mctrexler
The Brain I primarily work in frequently freezes for several seconds, up to 10 or so.   Freezes in mid thought creation in most cases.   Often going to another program and doing something seems to knock the Brain back into action, but I don't know if that's correlation or causation.  And a lot of the time the freezing doesn't happen. 

Anyone else experienced this, and figured out if there's something I can do to solve it? 

Mark

W 7
B 8.0.0.7
J .045
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zenrain
I've noticed after a synch completes there is sometimes a short freeze, although much less than 10 seconds. Could this be it?
macOS 10.14.3
TheBrain 10.0.42
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mctrexler
No, this can happen at any time.   I notice it more early in the day but haven't systematically studied it. 

Mark
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Spacenexus
I have a large megabrain of about 100k thoughts. I've noticed significant lags and freezes on thought creation and activation for several years. I've tried to seek a solution over the past two years to the current lags but have been unable to get enough support attention on to it as I'm unwilling to send the entire dataset to the company. The lags can often be associated with high disk activity, but not always.

Ideally, there should be a diagnostic utility that allows users to identify corruptions within their brain dataset without having to compromise security of that information. As it stands I'm not certain whether the freezes are due to a corruption within the dataset or an systemic gap in performance coding. I suspect that in my case, it is a combination of both. There is possibly a corruption in the dataset occurring from the same problem Zenrain experienced in 2011 (i am unable to make uncorrupted brainzips anymore and so never use them), plus there appears to be significant delays in TheBrain software accessing complex mapping sets. having said that, when it does occasionally perform as it should, the response is instantaneous, so the optimization code is there, but rarely achieved for some non-systematic reason. You might want to make some brainzips and check for any corruptions, misaligned thoughts etc in the unzipped version. That will provide a clue whether there is a structural problem in the dataset that might be related to the delays. Since I was not able to achieve a solution I can't say whether the issues are related.

The problem also comes and goes depending on the version. I raised this issue several times before (http://forums.thebrain.com/post/show_single_post?pid=1271214372&postcount=8) and as of 8006 the freezes and lags occur with just about every thought activation or creation. It also locks up and crashes at least once per day.

I had wondered whether the lag was a hardware burden, but upgrading to a quadcore laptop with discreet graphics and 16GB RAM didn't make a difference. Also the disk is a SSHD with embedded cache with perpetual defrag on the platters so that is unlikely to be the issue. 

In the past, TheBrain team has made every effort to ensure that performance and scalability were maintained along with features and capability. Apparently, the only way to really determine the integrity of TheBrain files is to send your entire dataset to the developers so they can go through it. Whilst this is a genuine offer and endemic of the team's excellent customer support over countless years, it is not a workable approach.

It is also possible that the current poor performance is a function of the expansion of the ecosystem with the mobile versions coming online. In that case optimization or additional user self-repair tools may be pushed back for the next year or two until the new system is in place, which also makes sense (no point optimizing in mid-development). Perhaps the Rebuild Database or Overhaul Database functions address a self-repairing or optimizing capability, but I haven't found the documentation describing precisely what occurs with these procedures.

Despite the lags, it is still very usable and as long as i avoid brainzips, there is no data corruption. This may be the best scenario trade-off until a solution is developed.

Jim
@181218:
TB8022 32bit
Java 32bit Version 8 Update 141

Firefox, Office 2013 Pro Plus 32bit
64bit Win10Pro
64bit Primary Laptop, 8GB RAM, Intel Core i7
64bit Secondary Laptop, 64GB RAM, Intel Xeon E3
Brain user since zygote
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bmac
mctrexler wrote:
The Brain I primarily work in frequently freezes for several seconds, up to 10 or so.   Freezes in mid thought creation in most cases.   Often going to another program and doing something seems to knock the Brain back into action, but I don't know if that's correlation or causation.  And a lot of the time the freezing doesn't happen. 

Anyone else experienced this, and figured out if there's something I can do to solve it? 

Mark

W 7
B 8.0.0.7
J .045


Yes, this is happening to me as well.
Bill
customized Desktop PC (Haswell i7 4770 3.4 gHz with 32 GB RAM), Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, 256 GB SSD,  and a Microsoft Surface Pro 6, Windows 10, 512 GB SSD, 16 GB ram, i5
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mctrexler
Jim, thanks for that detailed thought!   I'll try the Brainzip - don't use those anymore either (based on multiple recommendations here in the forums).  Now that I think about it, I think the last time tried to transfer a Brain from one machine to another with a Brainzip it didn't work. I assume that the failure becomes evident only after you try and open it, as opposed to the zipping process itself?

Agree with your points.  Only that 30k thoughts, but at 10 GBs.  Happily there's not really proprietary stuff in there, so in theory could send it to Brain folks.  But not anxious to do so. 

Mark
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Larathiel
I've been noticing these brain freezes on my Win 7 laptop since I first got the machine, but only when I'm off the corporate network and am trying to use it at home.  The same brain files show no lag at all on the laptop nor on my Win 7 home desktop.

Stranger still is that I had recently switched to a slightly newer hardware model of our corporate laptops (Dell Latitude 5530 -> 5540) in order to test out Windows 8.1.  The exact same brain files that were problematic when on the home wi-fi before were working flawlessly.  However, when I had wrapped up testing Win 8.1, I swapped the HDD from my 5530 into the newer 5540 (nicer screen), and the intermittent freezes are back — yet only when at home.

Considering that one of the brains I'm using at home contains important details of NPCs, places, and quests for when I'm GMing for my weekly Pathfinder/D&D group, random minute-long pauses every 2-3 minutes are a huge problem and renders one my my most important tools worse than useless.  (Worse because it frustrates me and pulls me out of a narrative mindset and into a troubleshooting mentality.)

Note that this behavior is still present even after the new Java and Brain updates in the past week.

Java 7u60
Win7 x64
Brain 8.0.1.1 (May 22, 2014)

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Larathiel
So I performed some more experiments.

Tried installing the 64-bit version of both Java and The Brain (I use Office 2013 x64, though I don't add Outlook items in my brains), but the change seems to have had no effect on the random pauses.

I also tried disabling "Sync Automatically" on one of my brains and again saw no change.

Where I did see a change, however, was when I disabled the Wi-Fi on my laptop and simply worked in standalone. Within a minute after making this change, TheBrain became totally responsive with none of the frequent intermittent freezes. Upon reenabling WiFi, I was once again met with freezes, mostly upon selecting a thought from the quick-search, or attempting to activate a thought.

FWIW, the WiFi adapter (as shown in Device Manager) is an Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260, driver version 16.1.3.1.  Note that the freezes seem to occur with equal frequency whether I'm on wall power or battery.
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mctrexler
Very interesting experiment.  I also did some testing, with interesting results. 

1.  Turned off Wifi - no significant freezes in 40 minutes of intense thought finding and renaming

2.  Turned on Wifi - no big problems until my Ipad had trouble connecting to Netflix, saying there was a wifi communications error.  I didn't get any such message about my computer wifi connection, BUT suddenly the Brain was freezing like crazy. 

3.  Turned off Wifi - still had problems. 

4.  Restarted the Brain and first attempt failed due to a Java initiation problem.  Tried again and it worked.  No major freezing problems. 

I'm always worried in this kind of testing that you see what you want to see, but I must say there seems to be some link between the freezing and wifi, or perhaps more accurately between wifi and Java operations, which influences the Brain?  

Mark
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enkidu
OK, I haven't really noticed freezes, but rather crashes. But your postings tickle the troubleshooter in me.

If you have large numbers of URL thoughts (I have near-zero) and you've ticked the "Index URL attachments" thingi then it will probably do just that, and freeze your machines.

That said, I'd have thought that TheBrain is rather disk-intensive (hence disk-sensitive) than network-sensitive.

Rather than disable Wifi, try uncheck the "Index URLs" option & see what happens.


cheers
enkidu
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enkidu
Also, please dont forget that if you :

- use the JDK rather than the JRE,
- launch TheBrain with the appropriate troubleshooting options
- run Java Mission Control (comes with the JDK)

you can monitor your Brain's activity down to the last metric.

cheers
enkidu

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mctrexler
Thanks for the advice.  Unfortunately neither "index url attachments" or "index file attachments " is checked in the brain.  Turned those off long ago, probably for this same reason.

In terms of the rest of your points about monitoring Brain activity, sounds interesting.  But I'll admit Im not familiar with most of what you're talking about. Is it possible to give a little more info?

Thanks!

Mark
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enkidu
Hello Mark

If you are not familiar with JDK and JRE then I suggest skipping this entirely.
Application metrics monitoring is not something ordinarily done by us users.

Your best shot is writing to TheBrain support.
As a user, I'm intrigued by the apparent correlation between your freezes and WiFi.

cheers
enkidu
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mcaton
I'm thinking you may benefit from increasing Java's available memory.

By default, TheBrain uses a maximum of 192 MB. This is usually enough but for some operations there may be an issue with running out of heap space. If this happens, raise the amount of memory. The example below raised the max to 320 MB, but the number can be higher if needed.

1. Close TheBrain

2. Create a text file and put the following content into it:

-Xmx320m

Make sure there is a linefeed (Enter) at the of the text. Save this file and name it TheBrain.vmoptions in the Brain program folder (where you installed the application).

Thanks,
Matt

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mctrexler
Interesting.  We'd done that before with your guidance, but the file isn't there.  I guess installing 8.0.1.1. wiped that file out?  Anyway have put it back with the value "400" and we'll see.  BTW, I have the Brain showing me memory used and available, and it doesn't show any change at all (the two numbers add up to about 180).  Does that make sense?

Mark
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