MIS Systems Thread, Individual Reports take forever to generate in Technical; Is it just us, or does this happen to everyone?
I know it's a very large template (about 85 pages ...
1st April 2011, 12:36 PM #1
Individual Reports take forever to generate
Is it just us, or does this happen to everyone?
I know it's a very large template (about 85 pages with 10 results on each page), but surely it's just a mail merge?!
It is literally taking 10 minutes per student to generate the report, it's as though SIMS downloads the data every time it starts on a new student, it's extremely irritating!
I'm actually considering downloading the data myself in future and using a mail merge, as this is just ridiculous! The only problem then of course is that I can't batch upload them to the SIMS DMS.
So has anybody found a way of speeding them up?
IDG Tech News
1st April 2011, 12:48 PM #2
I cannot offer any specific advice in speeding up your printing.
However, I can assure you that this is not an issue here. We do have a very efficient SIMS server and the workstations used to generate AM7 and Profiles Reports are also pretty high spec.
Could it be server and/or workstation issues that cause the slowness of your printing process?
1st April 2011, 12:55 PM #3
I'm thinking machine spec may be a contributing factor to it (it's the actual generation of the files as opposed to the printing that takes time), as my boss' machine generates them ever so slightly faster (but they still take about 8 minutes each).
Originally Posted by Sivadam
However, I still think that there is some serious issue with the efficiency of the system: it should not take a 3.00Ghz Dual Core PC with 1GB of RAM 10 minutes to perform a single mail merge! And in fact it doesn't take anywhere near that long if I do perform a mail merge based on a spreadsheet containing all the data I need from SIMS.
If I could find a way of bulk uploading them to students linked documents, I'd ditch individual reports in favour of a Word mail merge as it's infinitely quicker, easier and less prone to random template corruption... unfortunately I don't though
EDIT: I just thought I should add (before Sivadam get's angry!) that I'm not slating SIMS, I'm fully prepared to accept the problem may not be with SIMS itself but rather our environment, however until I can prove otherwise, it appears that the way SIMS generates reports is very inefficient...
Last edited by LosOjos; 1st April 2011 at 01:05 PM.
1st April 2011, 01:31 PM #4
Please log a call - it shouldn't take that long.
1st April 2011, 01:35 PM #5
Hi Phil, we receive support from a local support team, should I log a call with them (who will pass it on to Capita) or with Capita directly?
Originally Posted by PhilNeal
1st April 2011, 01:38 PM #6
Last edited by Sivadam; 1st April 2011 at 01:43 PM.
1st April 2011, 01:47 PM #7
It was meant to be a bit tongue-in-cheek; you can't deny the fact that EduGeek regulars await your "heated" response to any post that appears to slate SIMS lol
Originally Posted by Sivadam
Eager not to let this thread veer too far off topic, so I'm going to log a call with local support team and see what they have to say, in the meantime I'm going to try and find a quicker machine to run them on, see how much difference that makes....
1st April 2011, 02:05 PM #8
I realised that you were 'tongue in cheek' - and my comments were aimed at others as much as yourself! Can't keep my audience disappointed can I?
Good Luck with the problem!
I hope it is soon sorted for you.
Keep us informed as others have reported this as well!
Last edited by Sivadam; 1st April 2011 at 02:08 PM.
1st April 2011, 02:54 PM #9
You will need to go through your support team.
1st April 2011, 03:07 PM #10
How are your server resources? This sort of thing started happening after upgrading our ancient SIMS server to SQL2008 - many stressed office staff, a meeting with Business Mgr and LEA support team = shiny new server :-) and everyone happy.
1st April 2011, 03:30 PM #11
1st April 2011, 05:08 PM #12
If your local team solve the problem then drop me an email.
1st April 2011, 05:45 PM #13
We have had similiar issue with individual reports, if you have images as in logo's in your reports these can sometimes make the reports a bit large, you could try compressing the images this seemed to work here as reduced each report from 2.3 mb to about 730 kb, you could also try exporting them instead of printing them and then do file print and multiple select from word as it were only ever really had this issue with the SIM's Individual reports .
1st April 2011, 08:32 PM #14
Thanks for the reply, I have already compressed the images (a small school logo on each page, only about 15k per image) and I am exporting them ready to print (no choice, when it takes 24 hours to run off a year group it's difficult to plan exactly when to free up the printer!)
Originally Posted by Steven_Cleaver
2nd April 2011, 01:43 PM #15
Do let us know too
Originally Posted by PhilNeal
I was going to suggest the same things as Steven did.
A couple of other things, that may not make any difference, but check on memory usage on the PC at the time of run, is it going crazy, or perhaps there is some other process conflicting?
Try running it directly on the server, i've done that a few times, and it at least frees up the workstation.
I'm sure i've had someone fix this by simply recreating the template from scratch, and copy pasting the original data into it. Save, verify, save etc. and it seemed to work a little better, not sure why though. However, Word tables can be mashed up. Maybe one of the tags is broken but it still runs, just slower....
Try it on a broken down version of the template, with half as many pages, to see if it takes 4-5 mins instead. Maybe one half runs quicker...?
i don't suppose it co-incides with any other changes, such as change to server OS, client OS, version of office..?
A batch uploader would be great, and i'm sure there is a business object for it, but no-one is allowed to know about it, shh
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