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Infor Process Automation Performance Improvement – Cancel Check

December 22, 2015

By Edward Jensen, Senior Software Engineer

Infor is continually working on new Infor Process Automation (IPA) features and improving product performance. Please continue reading to learn about one new feature that can significantly improve product performance.

A new option called “Cancel Check Frequency” is included in the Infor Process Automation 10.1.1 CU 33. We wanted to share some information about it here.

As more and more customers use Infor Process Automation for increasingly demanding processing, performance has become more of a focus for us. We found an excellent opportunity to increase performance for process flows that execute a large number of activity nodes. Normally, a work unit thread will check to see if the work unit has been canceled after the completion of every activity node. This involves performing a database query against the work unit record, to see if the status has been changed to “cancelled.” Even though this processing is typically very fast, when a very large number of activity nodes are executed, the accumulated time used for all those queries can add up, increasing the amount of time it takes a work unit to complete processing.

We have added a feature so that cancel checking can happen on a less frequent basis (if desired). As a result, on some process flows, we are seeing the processing time drop significantly, sometimes from 30%-50%.

Here is a brief description on how this new feature can be leveraged. Process flows can now be configured to check for work unit cancellation in one of two ways:

  1. Check for work unit cancellation after each activity node completes processing. (existing method)
  2. Check for work unit cancellation at most every N seconds, where N is configurable. (new method)

Cancel Check

Figure 1: Cancel Check Configuration Screen

By selecting a reasonable value for N, such as 20 seconds when activity nodes typical take a second or less to complete, less cancellation checks will take place, resulting in better performance.

To select the desired cancellation options, navigate as follows:

  1. Rich Client > Start > Applications > Process Server Administrator > Configuration > Process Definitions > Open the desired type of process definitions (User, System, or Application) > Open the desired process definition record.
  2. Select the desired Cancel Check Frequency:
    1. Immediate – check for work unit cancellation after each activity node completes processing.
    2. Intermittent – check for work unit cancellation at most every N seconds.
  3. If Intermittent was selected, populate the desired Cancel Check Seconds.
  4. Save changes and enjoy higher performance immediately.

Note: Cancel checking still only occurs at the completion of each activity node, but by leveraging this feature, the cancel check can be skipped, if N seconds have not yet elapsed since the last check.

This is a very simple, yet effective way to speed up Process performance.

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