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Vectorworks unusable after fresh install on new high end system



Hello everyone,


I might need to open a proper ticket but thought I might give it a shot here as I'm kinda lost.


I just built a new Windows 10 workstation for the studio and I'm having a lot of issues with VWX and, when compared to my personal M1 Max, it gets destroyed. All tests were done using the same file. First, opening the file takes longer on PC and the whole software freezes (without showing it in the title bar, I had to open Task Manager to check that) for more than 2 minutes (it takes roughly 10 seconds on Mac) before switching from a sheet layer to the design layer view. Then if I select the orbit tool and perform an action, for example, it freezes again for another minute before actually moving the camera, then it seems to work just fine orbiting and panning/moving. Also switching between other tools at that point seems to work just as on the Macbook, even though, if I move an object like a lighting instrument or a 3D object it seems it takes longer than the macbook to perform it. Switching between Wireframe, Plan View, Shaded or any other mode causes a lot of lag that is not present on Mac. Publishing the same sheets takes roughly 15-16 minutes on Mac and 22 on PC, starting from the same out of date viewports. Finally, closing the software on PC causes it to freeze again and takes about 2-3 minutes to close completely.


The VWX install was made today right after the build and the installation of a fresh copy of Windows 10 Pro, run all the updates and installed all the drivers. The system doesn't appear to have any stability issues as benchmarks came clear and runs good with anything else.


Specs of the system as follows:

Motherboard: Asus TUF GAMING B760M-PLUS WIFI

CPU: Intel Core i9-13900K (not overclocked)

RAM: 64 GB DDR5 @ 6000MHz

GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 Founders Edition (not overclocked)

OS: Windows 10 Pro (Build 19045.3086)

Software: Vectorworks Spotlight 2023 SP5 - Build: 702742


What I was able to notice is that Vectorworks never used more than 20% of my CPU at any time during any of these operations. Also, this list is not comprehensive as I didn't have to inspect the issue any further today and I'm writing from home right now but hopefully this is enough information to start investigate into this as I was really caught by surprise by the really underwhelming performance of this system that I was expecting to upgrade our workflow.


Thanks for your time

Edited by jacoporicci
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Hello Pat, yes the motherboard and the CPU both support and have integrated graphics but I can see VWX hitting the 4090 when switching to Shaded. Also, this issue doesn't look tied to graphics as it's laggy even when performing basic tasks such as opening and closing the software.

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I am not a Windows guy, so I don't have a lot of other suggestions.  


I know lots of people are running VW without this problem, so it seems to be some kind of an issue with your machine or installation.


What happens if you start without any Nvidia or gaming extensions installed?


Mostly posting here hoping the some of the Windows people who follow me will see this and chime in.

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As the motherboard is identified as a 'gamer' product –even though it is a custom build– it might come with gaming/graphics-related software. These have been known to cause issues for Vectorworks and the solution has been to either exclude Vectorworks from their effects or to remove the gaming/graphics software. If they're only running as 'Services' in the background they might be hard to identify in Task Manager. To learn more about this, check out this thread for full context. A proven solution is found after this comment


On 6/21/2023 at 8:57 AM, jacoporicci said:

What I was able to notice is that Vectorworks never used more than 20% of my CPU at any time during any of these operations.

Some operations use only one or few cores of a CPU meaning they could be working hard but the total CPU engagement does not reflect that. You can observe individual core activity in Task Manager > Performance (tab) > CPU. I suppose issues may arise if the few cores are being employed are being pushed to their limit. But I doubt this is the cause here because your CPUs base/efficiency speed is 2.20 GHz which doesn't really match the issues you're having. But I see that model does have an integrated graphics card, so if you haven't already, you will need to constrain your system to use the dedicated graphics card for Vectorworks. Instructions for doing this are found here: 



My money is on the graphics card.


I'm keen to learn from this case, so please report results here as it will benefit others. 


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Hello Jeremy sorry for the late reply and thanks for the very good advice. I'm planning on reviewing the entire system at the end of august/beginning of september as I also experienced weird results on Depence, even though all the usual stress tests and benchmarks keep coming out clean. This will probably include a teardown/rebuild of the entire system and a fresh new install (followed by the inclusion of your suggestions) of everything.


I'll try and do a software test as you suggested before tearing it down though, I'm curious to see if that's the only reason why it's acting weird. But trust me, it's really weird at the point that my windows laptop is doing better so there's definitely something weird happening.


I'll keep you posted

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Hey @jacoporicci, I've just re-read this thread and a couple of extra thoughts came to mind, prompted by the relatively slowness when doing things seemingly unrelated to the graphics card. 

  1. Antivirus: 
    1. Speed: Any antivirus software including Windows Defender can slow down certain processes. This happens every time software is installed, but might happen at other times too. Perhaps antivirus is active when performing certain file-related actions. –Monitor Task Manager during unexpectedly long processes. 
    2. Complete/sound installations: I've never had issues with Windows Defender but all third-party antivirus should be disabled during installations because they have at times prevented normal installations, quarantining files due to false positives. If you have ESET Endpoint Antivirus there is an additional setting that must be disabled, 'Host Intrusion Prevention System' (HIPS). 
  2. Hardware Integrity: 
    1. Maybe your hard drive is being slowed down due to a physical fault. -I expect there are tests you could do to establish this.
    2. (I'm reaching here) Maybe a BUS on your motherboard is faulty but is only evident when under heavy loads or under certain operations that invoke its involvement. 
    3. Check all connectors between components are plugged in properly and aren't affected by heat distortion. There was a big hullabaloo about RTX 4090 connectors (like yours) melting when under load. If connection problems exist they could cause all sorts of problems, including slowdowns that might become evident under some circumstances. 
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