An Explanation On Why OpenOffice Is Slow While Loading?

OpenOffice is a Free and Open Source Office Application Suit and a most notable open source alternative to Microsoft Office. Many enterprise as well as home users have started using OpenOffice and the version 3.0 is better than ever. However, one thing that bothers people in OpenOffice is the slower load time. Even though it is packed with features, people tend to complain this slower startup. Good news is, QuickStart makes it load faster and here is why.

OpenOffice

Performance Bottleneck in OpenOffice 3.1

OpenOffice has been around for a quite sometime (close to 20 years) and a lot of code base (old and new) may invoke numerous libraries. A OpenOffice wiki claims that OpenOffice processes too much of code while loading and there may be too many libraries that are getting loaded. A combination of Microsoft VisualStudio Debugger and SysInternals (now Microsoft Company) ProcessMonitor, tools give you this amazing insight. These tools can unearth a lot of inside details that are closely related to underlying Operation System.

  • During Cold Startup of OpenOffice 3.1, more than 80% of the load time goes in File I/O operations making it a slow starter.
  • But, During Warm Startup of OpenOffice 3.1, only about 20% of the load time goes in File I/O operations making it mostly CPU bound. Also, the load time is drastically reduced.
  • When Antivirus Real-time Protection is enabled, the load time still increases.

Here is a very nice CPU usage, File I/O operations, Network Operations, memory Operations etc versus Time Graph that gives a very detailed view of what’s happening during load time. These tests are done on Pentium M 1.8GHz with 1GB RAM, Win XP SP3 on Toshiba Laptop with Norton AV. So, test results are subjective.

Cold Startup of OpenOffice 3.1

Antivirus real time protection has a significant impact on Cold Start. Please note the numerous File I/O spikes throughout load time time line.

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OpenOffice.org_DEV300m40_System_Activities

Warm Startup of OpenOffice 3.1

Antivirus real time protection has a minimal impact on Warm Start. A quicker load time, thanks to less File I/O operations.

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OpenOffice.org_DEV300m40_System_Activities_WarmStartup

The issue of slow Cold Startup has been an issue with OpenOffice and Here is a history of Load Time of OpenOffice right from version1.1.5 till release 3.0 (Courtesy OOONinja). Load time has been increasing steadily but at the same time, we should note that OpenOffice gets many additional features and may contribute to more heavy startup time.

all_means_cold

all_means_warm

Whatever may be the Load Time, We still love OpenOffice :) Do You? Please watch out for more OpenOffice related articles only on Open-Tube.

Source: OpenOffice Wiki

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6 comments

  1. […] earlier post on why OpenOffice is slow? while loading was one of the reviews that we carried out recently. In this post, we review […]

  2. […] our previous posts on OpenOffice, here they are – OpenOffice Writer – a brief review, A note on why OpenOffice is slow while loading. There is more coming up, so watch out this […]

  3. Piotr Shirokov says:

    I don’t think that OO starts slowly. It takes a 10-sec while even on my old single-CPU/core machine with 1 GB RAM (MS Office loads in a comparable time).

  4. Janeie says:

    This is all well and good but it does not explain why making certain network changes will cut the start up time by a factor of 10. In face for some people simply disconnecting the nic will correct the start up time. I’m sure there must be simple config changes that can be made but oOo appears to be mute.

  5. JAck says:

    Loads very fast when network connection is disabled. And very slow if you got any network connection enabled. This ruined Ooo. Someone of producing geeks needs to be terminated.

  6. Steve Barel says:

    Great post, very interesting..

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