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Very Slow Disc Access when Opening, Placing, etc


Ldina

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Since downloading v2.0.4, I am finding disc access to be excruciatingly slow when opening or placing files (and perhaps other operations that I have yet to uncover). This happens with all three Affinity Apps. Finder displays files in the same locations almost instantly, even in a large icon view mode, but it can take 20-30 seconds for Affinity apps to even display filenames when opening or placing files. This happens in Column, List, or Icon view modes. This didn't happen in v2.0.3 on my MacBook Pro and only started with v2.0.4. I consider this a bug because it hampers usability.

I'm on OS X Ventura 13.2, 2017 MBP with 15" monitor, and files are on an external 2TB HDD hooked up to my MBP Thunderbolt port. I have plenty of RAM, plenty of free HDD space, etc. Screenshots attached. 

Screenshot 2023-01-30 at 4.44.28 PM.png

Screenshot 2023-01-30 at 4.51.29 PM.png

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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Hi MikeTO.

I think you may have something there...If I set it to Open of Place a file located on my Desktop (iCloud storage), it responds very quickly. External drive is 20-30 seconds for it even to display the filenames. But I didn't have this issue with v2.0.3, so I assumed something changed. The drive is hooked to my MBP with a Thunderbolt to USB adapter, but the drive itself is a USB drive, and it's not a super screamer. It's formatted as  Mac OS Extended (Journaled) because I wanted to use SuperDuper! for backups wirelessly to another drive on my WIFI Network. APFS apparently didn't work with SuperDuper. 

I previously had my external drive set to sleep when possible to save battery power. I changed it to Never Sleep when it's hooked up to a power adapter (which it almost always is), but that didn't speed things up. Maybe I need to restart to have that take effect? 

I've also had the problem with Resource Manager not being able to find missing files from my external drive, which may be because it's not formatted for APFS. I can manually Replace files one my one, but clicking on a folder and having the files automatically relink en-masse doesn't work.

Maybe I need to upgrade to a large solid state external drive.

Thanks, Lou

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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12 hours ago, Ldina said:

Hi MikeTO.

I think you may have something there...If I set it to Open of Place a file located on my Desktop (iCloud storage), it responds very quickly. External drive is 20-30 seconds for it even to display the filenames. But I didn't have this issue with v2.0.3, so I assumed something changed. The drive is hooked to my MBP with a Thunderbolt to USB adapter, but the drive itself is a USB drive, and it's not a super screamer. It's formatted as  Mac OS Extended (Journaled) because I wanted to use SuperDuper! for backups wirelessly to another drive on my WIFI Network. APFS apparently didn't work with SuperDuper. 

I previously had my external drive set to sleep when possible to save battery power. I changed it to Never Sleep when it's hooked up to a power adapter (which it almost always is), but that didn't speed things up. Maybe I need to restart to have that take effect? 

I've also had the problem with Resource Manager not being able to find missing files from my external drive, which may be because it's not formatted for APFS. I can manually Replace files one my one, but clicking on a folder and having the files automatically relink en-masse doesn't work.

Maybe I need to upgrade to a large solid state external drive.

Thanks, Lou

Hi, I did a test just now with an old external USB hard drive I use for backups. I found no difference between 2.0.4 and the 2.0.3 beta (since I don't have the final 2.0.3 installed now). Are you seeing the slow display every time you try to open or place from the same folder or just the first time?

When I first connected the drive, both Finder and Publisher were slow to display the files in folders but once I'd done it with either then the other was fast. I did a lot of ejecting and re-connecting the drive to ensure both of them felt the same speed. This is the key thing, you can't try it in Publisher and find it slow and then try it in Finder because it will be fast then. So if you want to test, you'll have to eject, reconnect, and test with one app, then repeat for another.

Cheers

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.3 from this forum - expanded 260-page PDF

Affinity 2.3.1 for macOS Sonoma 14.3, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

 

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Hi Mike.

I think I have a dog-slow drive, or maybe it's the way it is formatted (OS Extended Journaled). I tried placing a file in AP and it took over 20 seconds to show the file list. Then, I tried it again immediately after the first try and it took another 20+ seconds. So, it doesn't appear that it's a drive-sleep problem, since it should have awoken after the first Placement trial. Strange that I didn't have this problem with v2.0.3, at least that I recall. 

I may upgrade to a 2 or 4TB SSD external Thunderbolt 3 drive, which my MBP supports, and format it to APFS. Rather expensive, though. My current drive is a mechanical USB drive formatted to OS Extended Journaled, and that format doesn't play well with Resource Manager. 

I've never tried Cloud storage for my image files and was concerned that Opening or Placing files might be slow like this mechanical drive. If cloud storage for up to 2TB isn't too costly, and if it doesn't lag, I might consider that as an option instead of buying an external Thunderbolt SSD. Any suggestions? I'm a bit out of date with all this stuff.

Thanks, Lou

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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5 hours ago, Ldina said:

Hi Mike.

I think I have a dog-slow drive, or maybe it's the way it is formatted (OS Extended Journaled). I tried placing a file in AP and it took over 20 seconds to show the file list. Then, I tried it again immediately after the first try and it took another 20+ seconds. So, it doesn't appear that it's a drive-sleep problem, since it should have awoken after the first Placement trial. Strange that I didn't have this problem with v2.0.3, at least that I recall. 

I may upgrade to a 2 or 4TB SSD external Thunderbolt 3 drive, which my MBP supports, and format it to APFS. Rather expensive, though. My current drive is a mechanical USB drive formatted to OS Extended Journaled, and that format doesn't play well with Resource Manager. 

I've never tried Cloud storage for my image files and was concerned that Opening or Placing files might be slow like this mechanical drive. If cloud storage for up to 2TB isn't too costly, and if it doesn't lag, I might consider that as an option instead of buying an external Thunderbolt SSD. Any suggestions? I'm a bit out of date with all this stuff.

Thanks, Lou

Serif always recommends to save and link files from your internal drive and in particular warn about using cloud storage. I like using iCloud because it's very reliable and is convenient but I have experienced a few glitches using it with Affinity. I continue to use it but I'm not worried because I make a daily date-stamped backup on iCloud and I back up every so often to an external hard drive. I believe the pricing for iCloud and Dropbox is the same for 2TB. iCloud pricing. Dropbox pricing.

I have two external Western Digital HD Passport drives. They are identical 2TB models but one is much faster than the other because they were bought a year apart and have different drives inside. I looked into replacing them with SSDs last year but they still work perfectly and are just for backups so I didn't bother. I would normally just choose one of the drives offered on Apple's store to ensure it worked well with my Mac. Lacie and SanDisk are reasonably priced on Apple's store so I'd probably choose one of those.

Cheers

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.3 from this forum - expanded 260-page PDF

Affinity 2.3.1 for macOS Sonoma 14.3, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

 

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Thanks again, Mike. You've been very helpful and I appreciate it.

I decided to bite the bullet and just ordered a 2TB SSD Thunderbolt 3 drive from OWC. It is supposed to be backward and forward compatible, so it should work out. I'll format it to APFS and use that as my main repository for images, designs, etc. I'll transfer all the files and data from my old, slow, mechanical drive, then I'll reformat the old drive to APFS too and use it as my backup drive. I checked with SuperDuper! and he said it should work fine with my setup. 

I currently have 50GB of iCloud Storage, so I'll play around with uploading some files and see how it performs with Affinity. Perhaps in the future I will upgrade to 2TB iCloud storage for added backup protection like you have done. 

Thanks again and best regards,

Lou

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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@MikeTO

I just wanted to report back and close out this issue. I installed an OWC 2TB External Thunderbolt SSD drive for my photos, illustrations, publications, etc. I formatted the new external SSD drive to APFS. It took about 3 hours to transfer 1 TB of data to the new drive, mainly because the old external drive was so slow. 

The new drive is super fast and there is no wait time when opening or placing files from Affinity Apps now. The combination of SSD, Thunderbolt and APFS formatting made a night/day difference. I will reformat the old drive to APFS shortly and use it as a backup for my SSD. 

Regards, Lou

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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One more short post, in case others have similar issues stumble across this discussion.

Yesterday, I reset the NVRAM and SMC on my 2017 MacBook Pro. I was experiencing some strange behavior with my thunderbolt ports, slow disc access and other issues. I also turned off settings to put the external drive to sleep, etc. After resetting NVRAM and SMC, my disc access was much faster, even with my "slow"  mechanical 2TB external USB drive. Of course the mechanical drive not nearly as fast as the SSD Thunderbolt drive, but still infinitely better than it was before the reset. 

I originally thought the slow drive performance was an Affinity issue, since my agonizingly slow disc access began immediately after upgrading to v2.0.4. I don't know if v2.0.4 caused it or not, but the reset seems to have fixed it. 

Since different Mac models and years have different procedures for resetting PRAM, NVRAM and the SMC, it's best to do a search on the internet so you find the procedure for your particular model and year. I'm not Mac guru, so I'm not necessarily recommending anyone do these resets, but if you are having issues, it's one thing worth considering. 

2017 15" MacBook Pro, 16 MB RAM, Ventura v13.6.4, Affinity Photo/Designer/Publisher v2.3.1, Adobe CS6 Extended,
Dell 30" Monitor, Canon PRO-100 Printer, i1 Spectrophotometer, i1Publish

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