Dorico unusably slow

Dorico has become unusably slow since the most recent update to (e.g. - I select a note - click on edit and nothing happens. I wait, and get the “not responding” message. Then the screen goes white - and after up to a minute I finally get the edit menu) I am working with one short piece, consisting of four flows, - and one instrument. I have the playback turned off… My setup is: AMD Ryzen 9 5900X 12 Core Processor running Windows 11. I have read previous posts about slowness and am seemingly doing everything to follow suggestions in those posts. I have just checked to see if there is an outstanding upgrade - and there isn’t. Am I the only one to be experiencing this? Heaven help what would happen if I loaded an orchestral score! Help/suggestions please.

Something’s going on that is specific to your system here. I have a AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 8-Core Processor and it works like a gazelle on most of my stuff, including full orchestra. Sure, multi-movements immense orchestra stuff with lots of divisi and condensing slows down, but I personally have not experienced you are describing. I’m sure someone from the team will pipe up soon to help you, but rest assured this is not Dorico itself here, but likely a peripheral, a driver, or other some such …

Thanks Claude - I will wait to hear from the team.

Don’t forget to post a Diagnostic Report.

It sounds like you might have a MIDI feedback loop or something horrible like that. Do you see the little green indicator in the bottom right-hand corner of the project window showing up the whole time, or does it only appear (as it should) when you play notes on your keyboard?

If it’s showing up all the time, make sure you don’t have MIDI devices that you’re using as outputs also enabled as inputs in the Play page of Preferences.

But yes, we’ll need at the very least a set of diagnostics, which you can create via Help > Create Diagnostic Report, and then attach them here.

Dorico (3.6 MB)
Hi Daniel - thanks very much for your response - I am attaching a diagnostics report. What I have noticed in the bottom right hand corner is a red triangle with an exclamation mark - I have not idea what this means and clicking on it does nothing. I am not using a keyboard for input currently - although I have in the past. I hope that helps. AND - Happy New Year!!

The diagnostics don’t show the kinds of very slow response time you’re reporting, Chris. Could you perhaps make a screen recording showing what you’re seeing, and then provide a fresh set of diagnostics, and share them here?

The red warning triangle in the bottom corner of the window suggests that the audio engine itself has died, and certainly Dorico won’t run happily if the audio engine crashes while the app is running. In the diagnostics you’ve uploaded there’s a crash dump from the VST scanner component that is part of the audio engine (cc @Ulf who may know why this is happening), but perhaps this is part of what’s going on.

I will have a look at the crash dump tomorrow morning…

Hi @chris62desford ,

the crash of the vst2xscanner is in HALionSonic SE. I don’t know the reason for the crash,
but there is one thing I’d like to mention and that is: You don’t need to put all the Steinberg instruments onto the whitelist of VST2s, because they all also come as VST3 plug-ins. The VST2 derivate is only provided for others host applications that don’t support VST3, but in Dorico you shall always use the VST3 version of plug-ins. So please take away the following entries from your whitelist:
Groove Agent
HALion 6
HALion Sonic
HALion Sonic SE
The Grand 3

If you do that, then also the vst2xscanner shall not crash any more, since it won’t load the VST2 version of HALion Sonic SE at all.

Please try this out and then let’s see how your system behaves. Thanks

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First of all thanks Ulf and Daniel for responding on what is a holiday!! Above and beyond!
Ulf - I did as you suggested - and it does not seem to have stopped the freezing problem.

So this is what I was attempting to do in the clip:
I am building up a multi-flow file of a number of compositions. I load the multi-flow file - then load the next composition I want to add - by adding a new flow and then copying and pasting to the that new flow (this avoids complications of more instruments sometimes being added regardless of instructing Dorico to “use existing instruments”). So after copying and pasting the part I want to add - I then copy and paste the guitar chords across. It is at this point that the program seems to get into difficulty - I click on Edit - or I highlight a note etc etc. and the program freezes.

Sometimes Dorico goes a while without any problems - therefore I started the screen record knowing there might be nothing of interest to begin with - I have listed the points at which the problems occur:

Points in the video
1:23 Freezes
3:40 trying to highlight a second note - freezes
4:26 - freezes when trying to save file

Several things about the Windows screen record:

  1. it doesn’t record the other Dorico window with a second file in - even when I switch to it. (some of the mouse movements don’t reflect what I actually did - possibly becuase they represent what I did with the file in the other window if that makes sense!)
  2. It doesn’t record the screen going partially obscure and milky when the program stops responding.
    Dorico (3.6 MB)

I attach the diagnostics zip, but the forum won’t let me upload the screen capture - it is 24mB and maximum size is 4mB. How can I get this to you?
Thanks, Chris

Hi Chris, please send directly to u dot stoermer at steinberg dot de. Thanks

Thanks for the screen capture, Chris.

I’m curious about the status of the audio engine when you have those freezes. So during that time, please go to the TaskManager and in there find in the list of background processes the VSTAudioEngine process. Does it show as “not responding”?

Hi Ulf - the VSTAudioEngine process does not appear in the background tasks in Task Manager.
Although I do not have it configured as the audio engine in Dorico, I have Propellerhead Balance - which works when I use it with Reason, but Windows does not like the drivers - which of course are there even when I don’t have Balance plugged in. Would that possibly have anything to do with this problem?

Hi Chris, Dorico automatically launches the VSTAudioEngine process, you can’t do anything about that, but Task Manager is sometimes unreliable in showing all background tasks. Can I therefore ask you kindly to download the free utility Process Explorer from here? It’s small and requires no installation, just run it. Dorico and the VSTAudioEngine will appear pretty much at the end of the list of processes. Then again, please check for the responsiveness of VSTAudioEngine. Thank you very much.

Thanks Ulf - I did see VSTAudioEngine later in the day - it was under Apps - so I was looking in the wrong place. For some reason I had a completely problem free afternoon - no freezes at all - even though I was doing all the things I had previously been doing and hadn’t changed any configurations. I will try Process Explorer - I have twin monitor set up - so I will put that in one monitor and work in the other - and feed back to you what I observe. Thanks again

Hi Ulf - my silence over the past week has been due to being away for a family funeral.
I have explored more and the following are what I have found:

  1. Process Explorer does not show any change in VSTAudioEngine other than increases and decreases in memory being used.
  2. the whole problem is very intermittent - for no obvious reason - I can be probem free for a while and then it starts again.
  3. I explored whether it was due to particular files (i.e. ones which started their life as MusicXML imports - which have sometimes been problematic in the past) - no pattern here
  4. the general problem seems to be a delay in responding to anything for about 8-10 seconds - if I wait then the program responds - whereas if I press a key again there is a milky screen and sometimes a crash.
    Would there be any merit in my completely reinstalling everything from scratch - maybe there is some corruption somewhere?

Now that you have Process Explorer installed, you could create mini dumps in that moment when Dorico slows down. By means of the mini dumps we can see what Dorico is doing at that point in time.
So if it happens again, please right click Dorico in the list of Process Explorer and from the pop-up menu choose Create > Create mini dump. Follow the on-screen instructions . The resulting dump file please zip up and attach to a reply here.
And the same you could also do for the audio engine process.

Generally, the files that software installers write are ‘read-only’: the app itself, and files that support it. So unless you’ve got a disk that is corrupting stored data, it’s unlikely to change.

Problems tend to lie in things like configuration settings, options, preferences and parameters; and conflicts with other software. Installing again may not delete this data. You can try re-installing it once, to rule out any issues there, but don’t think that more reinstalls will do anything different.

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Hi Ulf - thanks - I have done minidumps for both Dorico and VST audio engine but even zipped, they are too big to attach - shall I email them as before?

Thanks Benwiggy.