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  1. #1
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
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    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share
    Hi

    I purchased recently two Macs, and these are the very first ones we (my wife and I) own. One is a White MacBook and the other is an iMac 20"

    We have 15000 pictures, so I killed 2 days getting the pictures organized, and importing them to a Library on a Shared drive. Its all there, working, but I feel like I am on a Windows 95 machine running on a 5x86 133Mhz, if you still remember those...

    The library is very very slow, not responsive at all. The Samba share should be okay, its sitting on a Linux server on the same LAN.

    What could be the problem? The amount of pictures, or the fact that its on the LAN? What can I do to solve it? I put much effort in it, and wanted to have the same library with my wife finally on our beautiful Macs, etc.

    Thanks for any suggestions,

    Ben

  2. #2
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share
    fleurya's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 18, 2006
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    Anytown, USA
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    4,925
    Specs:
    27" iMac 2.7GHz Core i5, iPhone 4S, 3rd gen iPad
    Probably the sheer number of pics since iPhoto essentially "displays" them all at once in photos. Is it that sluggish when in one album or event?

    Just a guess.
    "Give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others"

  3. #3
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
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    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Hi

    I have browsed and browsed, and it seems people have no problem with this amount of pictures. I am wondering if the problem is with Samba, or Samba and the amount together.

    All I know is that its sluggish, opening iPhoto takes over 15 seconds, when in events, scrolling takes forever, and response time is high, and I often see the "beachball".

    Any suggestion is welcome,

    Cheers

    Ben

  4. #4
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 05, 2007
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    502
    Have you performance tuned Samba on your Linux machine (some suggestions http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/samba...appb_01.html)? Have you performance tuned your TCP stack on OS X (some suggestions http://www.psc.edu/networking/projects/tcptune/)? It could have as much to do with the size/directory structure of your library as it is anything else.

    A better solution might be to get an external drive (if space is an issue) and share your library from the iMac. I've found that file sharing from the Mac is much faster than Samba.

  5. #5
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
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    94
    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Hi

    I just checked a Samba server at our Office, and it is much faster I must say.

    The server at home is actually on a different IP, but in the same pool. I have 8 static IPs at home, and the server has its own static IP, but we are behind the same router, so there is some kind of connection, just I guess it isnt fast enough. I will try to move the server to the same LAN, bringing it under the IP address of the home WiFi router, and forward ports from the router, so it can keep acting as a server, but still within the lan.

    I will try this at home, and report back.

    Here in the office, I got 7000kbyte/sec speeds, and at home I get 700kbyte/s. Thats 1/10th of the speed. The Cisco router cripples it I think.

    I will post back,

    Thanks

    Ben

  6. #6
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
    Posts
    94
    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Hi

    I just came back home, and did a test but the SAMBA performace is much better than I thought, just like in my Office.

    I also tried to use it with Xee, another image viewer, and It went much much smoother over the network. Because of this, I didnt bother the Samba server and didnt move it to my LAN.
    Any other suggestions? It seems Samba performance is just great.
    Two things i would be interested in.

    Does anyone have an iPhoto library on a Samba server? Mine is not in the Database format, but keeping my folder strucure, I guess that should not affect it at all.

    Does anyone have 15000 photos on an iPhoto library locally? How is the performance?

    I am thinking of two solutions. I will either use several libraries, to cut them down, lets say 5 or so libraries, and check the performance that way, however I wouldnt like that either, as its nicer to keep it together.

    Or I will omit the use of iPhoto completely. I just like the nice interface, and the ease of use, however, if its so slow, I will stick to Xee which is blazing fast over Samba even.

    Any suggestions are welcome,

    Cheers

    Ben

  7. #7
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
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    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    I verified the speed again on my home server, and its capping out at 2500 KB/s. I think thats still pretty low, so I moved it to my LAN, and the speed is the same.

    I am thinking of the following: Its either a slow drive, but thats unlikely, and secondly the WiFi must eat the connection.

    Any experiences in this field?

    Thanks

    Ben

  8. #8
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
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    94
    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Hi

    Not too many posts except by me.

    Anyways, I have thought and thought, and it seems Wireless G has this speed limit, not the samba server. its going with 2000-2500KByte, and that would be around 22 MBit, which is what a G wireless can bare is usual cases. Its supposed to carry 54MBit, but that of course nearly never happens.

    My new question is the following:

    Is 22MBit approximately enough for iPhoto to access the library?

    Thanks

    Ben

  9. #9
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
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    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    I guess this thread is dead, can be closed.

    The problem is still outstanding, but it seems I am one of the few ones who use Samba for iPhoto library.

    Cheers

    Ben

  10. #10
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share
    giulio's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 19, 2007
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    NY USA
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    How much ram do you have?

    Photos are compressed. To use the actual pictures, it must be decompressed in ram/swap. So figure the memory requirements are about 3x the file size.

    Guessing 2MB/image compressed, 6MB decompressed, x 15,000 images... that's 90 GB of working memory.

    Of course, iPhoto uses caches and thumbnails. But still... you get the idea.
    schweb This has to be one of the best threads ever in MF history...
    Cherokee This gets my vote for most innovative thread on Mac-Forums... ever.

  11. #11
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
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    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Quote Originally Posted by giulio View Post
    How much ram do you have?

    Photos are compressed. To use the actual pictures, it must be decompressed in ram/swap. So figure the memory requirements are about 3x the file size.

    Guessing 2MB/image compressed, 6MB decompressed, x 15,000 images... that's 90 GB of working memory.

    Of course, iPhoto uses caches and thumbnails. But still... you get the idea.
    Hi

    Right, but then how come others have no problem with 15,000 Images on their much slower Macs? Mine has 1GB of RAM by the way, nothing fancy, although in my pocket now I have another one, which will be installed tonight.

    Any experience with iPhoto and Samba would still be appreciated. I left it the way it is for now, as I do need some solution, even if slow.

    Thanks

    Ben

  12. #12
    iPhoto - Performance problems - 15000Pics over Samba share

    Member Since
    Jul 01, 2007
    Location
    Budapest, Hungary
    Posts
    94
    Specs:
    MacBook Air 1.6 - iMac 20" for the wife
    Hi

    I have performed another test. I plugged in my MacBook to my switch directly with a CAT5 cable, and iPhoto goes like a dream. Its fast, responsive, beautiful.

    I logged in to my SAMBA server, and checked the throughput on the LAN interface. While on WiFi, it sends data to the laptop at a speed of 2200KBit/sec and when on LAN, it sends 9000KBit/sec.

    Well, its kind of obvious, my Router is slow. Its a Netgear, supposed to support 54MBitx2 in Super or whatever mode. Can I make it faster somehow? It only gives me 22MBit/sec.

    If I buy an Airport station, will that increase the speed, and not only add to the looks of our apartment ?

    Will an Aiport station perform at the desired speeds if I also have other Windows PCs with 802.11g cards in them?

    Thanks

    Ben

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