[R] R 2.0.0 (Windows): slow startup over the network
thpe at hhbio.wasser.tu-dresden.de
Wed Oct 6 15:18:30 CEST 2004
Prof Brian Ripley wrote:
> On Wed, 6 Oct 2004, Thomas Petzoldt wrote:
>> I installed R 2.0.0/Windows on our network server (Win NT 4.0) with
>> all CRAN packages and observed a quick startup on this machine
> That's actually very slow: decent machine are well under 1s.
The NT server is optimized for network traffic, not for running local
applications and it's not brand new.
>> However, when started from different client machines (e.g. Win NT
>> 4.0 or Win XP Pro SP2, Athlon XP 1700, 100 Mbit Network) the R Gui
>> Window appears immediately but then it takes 90 seconds to get the
>> startup message and the command prompt.
>> The R base configuration (without additional packages) takes only 4
>> seconds on both, the server and the client.
> So it's slower without the additional packages!
Yes, but the difference lies within the confidence interval (median of
two experiments with sample size n=3). The load of the server during the
test was very low, but not zero and there might be some autocorrelation
between the trials.
> Read the NEWS file, which says
> As the lazy-loading databases will be consulted often, R will be
> slower if run from a slow network-mounted disc.
I see, but I don't yet understand why additional packages which are
*not* loaded do require startup time.
> and I have only seen this with Windows network-mounted discs. With
> our 7-year-old Sun Sparc 1 server running Samba it takes about 25s,
> and that is a pretty extreme situation (and that server is about to
> be retired), which were are solving by installing R 2.0.0 locally.
This is not a good solution, but I may try a mixed approach. Small
version on the network and complete versions on dedicated clients.
> Your network looks very slow, and maybe needs checking out. No one
> checking alpha or beta versions has reported any problems, including
During the testing phase with the development version of R 2.0 I
installed only the necessary packages, not all, but from time to time
it's nice to look into some more contributed packages.
I can do some additional tests, e.g. on a Samba share and see, if I can
isolate the problem.
> I do plan to address this in a future version, and did not do for
> 2.0.0 precisely because no end-user reported any problem during
Thank you very much!
Dresden University of Technology
Institute of Hydrobiology petzoldt at rcs.urz.tu-dresden.de
01062 Dresden http://www.tu-dresden.de/fghhihb/
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