By following the simple tips in this article, you can significantly reduce the time it takes for EditLive! to load.
Tip 1: Set the Configuration File as Text
Before EditLive! can even begin to load, it needs to download the configuration file. Even on a fast intranet, the process of connecting to the server and downloading the configuration file makes up a very significant portion of the start up time. Fortunately, EditLive! provides the setConfigurationText function so that you can specify the configuration directly which avoids the extra connection back to the server.
This is the single most effective change you can make to reduce EditLive’s load time.
Tip 2: Specify Cache Headers
Unless you tell it otherwise, each and every time EditLive! starts up it will connect back to the server to check if any of it’s files have been updated, from the core editlivejava.jar file, to the configuration file, stylesheets, images and plugins. The vast majority of the time there won’t be any updates so this extra check is just a waste of time. Even when there are changes, in most cases it’s ok if the update doesn’t get downloaded immediately for all clients, so you can reduce the checks to happening just once a day or even once a week. Just like Windows Automatic Updates only checks for updates every week, you can configure EditLive! to check for updates less often as well.
The way you control those checks is by setting the cache control headers that your web server specifies. You can control how often EditLive! checks for updates to each file individually. So you can have EditLive! check for changes to the configuration file every day but only check for updates to EditLive! itself every week.
Tip 3: Load Plugins as Text
The plugin configuration files are just like the configuration file - EditLive! needs to download them before it can start up in case there’s something it needs to do for those plugins. You can either specify the plugin configuration information in the configuration file itself, or load the plugin configuration as text using the addPluginAsText function.
Also make sure your plugins are loading in the background so they don’t delay startup.
Tip 4: Take Advantage of the Smaller Jar
In EditLive! 6.7 a new smaller jar file was provided which reduces the initial download time by around 70%. If your users are using Java 6 update 10 or above, they will take advantage of this smaller jar file automatically. For older versions of Java, including on Mac, you need to make a small change on the server. See the Using Pack200 Compression with Earlier Versions of Java article for more information or get instructions specifically for the Apache HTTPD web server.
Tip 5: Use the Latest Java Updates
Java has gotten faster and faster over time, so making sure you have the latest version is always a great idea. You can always get the latest version of Java from java.com and keep it up to date with it’s built in automatic update system. The start up time for Java and the overall user experience for applets was significantly improved with Java 6 update 10.