Subject Re: [IBO] Slow lookups over remote connect
Author Geoff Worboys
Hi Bob,

There is a lot to consider when building an application that needs to
operate over a slow link. Personally I prefer a thin-client solution
to avoid/minimise such problems (MS Terminal Server etc).

However IBO does have ways and means of making slow links work

One of the first areas of potential problem is application startup -
or more specifically the first use of the connection. This can cause
IBO to fetch lots of information about the database schema (metadata).
To avoid excessive delays IBO's TIB_Connection component has a
SchemaCacheDir property which can cache the necessary information
between connections - so the large delay happens only on the first
connection, and then the local cache is used on subsequent

Please read the online help for that property for additional
information. Note that the property should not be defined while you
are still developing (other than for testing the property itself)
because there will be no benefit if you are constantly updating the
database metadata.

Any lookup datasets (attached to ib_lookupcombo) can be optimised
using the POS attribute inside the ordering links. eg.


says that the lookup does not proceed until 3 characters have been
input. POS=0 does a sort of automated optimisation, but POS=2 or
greater can be very beneficial when performing lookups on large
datasets over slow links.

If you anticipate the user may wish to scroll a dataset that has a
large number of lookups then you may find it useful to try my
LookupEnh component ( which
supports automatically disconnecting lookup datasets when not

I suggest using search mode rather than searching links. So that the
user is encouraged to always select the minimum number of records to
meet their requirement. IBO makes it easy to setup and the benefits
can be huge. (See the contacts sample app).

As you already hinted; a statement like SELECT * FROM ATABLE is not
appropriate over a slow link (or at any time with client/server).
Always setup to select only the fields that are actually required.

Experiment with FetchWholeRows as either true or false. Depending on
the circumstances this can lead to good performance benefits. For
example small rows sizes or small result sets (lookup datasets) often
benefit from FetchWholeRows=true, while large row sizes often benefit
from false.

And on a more general note... Client/Server is generally well suited
to slow links - provided you can get used to designing appropriately.
Perform work at the server whereever possible (stored procedures and
triggers), design your client app to retrieve the minimum amount of
data possible from the server, setup your forms to encourage users to
search for specific records rather than retrieving entire datasets and


Geoff Worboys
Telesis Computing