.13 is that Zotero now syncs full-text content across computers, meaning that, if you have a large full-text index on one computer, you'll now have it on the other computers automatically when you sync without having to reindex files manually.

    But assuming you want to keep the index, let's figure out why it's slow for you. Two questions:

    1) If you (temporarily) disable "Sync full-text content" in the Sync pane of the Zotero preferences, does the slowness go away?

    2) What do the Index Statistics say at the bottom of the Search pane of the preferences?
  • Ok! Following the two questions:
    1) Disabled "Sync full-text content".... Yes it become very fast... As usual :)
    2) Index statistics say: Indexed 1321; Partial Indexed 175; To index 536; words 170242 ... Translated the terms, my Zotero is in Portuguese (pt-pt)

  • OK, could you install the latest 4.0 Branch dev XPI and then reenable full-text syncing and see if you still have the problem? If so, another Debug ID with that build would be great.
  • I have installed and reenabled full-text sync, and it seems to be fast as usual :-D
    Anyway I had submitted the Debug ID: D1470617330
    Meanwhile, I leaved it open, and it seemed that was crunching data? Could this be possible processing pdfs attachments and creating indexing terms... Becomed a bit unresponsively and after a bit it normalized the behaviour...

    Thanks Dan!
  • edited November 17, 2013
    Could this be possible processing pdfs attachments and creating indexing terms..
    Yup. With full-text syncing, Zotero downloads the content at sync time but then waits until your computer is idle for a few seconds before indexing it. If you start using the computer again it should stop. (This isn't ideal, but truly background indexing won't be possible until Zotero 4.1.)

    Anyway, it sounds like the two freezing issues you were seeing are gone with the dev XPI, so we'll be rolling out 4.0.16 tonight with those changes. If you like, you can stay on the dev XPI until then and switch back to 4.0.16 when it comes out. Thanks for the debugging help.
  • First I would like to say that was a pleasure to help, and I am very glad with this handovers... Great job being done here....Thanks for availability and quick solutions!
    I will use the dev XPI, at least on my Mac. On the windows based machine I will wait for the final release if there is no inconvenience in doing so!
  • may I add a comment on slowness?
    I'm also experiencing problems of slow performances on my windows machine, and this since before the latest realase. However contrary to sobreiro, I'm not doing a full-text sync; nor I sync my pdf files; i just manually sync from time to time the references on zotero.org, just to have a copy in case; I basically use zotero only locally at library where I work.

    So my question is what could justify such a slowness (that i experience in particular opening the database, and when starting a search, just when i click on the serach form for example - maybe because my pc is not exactly a new one - it is 4 years old, and still with an old windows xp os; however this shouln't be dramatic; until somem onths ago it performed quite well..)

    my sqlite db is some 60 MB
    and index statistics say:
    Indexed 341
    not indexed 570
    words 131.009

    Best regards
    Michele Bigoni
  • sounds like a different issue if this has started longer ago, but even with a slow-ish computer that size database shouldn't be an issue.
    Start a new thread and provide a debug ID covering an operation that you feel takes unusually long:
  • thanks, I will do. Of course now that I wanted to debug, it is not so slow as in the past days and weeks; just to avaoid sending you a useless debug, how long you consider to be an 'unusual' zotero start? 10,20,30,60 seconds ?

    best regards
  • the start is really the least interesting thing - the first time you open the pane loads the entirely library and so that may very well take a little longer - certainly 10secs for a largish library on a slow computer is not at all unusual and even 30+secs wouldn't necessarily indicate something not working. The idea would be that you don't restart Zotero/Firefox all that often.
    More interesting would be lags for normal operations (which are also easier to log for you)
  • the start was amazingly slow 30 to 60 seconds in the past days, and so was the search, or just positionig on a large collection. However I will monitor that accurately, amd possibli open a new thread.
  • Zotero 4.0.16 fixed a number of issues that could cause slowness on startup in 4.0.13-4.0.15 if you have a lot of file attachments. So this might have gone away simply because you upgraded.
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