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Vectorworks is REALLY SLOW lately!

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This is sad but reassuring. I agree and echo nearly everything here. As much of a VW evangelist I have been over the years the time/lag frustrations have had me investigating other options. I toyed with switching to Sketchup a few years ago but Sketchup seems to be falling apart.  Each year we all seem to hold out hope that the next release will fix the performance issues. I've been using 19 since it came out a week (2?) ago and have not noticed any performance improvement despite the multi-threading which I was so excited about.

On the other hand, In my desperate desire to find a hardware solution to my issues over the years I've managed to build myself a pretty impressive workstation  that all the other software I use runs like a jackrabbit on.

I just wish there were less lags with VW. That's the #1 issue for me--that little delay after you click something or exit a dialogue. All those little 2 second delays add up to hours over the course of a big project. Especially when you renter or click twice thinking you missed and end up with two copies, one that you now need to delete, or whatever. That and the constant need to update viewports. And I have cashe on and the RAM to support it. But the candy stripe of doom haunts me. 

I'm into this program for 15 years and $12 grand or so (not to mention all the hardware 😉 so I'm loath to walk away. But shelling out a grand a year to stay current (something I only do so I can teach the current version to my students) is getting harder especially when so little changes. (remember when software companies would would release a new version every few years when they had a major upgrade. "I just got Photoshop 2 and it supports color!")  It's one thing if you're a big architecture firm where that licence upgrade is just a minor operating cost but for us in the arts and education its expensive. I've asked about a VW Lt--something even more stripped down than Fundies, but was told there were no plans. With Unities and Unreals and Blenders and Kritias out their how long is it until an open-source CAD program comes along that can do everything VW does (or more... or even half). If a "Layout" plug-in and some sort of parametric controls for Blender appears I might throw in the towel. 

I just hope for the sake of the software that I have been so loyal to over the years that VW  gets sorted out before that happens. 

8 hours ago, lgoodkind said:

  If you have a lot of objects in your resources library or have a custom workgroup library AND especially if it is on a network drive you are going to be driven mad. 

None of these are true for me and I still have performance issues. Single workstation, no drop box and I only have a handful (usually a few textures and lines) in my manager at any one time. 

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I am with you on this Sean. I am 20+ years into this with having 2 and sometimes 3 licenses. It’s really difficult to consider moving to another platform, but VW has become quite painful on a regular basis. 

 

 

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There is but 1 reason to force a buggy release every year - $$$.  So what do we do about it?  If you are an architect why aren't you using Revit with lumion or VRay?  If you are a landscape architect have you looked at LandFX lately?  There are alternatives, none are perfect but you don't see this level of angst on their user forums.   I don't think this corporate behavior is sustainable and will eventually correct itself one way or another.

 

 

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Is it just a matter of $$$ or is it that VW is so bogged down with years of legacy code and functions that it's basically a lost cause hoping it's ever going to transform into something modern and fast?

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2 hours ago, Joshec said:

Standard late night nonsense

 

Is a .VWXW file a project sharing file? And its a sheet layer viewport you're working on?

 

Kevin

 

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8 hours ago, Kevin McAllister said:

 

Is a .VWXW file a project sharing file? And its a sheet layer viewport you're working on?

 

Kevin

 

yes, going from design layer into viewport on sheet layer... been thinking about 2019 although i have not heard amazing reports to date and 2018 seems to be improved slightly since the latest SP.

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I'm following up on this. I, honestly, have been using 2019 on a daily basis for a couple of weeks now. With the ConnectCAD plug-in for wiring diagraming. We had a Holiday break, but I did some 3D architectural design on a sauna in my spare time. Full rendering, lots of layers. 

2019, SP1 (Build 456974) has been working just fine for me.

I DO still have a sluggish file if there is a huge PDF associated with it, but I am not mad about that. The PDF is huge, has hundreds of thousands of lines and I was less than clean about importing it.

IF i have three or four big VW files open, they can start to slow down some functionality.

I'll occasionally be running a Windows Virtual Machine in the background, along with AutoCAD 2018 for Mac. Then it starts to drag pretty bad. I'd expect this.

 

Macbook Pro (15", late 2016 touchbar)

2.7 GHz intel core i7

16 GB ram

Radeon Pro 460 graphics card with 4 GIG RAM.

 

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Hello everybody,

 

I've bought Vectorworks about a year ago and just upgraded to the 2019 version. 

 

Recently I am experiencing problems with my windows in my model. They take a really long time to load and when I try to change their geometry I get the well known beach ball loading icon. It doesn't matter if I select them in a 2D plan or 3D wireframe both are equally worse. 

It's gotten to the point where I need to save my file before clicking on a window since this may cause the file to crash or I either have to force quit the program.

Other CAD software programs run just fine and it looks like it's just Vectorworks who is lagging.

 

I was wondering if any of you experience the same 'lag' in the program itself and if so, how can I fix this?

 

Thanks everybody in advance.😀 

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Find it really frustrating to buy a new iMac computer and put all the add ons to satisfy the Vectorworks system requirements for "large, complex" projects and come to find out I can not even pan across a simple 2D line drawing without some pretty noticeable lag time.  With 2019 I am having a 1 second delay before I select a plug in object and it shows up in the object info palette.  I was getting nagging calls and emails to upgrade before it was "too late" and now I have to deal with an  $$ oversized computer on an undersized $$$ program... Started using Revit and about to make the switch all together.  Been about 12 years on VW so will be sad to go!

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I find this little disingenuous. First of all, an "undersized $$$ program" would imply Vectorworks is an expensive, undersized program. But you're moving to Revit, a more expensive program with fewer options (IMHO). And Vectorworks is, in fact, a "$$$ program". And frankly the best CAD or BIM deal on the market (outside open source options).

A new iMac - Unless you can provide spec's on your new iMac, nobody is going to be able to be very helpful for you. If you could, please include your computer specs and give us all an idea of what iMac you're using.

Any software of any kind is going to require a bunch of tweaks and a bunch of fine tuning. I've been using CAD since AutoCAD R12 in DOS. If you like Revit, by all means enjoy and move to it. But to upgrade Vectorworks, have an initial poor experience, then come on here and just say "Vectorworks is bad, i'm leaving for Revit" seems a little hollow.

I'm using a 2 year old laptop driving a 42" 4K outboard monitor and mange just fine on files in the "large, complex" projects category.

I also use AutoCAD 2018 on the same machine. Without a doubt, I can say first hand - 

Between the ability to get help directly from Vectorworks, and the Vectorworks model of purchase, I'm not moving my workflow to AutoCAD (or Revit) any time soon. The entire ecosystem determines my workflow, not simply a few factors. Every year I have this discussion with myself. Do I stay or should I go? I've stayed on with VW for a long time.

 

All that being said - I'll restate what worked for me to speed things up. This applies to this thread and the specific slowness I was experiencing:

Having at least 100 gig of free hard drive space on my Mac seemed to really speed things up.

Large PDF's imported then exploded slow things down.

Turning off other programs that hog RAM.

Some things to monitor:

I loaded a memory cleaner app on my laptop to monitor what applications are using my RAM. Not to be a shill, but it is a product from Nektony software. I won't link to it or give you the name, but you can figure out what it is if you're really interested. I have it set to clean up my ram allocation regularly. This will come as no surprise, but Google's Chrome browser is a huge memory hog. I routinely have between 2 and 4 gig of ram freed up when I quit Chrome. So I try and leave Chrome closed when I'm working in Vectorworks. The usual memory offenders (For me) are:

Chrome - Worst

Outlook - bad

Adobe Creative Cloud - Variable, but does use a bunch of RAM when you think it's idle.

The idea here is to give Vectorworks as much of my machines horsepower as possible.

As a benchmark - With:

Chrome

Vectorworks (application only, no file open)

Finder

Open, I'm using 60% of my RAM.

So for me, I only have about 8 gig of RAM available when Vectorworks is up and running. The fact I can spin and rotate a 3D model (albeit small-ish), seems pretty outstanding. In fact, when I open my smallish Sauna drawing, with rendering, and rotate it around, I'm still only at 84% RAM use-age. Vectorworks is only using about 3 GIG of ram according to the logs. So from what I can tell, Vectorworks is really efficient at using machine resources.

Hope this helps.

Kelly.

 

 

Edited by tekbench
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I recently upgraded my PC (details at end) and have seen no noticeable improvement in VW2019 speed over VW2015.

(I am on the subscription, tried VW2017 and had so much trouble I stayed on VW2015 as it was at least stable. But alas, Windows 7 & VW2015 are no longer supported.)

 

A file created in VW2015 with a fair amount of single-family home detail (corbels, curves, etc.) was miserably slow for any of the "fleshed out" renderings.

With VW2019 upgrading the file to 2019, not much difference.

 

BUT  -  I notice when in Hidden Line mode, grabbing the model and spinning it shows the hidden line view move around as fast as you can move it but when you let go of the mouse, it asks if you want it to be rendered and then have to wait the usual delay for hidden line rendering.

If the reason for this extra delay is the final hidden line rendering quality is better than the real-time spinning it around, okay but I'll take the "quickie" version of hidden line any day!

That would save a huge amount of time and it appears the program already has that ability. Why won't VW let us opt for that use of hidden line?

 

Anyway, after thousands of dollars in upgrading I feel like I just wasted a bunch of money "to get current."

 

OLD: 

VW2015 SP5 Build 290108

Windows 7 Pro SP1

 

HP Z1

Intel Xeon E3-1245 V2 @ 3.40ghz 8mb cache 4-core

RAM: 16gb

NVIDIA Quadro K3000M 2gb GFX

 

 

NEW:

Fresh install of VW2019 SP2 Build 463397.

Windows 10 Pro for WS  v1809, Build 17763.195

 

HP Z4 G4

Intel Xeon W-2133 CPU @ 3.60GHz 8.25mb cache 6-core

RAM: 32gb

NVIDIA Quadro P4000 8GB GDDR5

HPZ38c display

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8 hours ago, Mik said:

A file created in VW2015 with a fair amount of single-family home detail (corbels, curves, etc.) was miserably slow for any of the "fleshed out" renderings.

With VW2019 upgrading the file to 2019, not much difference.

 

BUT  -  I notice when in Hidden Line mode, grabbing the model and spinning it shows the hidden line view move around as fast as you can move it but when you let go of the mouse, it asks if you want it to be rendered and then have to wait the usual delay for hidden line rendering.

If the reason for this extra delay is the final hidden line rendering quality is better than the real-time spinning it around, okay but I'll take the "quickie" version of hidden line any day!

That would save a huge amount of time and it appears the program already has that ability. Why won't VW let us opt for that use of hidden line?

 

 

If you want to view the model in 'real time' in a 3d mode - I'd say you should really be using OpenGL, not hidden line render. I don't think it's intended that you use hidden line in this way.

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4 hours ago, line-weight said:

 

If you want to view the model in 'real time' in a 3d mode - I'd say you should really be using OpenGL, not hidden line render. I don't think it's intended that you use hidden line in this way.

Yes — the hidden line preview is just OpenGL with show edges on, colors, textures, and shadows off. If you prefer to work in a hidden line-like mode, set your OpenGL options in this way. 

 

You’re likely not going to see many improvements in Renderworks speed among Vectorworks versions, as this is really just a bunch of math that always needs to happen, so only things like processor speed or availabile memory are going to affect RW significantly (the math is still the math). Where you will find improvements are new rendering options that can provide good results with less overhead — things like using parallax instead of displacement mapping for bump shaders, or using ambient occlusion instead of HDRI lighting. These settings sacrifice some realism for speed so they are not automatic.

 

On the other hand, new options that increase realism, like caustics, will increase rendering time. 

 

Whete you should find improvements are things like 2D navigation, sheet layer navigation, OpenGL rendering, etc. The way many of these improvements happen, however, is by caching or sending tasks directly to the graphics card, which means that they are more prone to bugs, as they are dependent on specific OS hardware configurations. 

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49 minutes ago, JBenghiat said:

 

Whete you should find improvements are things like 2D navigation, sheet layer navigation, OpenGL rendering, etc.

 Unfortunately most of these things are a bit of a glitchy mess at present though (at least for a significant proportion of users)

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20 hours ago, tekbench said:

I find this little disingenuous. First of all, an "undersized $$$ program" would imply Vectorworks is an expensive, undersized program. But you're moving to Revit, a more expensive program with fewer options (IMHO). And Vectorworks is, in fact, a "$$$ program". And frankly the best CAD or BIM deal on the market (outside open source options).

A new iMac - Unless you can provide spec's on your new iMac, nobody is going to be able to be very helpful for you. If you could, please include your computer specs and give us all an idea of what iMac you're using.

Any software of any kind is going to require a bunch of tweaks and a bunch of fine tuning. I've been using CAD since AutoCAD R12 in DOS. If you like Revit, by all means enjoy and move to it. But to upgrade Vectorworks, have an initial poor experience, then come on here and just say "Vectorworks is bad, i'm leaving for Revit" seems a little hollow.

I'm using a 2 year old laptop driving a 42" 4K outboard monitor and mange just fine on files in the "large, complex" projects category.

I also use AutoCAD 2018 on the same machine. Without a doubt, I can say first hand - 

Between the ability to get help directly from Vectorworks, and the Vectorworks model of purchase, I'm not moving my workflow to AutoCAD (or Revit) any time soon. The entire ecosystem determines my workflow, not simply a few factors. Every year I have this discussion with myself. Do I stay or should I go? I've stayed on with VW for a long time.

 

All that being said - I'll restate what worked for me to speed things up. This applies to this thread and the specific slowness I was experiencing:

Having at least 100 gig of free hard drive space on my Mac seemed to really speed things up.

Large PDF's imported then exploded slow things down.

Turning off other programs that hog RAM.

Some things to monitor:

I loaded a memory cleaner app on my laptop to monitor what applications are using my RAM. Not to be a shill, but it is a product from Nektony software. I won't link to it or give you the name, but you can figure out what it is if you're really interested. I have it set to clean up my ram allocation regularly. This will come as no surprise, but Google's Chrome browser is a huge memory hog. I routinely have between 2 and 4 gig of ram freed up when I quit Chrome. So I try and leave Chrome closed when I'm working in Vectorworks. The usual memory offenders (For me) are:

Chrome - Worst

Outlook - bad

Adobe Creative Cloud - Variable, but does use a bunch of RAM when you think it's idle.

The idea here is to give Vectorworks as much of my machines horsepower as possible.

As a benchmark - With:

Chrome

Vectorworks (application only, no file open)

Finder

Open, I'm using 60% of my RAM.

So for me, I only have about 8 gig of RAM available when Vectorworks is up and running. The fact I can spin and rotate a 3D model (albeit small-ish), seems pretty outstanding. In fact, when I open my smallish Sauna drawing, with rendering, and rotate it around, I'm still only at 84% RAM use-age. Vectorworks is only using about 3 GIG of ram according to the logs. So from what I can tell, Vectorworks is really efficient at using machine resources.

Hope this helps.

Kelly.

 

 

These kinds of tips are extremely useful. I have to admit that I am not much of a computer geek and often just assume “things should work the way I think they should work” which often leads to disappointing results. I frankly did not know Chrome was such a resource hog. 

 

Jbenghiat, your insight is always helpful. 

 

 

 

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Thank you tekbench for your reply.  Below are the specs to my computer.  I do have over 100 gigs of free hard drive space and not running chrome or outlook.  I do have creative cloud running so will quit that and check again.  VW 2019 seems to start out fine but after 30-45 min I can start to see noticeable sluggishness, especially with plug in objects and re-draws. These are all with pretty simple 2 story residential models.  After 2 hours I just have to stop and re-start the computer.  I will try the memory cleaner and check RAM allocation and use per your suggestion.  I wasn't trying to sound disingenuous but it's been an issue for me since VW 2017 and just tired of what seems to be a program that with each upgrade gets better options but seemingly poorer performance.   

 

1570153463_ScreenShot2019-03-02at7_52_59PM.thumb.png.74ddb4ab44d70ac413078cbe94512e0f.png

 

 

 

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Just a small potato design firm that has decided to unsubscribe from Service Select and have yet to install VW 2019 - with my 2016 i7/16GB/500GB MacBook Pro, I've come to the realization that it's not just my MBP that may be the hindrance but with the amount of similar complaints of the lag and slowness of the app, that it's got to do a lot with the software itself - sadly I don't even utilize the Architectural license to its fullest as I was put off by its 3D workflow so with just a 2D workflow in tow using multiple files (Plans + Sections/Elevs) to keep things lighter, I'm slowly winding down VW as the go-to app and migrating to the Sketchup/Layout workflow, not because it's any better, but just because things just seem to go a lot smoother without the migrane-inducing lags experienced in VW and for a lot less $.

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On 3/3/2019 at 12:02 PM, amonka said:

I do have creative cloud running so will quit that and check again.

Just a note here, recently I had some major issues with VW2019, every time I seemed to click on a Plugin tool the program would crash and reboot, this happened when clicking a plugin object in a drawing. I spent a lot of time trying to work this out and turns out it was Adobe Creative cloud creating some type of conflict. I did a complete hard install of my entire machine and just installed VW2019, worked fine. installed Adobe Cloud them bam started crashing again. seems to work fine if I turn off the Adobe Cloud Services off in the background. In the crash report it seems to be a port conflict... but since discovering this VW2019 has been working a lot better for me although still lagging massively when using 4 or more Viewports per sheet layer so now I just export 1 or 2 into PDFS and if necessary fix it in illustrator. VW tech support has all the crash reports and information but I have not heard anything back to date. 

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Fortunately the CAD side of my work has been really light so haven't opened vectorworks in a couple of months, however I went to open it a couple of weeks back and discovered that 2017 doesn't work with OSX Mojave - what the hell?? I'm forced to upgrade to the latest version because Vectorworks can't keep up legacy support??

 

Now that I see that problems that were in 17 and persisted in 18 still haven't been fixed for 2019 I'm really looking for alternatives. I think the two most likely are either AutoCAD or running a separate boot of Windows and putting Solidworks on as we have a multiple user license of that here.

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Everything is slow! Simple things like:

 

Editing a dimension is slow.

Moving objects around is slow.

Navigating between sheets is slow

Save and commit is slow (yes it has improved, but lets face it, still slow)

 

There's a 2-3 second delay in everything I do....

 

Is anyone at Vectorworks doing anything about this??? I don't want to be frustrated anymore. 

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19 minutes ago, Amorphous said:

Everything is slow! Simple things like:

 

Editing a dimension is slow.

Moving objects around is slow.

Navigating between sheets is slow

Save and commit is slow (yes it has improved, but lets face it, still slow)

 

There's a 2-3 second delay in everything I do....

 

Is anyone at Vectorworks doing anything about this??? I don't want to be frustrated anymore. 

 

Try to REMOVE manually ALL the file installation from here and follow the manual instruction for 2015 mac version, then reboot the mac than reinstall last version 

 

 

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