NodeXL Processing Slowly on Two different Computers

Jun 20, 2012 at 3:17 PM

I have two computers with the latest version pf NodeXL installed.  One computer has 8G of memory, the other 24G. 

It takes about 2 minutes to refresh the graph on the 8G computer and nearly five minutes on the 24G computer.

Both seem too long, but the difference is particularly vexing since this large memory computer was purchased explicitly to run NodeXL.

Lots of system/software information follows.

Thank you,

Alan

TIMING
Dell Laptop   (8G memory): 2 minutes
Dell Desktop (24G memory): 4 minutes, 45 seconds


NODEXL VERSION
NodeXL Version 1.0.1.215 (2012-06-11)


GRAPH INFORMATION
The graph is directed.
The graph was laid out using the Fruchterman-Reingold layout algorithm.
The vertex sizes are based on betweenness centrality values.

Overall Graph Metrics:
Vertices: 328
Unique Edges: 95
Edges With Duplicates: 10218
Total Edges: 10313
Self-Loops: 0
Connected Components: 1
Single-Vertex Connected Components: 0
Maximum Vertices in a Connected Component: 328
Maximum Edges in a Connected Component: 10313
Maximum Geodesic Distance (Diameter): 2
Average Geodesic Distance: 1.92207
Graph Density: 0.0485194301484299
Modularity: 0.169116
NodeXL Version: 1.0.1.215

The graph's vertices were grouped by cluster using the Wakita-Tsurumi cluster algorithm.


OFFICE DELL PRECISION T3500 DESKTOP COMPUTER INFORMATION

EXCEL VERSION
MS Excel 14.0.6112.5000 (32 bit)

SYSTEM INFORMATION
System Name: 8Z8XNS1
[System Summary]

Item    Value
OS Name Microsoft Windows 7 Professional
Version 6.1.7601 Service Pack 1 Build 7601
Other OS Description    Not Available
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Name     8Z8XNS1
System Manufacturer     Dell Inc.
System Model    Precision WorkStation T3500
System Type     x64-based PC
Processor       Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU           W3505  @ 2.53GHz, 2533 Mhz, 2 Core(s), 2 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date       Dell Inc. A14, 12/29/2011
SMBIOS Version  2.5
Windows Directory       C:\Windows
System Directory        C:\Windows\system32
Boot Device     \Device\HarddiskVolume2
Locale  United States
Hardware Abstraction Layer      Version = "6.1.7601.17514"
User Name       8Z8XNS1\aneustadtl
Time Zone       Eastern Daylight Time
Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 24.0 GB
Total Physical Memory   24.0 GB
Available Physical Memory       20.5 GB
Total Virtual Memory    48.0 GB
Available Virtual Memory        44.0 GB
Page File Space 24.0 GB
Page File       C:\pagefile.sys


DELL LAPTOP COMPUTER INFORMATION

EXCEL VERSION
MS Excel 14.0.6112.5000 (32 bit)


SYSTEM INFORMATION
System Information report written at: 06/19/12 12:24:26
System Name: ALAN-DELL
[System Summary]

Item    Value
OS Name Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium
Version 6.1.7601 Service Pack 1 Build 7601
Other OS Description    Not Available
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Name     ALAN-DELL
System Manufacturer     Dell Inc.
System Model    Dell System Inspiron N411Z
System Type     x64-based PC
Processor       Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-2450M CPU @ 2.50GHz, 2501 Mhz, 2 Core(s), 4 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date       Dell Inc. A03, 1/9/2012
SMBIOS Version  2.6
Windows Directory       C:\Windows
System Directory        C:\Windows\system32
Boot Device     \Device\HarddiskVolume2
Locale  United States
Hardware Abstraction Layer      Version = "6.1.7601.17514"
User Name       Alan-Dell\Alan
Time Zone       Eastern Daylight Time
Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 8.00 GB
Total Physical Memory   7.89 GB
Available Physical Memory       5.59 GB
Total Virtual Memory    15.8 GB
Available Virtual Memory        12.9 GB
Page File Space 7.89 GB
Page File       C:\pagefile.sys

Jun 21, 2012 at 4:22 AM
Edited Jun 21, 2012 at 4:22 AM

That's odd.  On my fast-but-not-state-of-the-art computer (2.8GHz i7, 64-bit Windows 7, 8GB RAM), NodeXL shows a graph with 776 vertices and 18,264 edges in 12 seconds, significantly faster than it takes either of your computers to show a significantly smaller graph.

Perhaps the workbook you're using for your tests has some feature turned on that I'm not using in my tests.  Can you send the workbook to me, so that we're both measuring the same thing?  I'll contact you separately with an email address.

-- Tony

Coordinator
Jun 21, 2012 at 4:29 AM

Hello!

"MS Excel 14.0.6112.5000 (32 bit)"

I note that your versions of Excel are 32 bit and thus gains little from all that RAM you have in those systems.

Perhaps a 64 bit version of Office will improve things?
-
Marc
Jun 21, 2012 at 5:07 AM

Alan:

You have edge bundling turned on, which is a big time killer with large graphs.  When it bundles edges, NodeXL has to do a bunch of fancy calculations to determine how to do the bundling in a visually pleasing way.

With edge bundling turned on, it took 1 minute, 16 seconds to show your graph on my computer.  After I switched to straight edges (Graph Options, Edges, Curvature, Straight), it took 4 seconds.

There is still a performance difference among our three computers, and I'm curious to know whether it's due to CPU differences.  What is the "Processor" subscore in Performance Information and Tools on your computers?  (See http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Get-computer-speed-and-performance-information).  It's 7.5 on my computer, which is good but not stellar.

-- Tony

Jun 21, 2012 at 5:43 AM
Thanks for checking this out.

I will check my office computer next time I go in to work (not certain
when). My laptop is 7.0.

The real puzzle is why this is slower than on the 4yr old computer
with 2G I gave up for the brand new and expensive computer with 24G
and newer processor. Tough to explain to the finance people who paid
for the computer.

Best,
Alan


On Thu, Jun 21, 2012 at 1:07 AM, [email removed] wrote:
> From: tcap479
>
> Alan:
>
> You have edge bundling turned on, which is a big time killer with large
> graphs.  When it bundles edges, NodeXL has to do a bunch of fancy
> calculations to determine how to do the bundling in a visually pleasing way.
>
> With edge bundling turned on, it took 1 minute, 16 seconds to show your
> graph on my computer.  After I switched to straight edges (Graph Options,
> Edges, Curvature, Straight), it took 4 seconds.
>
> There is still a performance difference among our three computers, and I'm
> curious to know whether it's due to CPU differences.  What is the
> "Processor" subscore in Performance Information and Tools on your
> computers?  (See
> http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Get-computer-speed-and-performance-information).
> It's 7.5 on my computer, which is good but not stellar.
>
> -- Tony
>
> Read the full discussion online.
>
> To add a post to this discussion, reply to this email
> ([email removed])
>
> To start a new discussion for this project, email
> [email removed]
>
> You are receiving this email because you subscribed to this discussion on
> CodePlex. You can unsubscribe on CodePlex.com.
>
> Please note: Images and attachments will be removed from emails. Any posts
> to this discussion will also be available online at CodePlex.com
Coordinator
Jun 21, 2012 at 11:21 AM

The 8GB machine - running a 64 bit windows and 32 bit Excel may end up with less memory for the application than a 32bit Windows and 32bit Excel.

When both OS and application are 64 bit, you may find that the performance improves.

-

Marc

Jun 21, 2012 at 4:18 PM

Alan:

Does your newer computer have Internet access?  Your graph has two "Image" vertices, which cause NodeXL to attempt to get those images from the Internet.  Theoretically, a lack of connectivity will only delay the graph by 10 seconds per image maximum, but you might try clearing the "Image" cells (C28 and C31) as an experiment.

-- Tony

Jun 21, 2012 at 4:23 PM
All the computers have internet access and I have run the file with
the links active and inactive. The difference is not measurable.

I understand that the bundling increases the processing time, but why
an expensive desktop computer with 24G is so much slower than a
"cheap", "junky" laptop purchased from Costco so much faster is
troubling. I cannot get to the office computer to test the processor
speed until Monday. The laptop processor was 7.

I have also ordered the 64bit version of MS Office which Marc
suggested. That should be delivered by Monday or Tuesday.

Thanks for your help.

Best,
Alan

On Thu, Jun 21, 2012 at 12:18 PM, tcap479 <notifications@codeplex.com> wrote:
> From: tcap479
>
> Alan:
>
> Does your newer computer have Internet access?  Your graph has two "Image"
> vertices, which cause NodeXL to attempt to get those images from the
> Internet.  Theoretically, a lack of connectivity will only delay the graph
> by 10 seconds per image maximum, but you might try clearing the "Image"
> cells (C28 and C31) as an experiment.
>
> -- Tony
>
> Read the full discussion online.
>
> To add a post to this discussion, reply to this email
> ([email removed])
>
> To start a new discussion for this project, email
> [email removed]
>
> You are receiving this email because you subscribed to this discussion on
> CodePlex. You can unsubscribe on CodePlex.com.
>
> Please note: Images and attachments will be removed from emails. Any posts
> to this discussion will also be available online at CodePlex.com
Jun 21, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Alan:

This graph is not constrained by memory.  I would not expect 64-bit Office to make any difference in this case.

Your laptop is faster than your desktop when edge bundling is turned on because edge bundling is multithreaded, and your laptop allows more threads to run simultaneously.  A "thread" is a sequence of calculations, and because edge bundling requires so many calculations, NodeXL gets as many threads running as possible to perform all the work.  Your laptop allows four threads:

http://ark.intel.com/products/53452/Intel-Core-i5-2450M-Processor-(3M-Cache-2_50-GHz)

...while your desktop allows only two:

http://ark.intel.com/products/40800/Intel-Xeon-Processor-W3505-(4M-Cache-2_53-GHz-4_80-GTs-Intel-QPI)

So I'm not surprised that your laptop is faster than your desktop at bundling edges.

-- Tony

Jun 25, 2012 at 8:04 PM
Here are the numbers from the new office computer. The processor is
slower (I am surprised by that), but the graphics seems really slow.

Any thoughts?

Thanks,
Alan


Base Score 4.0
Component Details Subscore
Processor Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU W3505 @ 2.53GHz 6.4
Memory (RAM) 24.0 GB 7.6
Graphics ATI FirePro 2260 4.0
Gaming graphics 3323 MB Total available graphics memory 5.4
Primary hard disk 365GB Free (465GB Total) 5.9



On Thu, Jun 21, 2012 at 1:03 PM, [email removed] wrote:
> From: tcap479
>
> Alan:
>
> This graph is not constrained by memory.  I would not expect 64-bit Office
> to make any difference in this case.
>
> Your laptop is faster than your desktop when edge bundling is turned on
> because edge bundling is multithreaded, and your laptop allows more threads
> to run simultaneously.  A "thread" is a sequence of calculations, and
> because edge bundling requires so many calculations, NodeXL gets as many
> threads running as possible to perform all the work.  Your laptop allows
> four threads:
>
> http://ark.intel.com/products/53452/Intel-Core-i5-2450M-Processor-(3M-Cache-2_50-GHz)
>
> ...while your desktop allows only two:
>
> http://ark.intel.com/products/40800/Intel-Xeon-Processor-W3505-(4M-Cache-2_53-GHz-4_80-GTs-Intel-QPI)
>
> So I'm not surprised that your laptop is faster than your desktop at
> bundling edges.
>
> -- Tony
>
> Read the full discussion online.
>
> To add a post to this discussion, reply to this email
> ([email removed])
>
> To start a new discussion for this project, email
> [email removed]
>
> You are receiving this email because you subscribed to this discussion on
> CodePlex. You can unsubscribe on CodePlex.com.
>
> Please note: Images and attachments will be removed from emails. Any posts
> to this discussion will also be available online at CodePlex.com
Jun 25, 2012 at 10:10 PM

Your video card is an older, low-end model that is not meant for high-performance graphics.  I'm not surprised that its Windows score is just 4.0.

I don't know how seriously that's going to affect NodeXL, though.  The slowness you reported with edge bundling is due to your Xeon processor and its threading capabilities, or lack thereof, as I mentioned in my previous post.

-- Tony