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Great Plains running slow

Posted on 2013-01-14
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Last Modified: 2013-06-09
Hi,
We have a Citrix farm (XenApp 5.0) at Chicago Data Center of around 20 (Win 2003 std)servers. We have around 4 servers which are serving Great Plains10. Each two servers are load balanced for one GP applications (Lets say GP1 and GP2). We have two SQL servers (2005 Versions) running on two separate VM.

We had one more Citrix Farm (XenApp 4.0) at PPR Data center where there were same kind of setup but on Physical servers. We performed P2V and created all the VM in the new farm. GP installations are new and fresh.

Now users are complaining that they are getting Great Plains running very slow. They are actually complaining about two things-- i> when they are pressing tab button to move around from one field to another field its taking too much of time, ii> when they are fetching some image file inside Great Plains, its taking long time.

The images are stored in a file server which is in PPR. We checked network latency and it shows there is no issue at all from that side. We then performed compacting SQL database and that too didn't solve the issue.

We tried to launch the Great Plains from the server itself, its running slow there also.

There are two/three instances of time everyday when users are facing Great Plains running extremely slow for some 10 to 15 minutes before it goes back to its original speed which itself is very slow.

We checked that for all the time, each server is taking 10-18 sessions at a time. We even tried uninstalling Symantec AV, but it didn't solve the issue either. We checked all event logs but there nothing is found.

Application is used from Mumbai, India as well as US. The problem felt everywhere.

Need your help ........
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Question by:bubaibhatta
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Expert Comment

by:Steve Endow
ID: 38776919
Hi,

It can be quite difficult to identify and resolve Dynamics GP performance issues in a simple local LAN environment, so figuring out the cause in your complex multi-site environment may be very difficult.

I guess I can offer a few things to start.

1. You indicated that launching Dynamics GP directly on the server was slow.  If this is the case, then I would recommend resolving this issue first before even looking at other sites or Citrix server.  If it doesn't run okay on the server, then it probably isn't going to run any better elsewhere.

2. When you say it is "running slow" on the server, what exactly does that mean?  Is it really slow to launch and display the login prompt?  Or is it really slow when you attempt to login?  Or is it slow after you login?

3. Which exact GP 10 version are you running?  When you launch GP you should see the version number.  Or you can open Help -> About and get the full version.  It should be something like 10.00.xxxx.

4. Are you using shared dictionaries?  i.e. in your Dynamics.set file, do you have any of the dictionaries pointed to a network path?  On your Citrix servers, I would recommend making sure you only have local copies of the dictionaries.  Some companies can run fine with shared dictionaries, but I've seen other clients have numerous problems with it, despite a supposedly fast network.


Depending on your GP 10 service pack / version, there is a known performance issue with GP 10 SP5.

http://community.dynamics.com/product/gp/gptechnical/b/gpmohammad/archive/2010/12/19/slow-login-performance-for-gp-10-0-sp5-and-gp-2010-sp1.aspx

I had a client on GP 2010 SP1, and the performance was horrible.  Once they upgraded to GP 2010 SP3, the performance issues disappeared.


Let me know if any of these items seem relevant.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38777634
Thanks Steve,

I am going to reply point by point...

2. Its actually slow once the an user logged in to the GP. Users are generally feeling slowness once they are changing field with TAB key inside the program. There is one option of fetching image file from inside the program, it takes at least 40 to 50 second. Incidentally, the images are stored in file server and that file server is kept at PPR. We tried to fetch same image file outside GP by using UNC path from the same GP server, we get those file very fast (10 Second Max.).

3. GP Version number is 10. 00.1411

4. I checked the Dynamics.set file. it shows all the .dic file linked from the same folder where the set file is available.

5. Additionally, we had a doubt over the SQL server that is running the database for GP. Its running significantly slow at all the time and at the same time when I checked the server performance, its showing average 60% of CPU usage and around 60 - 80% of RAM usage. Is this of any significant input?

6. We observed that even there are less number of users at the GP server, the program is running slow.

Needed your help please ......
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38778019
One more to add in this, of late I found lots of Dexterity Events has been logged with an Event ID 1000 in all the servers running GP.
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38778907
Your Point #5 is the critical key, IMHO. If dynamics can't access the data in SQL or can only do so very slowly Dynamics will be slow. Dynamics is in essence a pretty way to display the SQL data, with the SQL databases doing the real work and the main engine behind the application. Focus your efforts on why your SQL is slow--what do you mean when you conclude that it is running slow? And are you talking about SQL server as SQL that runs on its own server or SQL server as the name of the application (could mean either)?
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Expert Comment

by:Steve Endow
ID: 38779583
Hi,

A SQL Server dedicated to Dynamics GP will generally have very little utilization, maybe 5-10% CPU utilization spikes at the most.  

If you are seeing an average of 60% CPU utilization, that is very unusual, and I would suspect something other than Dynamics GP is causing that utilization.

In theory, Dynamics GP should perform okay with 50-60% server utilization, but I would recommend checking which processes are consuming the CPU on your SQL server machine.  

If you see that SQL Server is using alot of CPU, then I would look further at the SQL databases and processes, as I strongly suspect that it is not the Dynamics GP application that is consuming that much CPU.  Please post a screen shot of your Windows Task Manager window showing the Processes tab, sorted by CPU utilization.

Also, you should check disk utilization on the SQL Server--that can be just as problematic as high CPU utilization.

If you have any "external" reports or queries that are querying your GP databases, I recommend that you stop running those at all locations to see if it helps.  I've seen Access reports and Crystal reports against GP databases that are poorly written and cause GP clients to become slow and unresponsive.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38781546
Hi,

Yes, there are other SQL instances running on the SQL server other than GP. Here is the screen shots of the task manager that you asked:

CPU Usage 2
CPU Usage 2Memory Usage
At this moment we are concentrating on SQL Server. I would like to know if there is any checklist that we require to perform on SQL server in this case. This would ensure that we are following the correct path.

Thanks for all your reply.....
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38782334
What else other than Dynamics is using SQL server?
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38782391
There are 6 instances SQL of GP is running on this server. We have one instance of SQL data base of Citrix is running on this server....

Today we actually saw that its CPU usage has gone up to 100% and it was almost frozen  for all the day. Users were also having very slow of GP running. Ultimately we reboot the server and then we could log on to it remotely. Post reboot the server is still running slow.

Please give some idea as to what can be the cause?

BTW we tried to disable the Symantec AV, it still does not show any difference.....
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by:lionelmm
ID: 38782420
Is this an actual physical server or is it one of the VM's? Either way how much RAM and CPU does this server have?
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38782438
I just re-read your original question, in which you said
                   {We had one more Citrix Farm (XenApp 4.0) at PPR Data center where there were same kind of setup but on Physical servers. We performed P2V and created all the VM in the new farm. GP installations are new and fresh. Now users are complaining that they are getting Great Plains running very slow.}
Is this when the trouble started?
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38782608
Exactly, after we performed P2V activities, we started facing these issues. All the servers are having 2VCPUs and 4 GB RAM with Windows 2003 std version (32 Bit).

We are not been able to remote log in to the server even after re-booting now. We checked the network, its working fine there at CDW. There all the Citrix servers working fine and they is no Network issue there.
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Expert Comment

by:Steve Endow
ID: 38783078
Hi,

You say that you are running 6 INSTANCES of SQL Server on a virtual machine that is only allocated 2 processors and 4 GB of RAM?

I don't use Citrix, but relative to the virtual machines I run, I am pretty confident that 4GB is insufficient for that type of environment.

Task Manager indicates that your SQL Server processes are consuming 3.2GB of RAM, which I'm assuming is not enough to properly service your databases, so your VM is probably swapping to disk like crazy.  

I don't know how large your databases are, but I would recommend trying to increase the SQL Server RAM to 16 GB or even 32GB to see if that helps.  It probably wouldn't hurt to allocate 4 CPUs to your virtual SQL Server as well.


Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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by:lionelmm
ID: 38783625
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/hardware/gg487508

Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003 Memory Support. The maximum amount of memory that can be supported on Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003 is also 4 GB. However, Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition supports 32 GB of physical RAM and Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition supports 64 GB of physical RAM using the PAE feature.

The virtual address space of processes and applications is still limited to 2 GB unless the /3GB switch is used in the Boot.ini file. When the physical RAM in the system exceeds 16 GB and the /3GB switch is used, the operating system will ignore the additional RAM until the /3GB switch is removed. This is because of the increased size of the kernel required to support more Page Table Entries. The assumption is made that the administrator would rather not lose the /3GB functionality silently and automatically; therefore, this requires the administrator to explicitly change this setting.

The /3GB switch allocates 3 GB of virtual address space to an application that uses IMAGE_FILE_LARGE_ADDRESS_AWARE in the process header. This switch allows applications to address 1 GB of additional virtual address space above 2 GB.
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by:Steve Endow
ID: 38783689
Hi lionelmm,

I'm not sure what your XP memory post is referring to, but since the OP did not mention his SQL Server OS, and has not indicated that he is running XP, I am assuming that he is running Windows Server on his SQL machine.

A production Dynamics GP SQL Server should only be run on Windows Server, and there shouldn't be any issue having 16GB on that OS.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38783728
What did you use to create the virtual machines, what did you convert P2V with? I am a relative newbie to VM's but have made several for Windows Server 2003 from scratch and have run into a few resources, driver issues. What is the difference between the physical resources these servers had before you converted them to virtual and what they have now? I also suggested you as a moderator to add additional topic selections to your question so you can get some virtual machine experts looking at your dilemma.
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by:lionelmm
ID: 38783733
Yes he did--he said it is Windows Server 2003. and the post I added said "...Windows Server 2003 is also 4 GB.."
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38783758
Hi,

In our case, all the servers are running Windows 2003 std with 32 bit OS.

We identified one GP Database called SQLDYR taking too much of computing resource on SQL server. We have decided to remove that database and put that into one more VM separately. I'll post the result once that is done.
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Accepted Solution

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Steve Endow earned 500 total points
ID: 38783791
Hi,

I missed the detail about Server 2003 32-bit.  You should definitely upgrade to a newer version that is 64-bit, like Windows Server 2008 R2--but you'll also want to move to 64-bit SQL Server as well.  Trying to run a large production SQL environment on 4GB isn't realistic.

Just make sure to check compatibility with GP 10 before you try and upgrade SQL Server.

http://gp.rosebizincblogs.com/2011/01/sql-server-and-dynamics-gp-version-compatibility.html

You'll apparently want to be on SP 5 before upgrading to SQL 2008 R2.

And if you are upgrading your SQL Server, you might as well plan to upgrade GP to move to a supported version.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38784248
Steve, that link you provided is it that to the company you work for? I am looking for a new partner to upgrade GP for a client of mine?
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by:Steve Endow
ID: 38784410
Hi lionelmm,

No, I have my own company, Precipio Services.

You can contact me at steveendow@gmail.com if you would like to chat about your customer.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 38784912
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by:Steve Endow
ID: 38784946
Hi lionelmm,

Yes, that is my web site.

Thanks,

Steve Endow
Dynamics GP Certified Trainer
Dynamics GP Certified IT Professional
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38846518
HiAll,

Thanks all for the support. We upgraded the database and found the issue gone. We didnt reason out the issue anyway, but upgradation solved the issue.
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Author Comment

by:bubaibhatta
ID: 38846522
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for bubaibhatta's comment #a38846518

for the following reason:

Based on our own decision, we find the issue got solved.
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Expert Comment

by:truptis2
ID: 39232680
Hi

We are facing similar performance issue after moving setup to VMWare.

May I know what the solution -'upgraded database' referring to?
Upgrading SQL Server to higher version, Moving SQLDYR to separate VM?

We are strugling from 6 months and about to give up on entire setup :(

Need urgent help.....
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