DevonThink Demo Opening time

I was wondering how long it would “normally” take for DevonThink to open a small
database in demo mode? I’ve been running it in demo for some time now and
I’ve noticed that as the hours to the demo expiry wind down, the program takes longer
and longer to open. By longer I mean roughly 55 seconds - as opposed to 22 seconds.
The demo has 66 hours left to run… is this slowdown “built-in” into the demo? The longer
one uses the demo, the longer the wait for the file to open? i.e. GraphicConverter etc.

Secondly, if this delay isn’t a built-in “penalty” and considering that my file is going to be
very considerably larger with more database input, is the Registered program going to increase
its opening time as the database increases in size? What I’m asking is does the opening time have
any relevancy to the size of the database and if so, by what factor. i.e. twice the size of database
equals twice the time to open the file? 5 times = 5 times the time? :question:

I can’t speak to whether the demo has a built-in slow down at launch; perhaps Bill can help.

As for launch times, my experience is generally about 30 seconds to launch my DT database. It’s about 640 MB on the disk, 3.75 million total words. So I’m not experiencing the slow down that you’re describing.

If your database is small, the problem shouldn’t be disk fragmentation. Suggestion – try these three steps:

Tools > Verify and Repair; then
Tools > Backup and Optimize; then
quit DT and relaunch.It may help. Beyond that, it’s always a good idea to perform general system maintenance on your Mac (fix permissions, repair any directory errors). Bill DeVille has often posted on this topic – you can search on Bill’s name to see his recent posts.

Finally - as is discussed here, DT is performing a lot of verification and data security for you at launch.[/list]

Thanks for your answer to my query Fred - my DB is about 6 MB with approximately 325,000 words - not a very large DB at this point. That’s why I’m concerned that a large database will take forever to open on my machine. It would be useful if someone could tell me if the demo has a built-in “slow down” mechanism - perhaps someone in admin? BTW, I have done the verify and repair and the backup and optimize - no change in the opening time. I am also quite keen on keeping my OSX system maintained and do it regularly - I even have a triple back-up strategy! lol

There’s not a slow down mechanism during the demo – that wouldn’t be a very good demo, would it? :slight_smile: Note: The demo ‘clock’ may run while your computer is sleeping. To maximize use during the demo period, it’s a good idea to quit DT when you are not using it.

I just opened a 3 million word database in DT PE 1.9.2 on my 500 MHz TiBook in 29 seconds. That’s with my big DT Pro database open (14,594,749 words), along with DEVONagent, Mail and several other programs. The DT Pro database typically opens in 40 to 50 seconds, including opening the 5 windows I keep open all the time.

So 55 seconds to load your database does seem long.

I don’t know what kind of files you have, or how big some of them might be. Several users have reported slowdowns if they imported very large text files on the order of 50 MB or more (for example, a large mailbox imported as a single file). Since your database is only 6 MB, that doesn’t seem to be the problem.

The developers recommend an occasional Rebuild of DT databases as an additional means of keeping them healthy. Perhaps a bit has been twiddled somewhere e.g., a damaged text file, but doesn’t trigger an error report either when DT inspects the database while it is opening, or when Verify & Repair is run.

Try a Rebuild. But first, make a copy of your database and save it in another location (note: always close DT before copying the database). Next, launch DT, go to the menu bar and select File > Database Properties. Use Grab or another screen copy program to take a picture of the Database Properties pane. Why? For comparison of the number of files and words before and after the rebuild.

Now go to the menu bar and select Tools > Rebuild Database. DT will first export your database files, along with their metadata, such as creation and modification dates, URL, Path, location, etc. Then the files will be imported back into your database. Take a picture of your Database Properties pane, and compare it to the pre-rebuild picture to see whether any damaged files were rejected.

Close DT and launch it again. Any change in loading time?

Thank you Bill for taking the time to respond to query. It’s really appreciated! :smiley: Since I posted my intital request the demo has now 62.7 hours left on it (66 hours original posting) and it now is taking 57 seconds to open(55 seconds original posting). I’ve not added or deleted any files in my database since my initial posting but have opened DevonTHINK and let it run from time to time in the background… So (logically) it still seems to me that the further the demo time runs down, the longer it is taking to open the DB - without any changes to the database what-so-ever. Like I said before, this is a pattern I’ve noticed since the time left on the Demo dropped to below 90 hours and at that time the DB took approximately 23 seconds to open. Once the DB HAS opened however, there is no slowdown within the program. Can you understand why I think that the demo has a graduated delay built into it as time on it runs down?

I’ve taken the snapshots of the before and after (Rebuilt) Database as indicated and there is no change to the number of words or files. Thanks for the suggestion… I was hoping that this would speed the opening of the Database but no go - it’s still the same and I’m presuming it will continue to open slower as time goes on.

As an interest I opened Activity Monitor to see what it was reporting as far as CPU usage when DevonTHINK is opening the DB. During DT’s “Intitializing and Verification” DevonTHINK is using approximately 25 - 35% of my CPU cycle but after 2-3 seconds it drops back to less than 0.50 % during the 57 second countdown. Activity Monitor reports that DevonTHINK is “hung” during this countdown. This is the same thing Activity Monitor says of my PowerMail database (575 MB) while it is opening but in this case it only is “hung” for 3-4 seconds. So it seems to me that as far as CPU cycles go, DevonTHINK is not really doing anything but counting down. Of course, once the countdown is finished Activity Monitor reports a spike in CPU usage by DevonTHINK of 30-40% CPU Usage while my DevonTHINK file window is opening. It then drops back immediately to 0% CPU usage for DT as expected. Also noted is that Disk Activity reported by Activity Monitor is basically zero during the 57 second countdown by DevonTHINK. So, I’d like to ask - what exactly is DevonTHINK doing during that 57 countdown besides counting down?! :question:

Sorry for the misinformation in my previous post.

Both you and I should have looked at the ReadMe file. :smiley:

See page 3 of that file. The first 30 hours of demo use are free. Legally, that’s the end of the free demo period. But DEVONthink PE allows continued usage, so that if you decide not to purchase, your could export your data to the file system. Beginning at 60 hours of use, DT PE does show a disappearing count down of hours of usage, and the launch slows down. After 150 hours of use, the database cannot be opened unless the software is registered.

For a demo of DEVONagent, the numbers are 30 and 60 hours.

I downloaded the DT PE demo over 3 years ago, and found it so remarkable for giving me access to my PDF reference files that I very quickly bought a license!

The database launch times I reported (using my 4+ year old 500 MHz TiBook) are actually on the slow side these days. Christian noted a comparative time in his shop:

I’ll get a G5 next month!

Good Grief!! :blush: It’s been so long since I’ve read the Readme that I’ve totally forgotten what it had said!
No need to be sorry Bill - you’ve been an absolutely great help to me and have answered my query fully. I just regret at having wasted your time and Fred’s time. :exclamation: Now about you getting that G5 … :smiling_imp: I for one will be purchasing my DevonTHINK license forthwith. Thanks again for all your support. :slight_smile: