Why do reports take a long time to run and/or time out?

Many reports process a large amount of data.  Depending on the complexity of the criteria, and date range, they may take a lot of resources to run.  In particular Microsoft SQL Server needs to perform well.

Some IT infrastructural configuration that can be made to improve report performance:

  • Increase memory allocated to the SQL database server.  Ensure the Maximum Memory server properties is set to a high number that utilises as much memory as possible on the server.

  • Consider using Microsoft SQL Server Standard edition instead of Express, as the Express version restricts memory utilisation to 1GB, which may not be sufficient to run many reports once the database has gathered a few years of data.  It also has a database size limit of 10GB.

  • If the SQL Server is shared by other applications, there could be resource contention as they fight for resources on the database server.  Consider moving the Practice Evolve databases to a separate server, or move the databases of other applications to another server.

  • Check that the disk and processor is performing sufficiently fast.  In many virtualised environments, the disk and processor resources are throttled.  This can severely impact SQL database performance.  For example in Microsoft Azure or Amazon AWS, not using a sufficiently specified server will cause performance issues. For comparison benchmark, refer to https://evolveplatform.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360015433433. The performance of the disk and processor can also be affected by resource intensive applications such as antivirus scanners.

  • If Microsoft SQL Server is hosted by the same server as other applications that competes for memory and CPU time, consider moving it to another server.

  • Ensure you are using the latest version of the system, as we are constantly enhancing it and making performance improvements to various reports.

If possible, run the report multiple times across smaller date periods, rather than running a report that returns a large amount of data.

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