>XML Schema Editing Performance and Eclipse Bug Day

>I work with some fairly significant size XML Schemas every day. Unfortunately, versions of Eclipse Web Standard Tools before version 3.0 have some significant performance problems when it comes to working with large xml files. It’s understandable considering most of the XML schemas that I see used as test beds are only about 200 to 300 lines long, and maybe have 30 or 40 complexTypes and elements at the most.

Compare that with B2B standards produced by OAGi, HR-XML, ACORD, STAR, and AIAG, which can easily run into 2000 or more. The STAR Components.xsd for STAR 5 comes in at 18,217 lines long and contains about 300 complexTypes. The OAGi Components.xsd runs about 4000 lines long, but is also broken into several sub files that import other XSDs. If you try to truely work with these files in versions before 3.0 and aren’t using a computer with a multi-core processor you might as well take a nap. Many the of peformance problems have to do with when events are fired off and how many of them are fired at any one time.

Thankfully, the situation is getting better with the latest versions of Web Tools 3.0, particularly Web Tools 3.0M5. There still are some performance problems, but they are almost unnoticeable compared to prior versions. The biggest peformance issue that still remains is with the Code Folding within the Structured Text Editor. With this turned on it can take 2 to 3 minutes to load the STAR components.xsd file on a multi-core processor. However, with code folding turned off, the files load up in about 3 to 5 seconds.

So, my recommendation at this time is unless you really need it and aren’t planning on working with large structured documents, turn off the code folding. Most of what it provides can be handled using the Outline View anyways.

There are other areas in Web Standard Tools that need some love. The Web Services Explorer is one such item from a performance standpoint. It’s painfully slow with large industry standard schemas and wsdls. So much so, that I tend to recommend users look at SOAP UI as a free alternative. If I can free up some time this summer, I may see what patches I can help provide to speed up the Web Services Explorer.

Unfortunately, the Web Tools committers are stretched pretty thin, and do what they can. This is where the user community can help out. If you have a problem, let them know about it, but more importantly help them identify where the problem is and how to reproduce it. If you have the programming chops, submit a patch. Those are always appreciated.

With that said, don’t forget that February 29th, is eclipse bug day. Might I suggest helping to squash a web tools bug or two.

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One Response to >XML Schema Editing Performance and Eclipse Bug Day

  1. >in PDE, we turn off code folding by default exactly for the same reason. We allow users to turn on code folding via preferences.

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