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ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

New Member
Posts: 6
Country: United States

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

7200 RPM and I run an Intel Celeron 3.06 GHz CPU and I have 1.512 GB of RAM.

 

But to me this is irrelevant because the disk drive speed is not on the system requirements for ACT 2009 and the processor is more than the "600 MHz Pentium® III processor (or equivalent)".  And I have more than enough memory (1.512 GB).

 

And I do not care if the thing runs SQL or not the bottom line is to perform and ACT 2009 does a very poor job at doing that.

 

If you pay hard earned money for an upgrade one would expect the performance to be upgraded as well - not to deteriorate!

Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 6,867
Country: USA

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Hard drive speed isn't a requirement but it does effect performance. ACT! has always been an I/O bound program so hard drive speed is significant.
Roy Laudenslager
Retired ACT! Certified Consultant
ACT! Report Expert
Durkin Impact Report Designer
New Member
Posts: 7
Country: United States

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Thanks to everyone who responded regarding the lack of product performance.  I would like to say that I am happy to learn that I am not the only one who had upgrade/performance issues, but the fact that I am not alone is in fact a big part of the problem.

I can remember when a world class program could run off of a floppy disk in 512K of memory (Excel 1.0). I can remember when 10 MB was a large hard drive, and not 20% of the size of an ACT file that grew by a fivefold factor when it was converted. Note that there is no more data in the old file than in the new. It just requires a box 5+ times as big to hold the same data. (Gee maybe that's one of the reasons it takes so long to do anything)

I realize that more RAM is better (always has been), I realize that a faster processor is better (always has been), and I realize that a bigger, faster hard drive is better (always has been). I realize that I would have more fun driving a Ferrari to work (duh!), but I drive something far more mundane because it does what I need (gets me to work) and I can afford it. What I didn't realize was that the "upgraded" program I was sold does not actually do what it is supposed to; work for me in the environment that I use it in.

The problem is not in the hardware. The problem is the software. The people who wrote it don't write efficient code. The people who support it don't understand what a customer is and the people who market it don't seem to care that what they have is not what people want or need. I understand that there are performance "issues". What I don't understand is how someone felt that this was a product that people would use, recommend, and evangelize.

Since the journey began, I have discovered that ACT 6 can in fact (with the right software) populate the appropriate fields in my Blackberry. That begs the question why would I use ACT 11 if I had a choice. Sage told me that I did not have a choice (end of life). I have discovered that in fact I do.

To the people who are required to wave the corporate flag and says things like "What is your hard drive RPM and what is the make of your processor? ", and "I personally do not like to compare ACT! 6.0 to later versions in terms of performance because of the different structures.  I can say that ACT! 2009 is by far the best version since the move to .NET and SQL.  One of the main focus areas for each release (especially 11.0) is performance.  We are aware of the performance concerns and development is always trying to find ways to increase performance." I have the following suggestion; Read George Orwell's "The Animal Farm", and pay attention to the behavior of the sheep (hint - they bleat;-)

If the hard drive RPM is really an issue, let people know before they buy, not after....

You may not like to compare them because of structure differences, but me I'm just a simple customer. I know what the old one did, I know what the new one does. The old one did what I needed it to do. The new one is prettier, has more robust features, can do more "stuff", and has brought my workflow to a standstill. I couldn't afford to use this product as it currently exists...

and if  ACT 11 is the best since the move to .NET and SQL. Wow, how bad were 7, 8, 9, & 10?
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Copper Contributor
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Country: UK

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

[ Edited ]

Edit*

Message Edited by broony on 01-08-2009 03:15 PM
New Member
Posts: 6
Country: United States

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Well, I got my money back so I am back to ACT! 6.03.979

 

Too bad I wasted all this time on ACT! 2009.  But maybe I will purchase an upgrade later - either when Sage addresses the performance issues and it runs well on a typical office computer (or I buy a Cray supercomputer)!

Copper Contributor
Posts: 5
Country: United States

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Hi David, 

 

thanks for the response. You make a good point that there may be new features with the SQL architecture.  As your customer though, let me tell you how that resonates. 

 

Act 6.0 tracked contacts, notes, did mail mergers, bulk emails, synched with my treo, word, outlook etc.  The flexibility of the queries, screen layout, fields, etc couldn't be better.  all this in package that was blazingly fast even with 10 other programs open.  I'm in business for myself.  when i want to look something up i want NOW, i cant' wait 30 seconds 100 times a day for a lookup.  So any incremental benefit is sideswiped but it just not being usable because of speed.  In my situation security does not matter 1/100 of what speed does....i'm not storing credit card or medical information, but granted other users may want slow and secure.

 

. ....so lets say someone wanted to forgoe some performance for features such as security.  Can we quantify the performance degradation?  A task that in 6.0 seems instantaneous, so maybe takes 1/3 of second, might take 30 seconds in a later version.  That’s a 10,000% degradation of performance.  I can see someone accepting 10% or maybe even 50%.....but the company has to realize it’s more like 10,000% and people don't find that acceptable.

 

 ....next on my mind is there has to be something structurally wrong here.  I don't know how bad or good Microsofts SQL thing is, but it seems inconceivable that they would go forward with a product that takes 1/2 a minute so search a 2200 record database.  why would Microsoft have invented sql if it can even handle with fast speed a simple database of 2200?  something doesn't seem right there. 

 

It would be interesting to do benchmarks.  Run say 6.0 and v11 on a medium power machine with the same bunch of other programs running and do a number of tests.  if the performance is only 10 or 20% worse, they hey, i'm just completely exaggerating and shouldn't be listened to....however i'm thinking tests like searches etc will be 1000's of percent slower.  You say you don’t want to compare old vs new however that is the reality for your customer; performance is the go/no go determinant in the whether the product is usable.  We want to compare because we don’t’ want waste time moving to another version that is 10,000% slower than 6.0.  So how do they compare in benchmarking, 6.0 to V11? 

 

As a biz knob with a flare for branding, this is a often repeated situation.  The ship has sailed on just telling everyone its a great product buy....it’s more like disaster recovery in what and how your firm should communicate with the market.   The brand can be saved, but will depend on how Sage communicates to the market.  imo it needs some bold statements and action not denial.  Right now sales are happening based on the brand/goodwill, but every slow version you sell takes another nick out of the brand - eventually it will be worthless.   Re-releasing and supporting 6.0 would be a start or making available benchmarks, assuming v11 is in fact fast.  I’d suggest an “Act Classic”, 6.5….old software tweaked to work on Vista and with newer pda’s

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Country: USA

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Taking 30 seconds to do a lookup isn't normal behavior.  Send me a private message with your contact information.  I will call you personally and look into the performance issue.
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Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"


@objectivist wrote:


It would be interesting to do benchmarks.  Run say 6.0 and v11 on a medium power machine with the same bunch of other programs running and do a number of tests.  if the performance is only 10 or 20% worse, they hey, i'm just completely exaggerating and shouldn't be listened to....however i'm thinking tests like searches etc will be 1000's of percent slower.  You say you don’t want to compare old vs new however that is the reality for your customer; performance is the go/no go determinant in the whether the product is usable.  We want to compare because we don’t’ want waste time moving to another version that is 10,000% slower than 6.0.  So how do they compare in benchmarking, 6.0 to V11? 

 


 

 Let me tell you a true story. The first client that I converted to ACT! 2005 did so because they worked with the Notes/History tab open and it could take up to 10 seconds to move from contact to contact and have the correct Notes/History displayed. Their lookups were also slow and their database was only about 12,000 contact records. With ACT! 2005 on the same machines, moving from contact to contact with Notes or History open took less that a second. They are now on ACT! 2008 and it's even faster. Bottom line, ACT! 6 had become unusable to them and ACT! 2005 resolved their problems.
 
 I don't know how much of your performance issues are perception or real. I only know that all three of the systems that I use on a daily basis do not have better specs than your system and the oldest is significantly poorer yet I don't see anything like the dalays you talk about. In another posting you indicated that your processor is an AMD processor and as I indicated in response, I suspect that the AMD microcode does a poor job of working with the Microsoft .Net Framework.
 
For some users, ACT! 6 was and is, with all its problems, adequate and until they want to move to Vista or Office 2007 should have no problems continuing to use ACT! 6. However, ACT! 6 had severe limitations in the size of database it could handle and ACT! 2005 and later will handle much larger databases. I have another client that has a database of over 100,000 contacts and has not problems. ACT! 6 could not work with a database that size.
 
If ACT! 6 does everything you want, keep using it. But, with all due respect, I think your characterization of ACT! 2009 as poorly written software is off base.
 
 
Roy Laudenslager
Retired ACT! Certified Consultant
ACT! Report Expert
Durkin Impact Report Designer
New Member
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Country: United States

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

Roy

 

I am sure that there are some people in some places who are doing things that couldn't be done with ACT 6 that they are doing with later versions. The reason I started this discussion is that I was frustrated by The time it took me to do simple everyday ACT functions...

 

CTRL-L to open a schedule activity window (26 sec)

 

From The monthly calendar view click on The groups icon on The vertical bar to The left first changes view to contacts, now waiting for The groups to come up, and even get to watch a display that says loading while The dots on The bottom of The display cycle. (27 sec)

 

Clear an activity from The calendar view.- find, highlight and click on The checkbox to close activity -1-2 sec to open The clear activity window. Type in a 2 word comment/detail and click on OK. Up pops The hour glass, hey folks look at me I'm twiddling my thumb. Go to look at Windows Task Manager while I'm waiting. The other apps that are running all work fine. sqlsrvr.exe is doing something, I'm not sure what, but until it steps up higher that The system idle process, nothing is changing except The hourglass (2 min 41 sec)

 

These benchmarks on my system with my database 50 Mb (750 records) are all from 5 minutes ago. I used The word poorly written as I am at a loss to explain why everything takes as long as it does. There have been a variety of ideas and observations tossed around. Bottom line is this new improved product has a workflow that is not possible to live with (for me) Having read other comments on other threads, I feel that I am not The only one with performance issues. My computer may be old, it may be running XP Pro (not Vista), I am still using a 2003 version of Office. All of The things that I need to do I can do with what I have. I have, and I will.

 

I expect things that are well written to work well. As this product does not work well it must by default be less than well written, although I will grant that there exists The possibility that it is in fact well written and my problem is due to The fact that I haven't downloaded The magic patch to fix something I didn't know was broken. That's why I started this process in The first place. So far no one seems to be able to tell me anything that would cause The program to run slowly, stop responding etc. So I am left with The question - Is this a well written product? Can't prove it by me.

 

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Country: Canada

Re: ACT 2009 Slow to do almost everything and often "stops responding"

I am currently using v11 and looking to replace my laptop.  Most, if not all, reasonably priced laptops have 5400 RPM HDD's so I will be focussing my search on more affordable options such as processor speed, RAM, Bus speed and cache size.

 

Can anyone offer any notebook feature recommendations for use with v11?  Certainly a dual core processor is preferred, but is there a specific Intel or AMD version that will provide the better performance along with Bus speeds and cache size?

 

I need to change laptops anyways and know that I have several registry issues which I have assumed to be causing the almost unbearably slow performance with the latest ACT! so I am hoping that this will solve my current inefficiencies.

 

Thanks in advance,

AL