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Does a CRM 2011 workflow in a WAIT STATE use system resources, specifically the async service?

Posted on 2014-10-02
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Last Modified: 2014-10-02
We have some workflows waiting on approvals. They show business process status = "Running". I read a blog that says wait conditions use resources via the async service (didn't say what: memory? CPU?).

My question is, does a wait condition in a CRM 2011 workflow use resources, and if so, what kind (memory, CPU, or both), and is it significant.

This question is coming up because our async service is spiking up to using over 36 gigs of memory during the day (at some point, the server then crashes).
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Question by:munge
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feridun earned 500 total points
ID: 40357469
I suppose they do consume resources in that each waiting workflow occupies a row in a database table. Also the async process has to periodically check through all waiting workflows. So there will be an impact on CPU resources but I wouldn't have thought it would be significant unless you have a very large number of waiting workflows.

Perhaps you have jobs that will never end because of errors. You can review these in Settings, System Jobs.
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by:munge
ID: 40357531
Thank you!   I guess the guy that made this post on this blog http://crmtipoftheday.com/2014/04/28/dont-use-wait-conditions/  is misinformed.

I guess technically you could say that using a database row is using resources, but to me "resources" means CPU and/or memory.  And I would guess that the cycling through waiting workflows wouldn't take much CPU either.  Certainly nothing that would push the async service up to using 36 gig of memory and crashing our system!

Thanks again.
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by:feridun
ID: 40357632
I agree that using 36G memory is excessive. Do you have multiple CRM organisations in your deployment? The async service has to service each one.

Since you have on-premise you might want to have a look in the SQL database for the CRM organization and see how many rows you have in the asyncoperationbase table.
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Author Comment

by:munge
ID: 40357650
Actually, your last post just turned on the light bulb in my head.  We actually have 3.5 MILLION waiting workflows!  What I didn't think about, is that the async service is cycling through all those quite often...

Between that and a certain plugin we believe is in some kind of infinite loop, I think we're getting close...
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Author Comment

by:munge
ID: 40357653
Also, would you happen to know how often the service cycles through those things?
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by:feridun
ID: 40357736
No I don't.  There's probably an article somewhere on the net about the inner workings of the async service but I don't recall seeing one.
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