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8/15 Mini-Update: Performance Improvements for Large Games

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Riley D.
Roll20 Team
We've pushed out a series of performance improvements this morning that should help speed-up initial load times for large games (those with hundreds of Characters or more, for example). In particular: There was a bug where the application was sometimes downloading a much large size of image to display for the thumbnail in the Journal view for Characters. Now the "mini" size will always be used. (This may reduce the amount of data that has to be downloaded when your game initially starts up). All Handouts in the game were mistakenly being rendered at startup time, instead of waiting until the first time the Handout was actually opened. This has been fixed. All Attribute views (the list of attributes that appears on the "Attributes and Abilities" tab of the Character view) were being rendered in the background on startup. This could lead to a significant slowdown and stuttering for games with lots of Characters, especially if the game is using a complicated sheet that has a lot of attributes per character. We've now made it so that this rendering doesn't happen until needed. In a test game, this caused a 4-5 second "stuttering startup" problem to disappear entirely. Previously, tokens and maps may have loaded much large image sizes than needed when they were first rendered. The correct size would later be downloaded and used, leading to wasted data being downloaded, and the possibility that the token or map might not display at all as quickly as it could have. Now, we always load the "thumb" image size for tokens and maps initially, then download a correct, larger size if needed. This should cause tokens to load much faster the first time they are seen. Maps will also load very fast initially, although it will be a 'low resolution' version. Then the system will download the higher-resolution version in the background, and show the higher-resolution image once it's done downloading. Note that once these images have been downloaded at least once they will be cached on your computer so you will no longer see this swapping occur, this just allows something to show up on the screen faster the very first time you visit a page and see the map for the first time. Enjoy!
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The Aaron
Forum Champion
API Scripter
Awesome!
1471273909
Gold
Forum Champion
Thanks for the updates. The quick-load low-res maps and tokens should be a huge boon for one game I'm playing where multiple players have been seeing either nothing, or the page background color, for up to a few minutes at the start of the game (on what is known to be a large page with many large map tiles). My other games have already been loading fairly quickly (a matter of seconds), even with more than 100 characters/ handouts/ journals, it will be interesting to see if they load even faster now.
Testing out one of my larger campaigns, it definitely feels a bit quicker to load, and quicker upon load to access the character journals.  For reference, :5e Shaped Sheet, 150-200 total character sheets, ~12 handouts, 20+ maps (some of which are very large).
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Edited 1471296670
Ziechael
Forum Champion
Sheet Author
API Scripter
Looking forward to testing this on game night, my 20 month game was getting a bit laggy on load :) Thanks [edit] certainly seemed a bit quicker on testing but that could just be my eternal optimism ;)
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Edited 1471316445
Scott C.
Forum Champion
Sheet Author
API Scripter
Woot, does the journal stuff apply to tables as well? And global macros come to think of it.
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Stephen L.
Pro
Marketplace Creator
Sheet Author
API Scripter
Nice. This will definitely help some of my players with slower Internet who sometimes don't see all the loaded map elements at first.
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DM Cody
Pro
Marketplace Creator
This is all great great news! Kudos guys.
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Natha
Roll20 Production Team
Sheet Author
API Scripter
I really felt a difference in my biggest campaign. Thanks to the devs !
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Gold
Forum Champion
Update: we played the big campaign with the huge maps. We saw the difference. It works. We talked about it as it was loading from thumbnail to high res. Everyone saw the grass becoming high resolution, and one of the players was on the "blurry grass" for longer than the others (probably slower connection, or slower computer). Getting the blurry grass happened almost instantly, and it's better than seeing nothing, and lets us get started with the game without confusing the one laggy player.
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Riley D.
Roll20 Team
Glad to hear it's working! :-)
1472152240
Thank you very much.  While this may seem completely unsexy and boring, this is the kind of improvement that really revs my turbo-nerd engine.  Keep up the good work!