Developer Division Performance Engineering blog

News and commentary on developing scalable Windows applications with Visual Studio

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  • Blog Post: Help Make Visual Studio Faster

    One of the most difficult things about our job is trying to decipher why Visual Studio is slow for a customer. Often it starts with a vague complaint (e.g. "Visual Studio is sluggish") which we then have to narrow down to a particular action that's slow, and try and get a profile. Then we have to look...
  • Blog Post: Performance Troubleshooting Article and VS2010 SP1 Change

    Jason Zander just posted an article on Performance Troubleshooting Article and VS2010 SP1 Change , where he talks about some changes we made in SP1 and links to an article on Visual Studio (Performance) Troubleshooting . Check it out and let us know if it helps, and what other type of information would...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2010 Survey

    We'd like to know what you think about Visual Studio 2010. We are especially interested in hearing about your experience with regards to performance , reliability , and quality . The more details you share with us in this survey, the better we can understand your experience and apply what we learn...
  • Blog Post: VS2010 Performance and Bad Video Drivers/Hardware - Redux

    Since we shipped Visual Studio 2010 we've continued to have a small but notable series of complaints about performance that we've been able to attribute to bugs in video drivers and GPUs. The issue first came up back during VS 2010 beta in October of 2009 . Since then we've learned that while old...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2010 runs faster when the Windows Automation API 3.0 is installed

    If you're running Visual Studio 2010 on XP or Vista you may benefit from installing this upgrade: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/981741 Applications that use Windows Automation APIs can significantly decrease Microsoft Visual Studio IntelliSense performance if Windows Automation API 3.0 is not installed...
  • Blog Post: Are you a candidate to run Visual Studio 2010 on a 64-bit OS?

    Brian Harry's just posted an article on configuring an ideal Visual Studio development machine. You can read about it here: http://blogs.msdn.com/bharry/archive/2010/04/29/your-visual-studio-2010-dream-machine.aspx . By the way, if you scroll down and peruse the comments that customers have posted there...
  • Blog Post: Measuring Processor Utilization and Queuing Delays in Windows applications

    Continuing my answer to the mail I received recently from Uriel Carrasquilla… Uri’s note, reprinted in the previous post , refers to an "issue" associated with the current technique for measuring processor utilization in Windows. As my reply mentioned, these are documented and well-understood issues...
  • Blog Post: Statistical Process Control Techniques in Performance Monitoring and Alerting

    Being focused on the upcoming release of Visual Studio 2010 for the past six months or so, I, unfortunately, have been neglecting to blog about it. Before I get back to the series of blog posts I started about writing in parallel programming, I thought I’d first answer the mail. Concerning a recent...
  • Blog Post: Looking at Virtual Memory Usage

    Brian Harry is continuing a great series of posts on VS2010 performance, you can read the latest in that series here ; where Brian talks about the issues we've been seeing around Virtual Memory Exhaustion and what we're doing to address it.
  • Blog Post: Improvements in Intellisense post Beta 2

    Brian Harry has posted a discussion of Intellisense performance improvements in VS2010 that we've made since Beta 2, including bothe before and after videos. He also touches a little on the massive performance effort we're making as a division to address the performance issues identified by our external...
  • Blog Post: Improving the Start-up Performance of the WPF and Silverlight Designer in Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2

    I wanted to let you know about a last minute change that went into VS 2010 Beta 2 that you can use to improve the startup performance for the WPF and Silverlight Designer. The change went in late and it was a little risky, so we decided to leave it off until we had a chance to do some more testing with...
  • Blog Post: VS2010 Performance and Bad Video Drivers/Hardware

    [Note, this post is superceeded by a newer post here .] We’ve received a few performance complaints around Visual Studio 2010 (Beta 2) performance that can be traced to old video drivers or GPU virtualization issues. If you’re seeing slow / broken screen updates verify you have the...
  • Blog Post: Tell us about VS2010 Beta2

    Last week we shipped Beta 2 for broad distribution. Many of you have already sent us comments and improvement suggestions (thanks!) At this point we are down to our final set of bug fixing, perf tuning, etc. We’re very interested in your feedback so we can take action on it before we ship the final...
  • Blog Post: Parallel Scalability Isn’t Child’s Play, Part 3: The Problem with Fine-Grained Parallelism

    In the last blog entry in this series , I introduced the model for parallel program scalability proposed by Neil Gunther, which I praised for being a realistic antidote to more optimistic, but better known, formulas. Gunther’s model adds a new parameter to the more familiar Amdahl’s law. The additional...
  • Blog Post: Are we taking advantage of Parallelism?

    Recently, a colleague of mine, Mark Friedman, posted a blog titled “ Parallel Scalability Isn’t Child’s Play ” in which he reviewed the merits of Amdahl Law vs. Gunther’s Law for determining the practical limits to parallelization. I would not argue with the premise of Mark’s blog that Parallelism is...
  • Blog Post: Parallel Scalability Isn’t Child’s Play, Part 2: Amdahl’s Law vs. Gunther’s Law

    Part 1 of this series of blog entries discussed results from simulating the performance of a massively parallel SIMD application on several alternative multi-core architectures. These results were reported by researchers at Sandia Labs and publicized in a press release. Neil Gunther, my colleague from...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2010 Hardware Requirements

    Soma’s been talking about the upcoming Visual Studio 2010 release on his blog , which means I’m starting to get questions about what type of hardware you’re going to need to run VS2010 on. Unfortunately, I can’t give you an official answer yet (other than to say, it depends on what you’re doing –...
  • Blog Post: PDC2008 preConference Workshop

    Over the past several weeks, I have been working overtime developing a presentation on web application performance to be given at the upcoming Professional Developer’s Conference (PDC), which is next week in Los Angeles. This is partly why I have been remiss about blogging this month. At least, that...
  • Blog Post: Mainstream NUMA and the TCP/IP stack: Final Thoughts

    This is a continuation of Part IV of this article posted here . Note that a final version of a white paper tying this series of five blog entries together (and a Powerpoint presentation on the subject) are attached. For many years, the effort to improve network performance on Windows and other...
  • Blog Post: Mainstream NUMA & the TCP/IP stack: Part 2: Programming ccNUMA machines

    This is a continuation of Part I of this article posted here . In Part 1 of this article, we looked at the capacity issues that are driving architectural changes in the TCP/IP networking stack. While network interfaces are increasing in throughput capacity, processor speeds in the multi-core era are...
  • Blog Post: Lessons from the test lab: investigating a pleasant surprise

    This post describes our recent investigation into an interesting performance problem: benchmarks that we were surprised to find running significantly faster than we expected on new hardware. Along the way we discuss useful benchmarking tools, how to validate results, and why it pays to know exactly what...
  • Blog Post: Mainstream NUMA and the TCP/IP stack: Part I.

    One of the intriguing aspects of the onset of the many-core processor era is the necessity of using parallel programming techniques to reap the performance benefits of this and future generations of processor chips. Instead of significantly faster processors, we are getting more of them packaged on a...
  • Blog Post: Introduction to Control Theory and Its Application to Computing Systems -- Part 1

    Part 1 of the slide presentation.
  • Blog Post: Introduction to Control Theory and Its Application to Computing Systems -- Part 2

    Part 2 of the slide presentation.
  • Blog Post: Introduction to Control Theory and Its Application to Computing Systems

    Our DDPE colleague Joe Hellerstein, along with Tarek Abdelzaher (University of Illinois), Yixin Diao (IBM), Chenyang Lu (Washington University), and Xiaoyun Zhu (HP) , is presenting a seminar this week at ACM Sigmetrics. The session Abstract follows: Abstract. Feedback control is central...
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