Just tried the new iD OSM Editor...

Posted by katze_sonne on 9 May 2013 in English (English)

it really is easy to use and I like the design very much. However it is really slow on my computer. Tried it under chrome and firefox but editing an area with more than e.g. 15 buildings it gets really unusable. The CPU-usage goes up to 100%. I’m wondering why this problem (and I have a quite fast computer) (nearly) isn’t adressed at all those news about the iD editor…

I hope that it gets faster in the future and that this problem is not caused and / or limited by HTML5 and JavaScript :(

Comment from BCNorwich on 10 May 2013 at 06:47

Gee Whiz. Yes, open it up and everything grinds to a very slow crawl. It then takes about a minute, wondering if your computer is infected to shut the editor down. Regards Bernard

Comment from Tom Chance on 10 May 2013 at 08:32

I have the same experience.

Comment from robbieonsea on 10 May 2013 at 11:34


Especially don’t try panning the view. It makes Potlatch2 seem blazingly fast.

I don’t remember the early alpha/beta versions of iD being sooo slow.

I think I might leave it a while before attempting to use iD on my mobile phone…

Comment from aseerel4c26 on 10 May 2013 at 20:15

Agree - iD is significantly slower (5 times?!) than Potlatch2 in my up to date Firefox (Linux) on my old notebook. I think this really could be a JavaScript/HTML5 problem. It may just be not that efficient as Flash (Potlatch) or even Java (JOSM).

Comment from jfire on 11 May 2013 at 00:56

Hi, iD developer here,

We definitely don’t expect the kind of poor performance it sounds like you are seeing, and if you’re interested in helping improve it, we’d appreciate any kind of detailed technical information you can provide. E.g.:

  • Browser version, operating system, rough technical specs of computer.
  • If you’re at all proficient with browser developer tools, any profiling information.
  • Specific areas of the world that are slower to edit than others (if any).

As a shot in the dark as to what could be the problem – could folks try this version and say whether or not it’s any better.

Thanks, John

Comment from jfire on 11 May 2013 at 00:58

Ooops, gave the wrong URL above — try this one.

Comment from BCNorwich on 11 May 2013 at 06:24

Ooops, gave the wrong URL above — try this one.

With that Firefox 20.0.1 on Win 7 64bit crashes when trying to pan the map.

Comment from Tom Chance on 11 May 2013 at 12:48

jfire, using that link makes no difference to me. I don’t get any crashes, but it is very slow panning and my CPU usage flies up.

I have tried using Firefox and Chrome (both latest versions) on Ubuntu 12.04 amd64.

Comment from Tom Chance on 11 May 2013 at 12:49

Oh, and I was trying to edit around here:

It is certainly better when zoomed right in, but it should be able to handle larger areas without almost freezing my browser.

Comment from pieleric on 11 May 2013 at 15:11

Same thing here. With Firefox on Ubuntu 13.04 64 bits (dual core with 4Gb of RAM). JOSM is super smooth, potlatch works okayish, iD is dog slow keeping one CPU at 100% almost all the time :-(

Comment from katze_sonne on 12 May 2013 at 01:01

@jFire: I’m VERY happy that an iD developer answers this diary entry! Thanks a lot for that :) Of course I am happy to help :) - as I said I like the design and the concept of the iD editor very much. Well, it seems like not everyone is experiencing my problems as there are a lot of enthusiastic people about the new editor…

First of all: It makes no difference for me if I use Firefox oder Chrome (both times: newest version).

My Computer: Windows 7 - 64 Bit 8 GB of RAM AMD Phenom II X4 965 Nvidia 8600GT Gigabyte Mainboard (don’t know the exact model at the moment but I don’t think this makes a difference)

However it’s the same with my Thinkpad X230 with Ubuntu 12.04 LTS 32 Bit (Intel i5 with Ivy Bridge Graphics and 8GB of RAM) (to be honest: On my Thinkpad it is even more unusable and it’s the first piece of software which did not run fluently on my i5…)

I made a video to show what the idEditor acts like for me :( Even the music playing playing in a Flash-Player-Widget in another Tab hangs from time to time :/

(note that I tried to pan the view most of the time - for example when moving the mouse cursor in “circles”, the left mouse button was clicked all the time - and the view didn’t pan at all) - and sorry for the bad quality ;)

Comment from jfire on 12 May 2013 at 01:32

@BCNorwich, if the browser crashes it’s a bug in Firefox. Not too much iD can do about that. Can you say what area you are trying to edit, and what performance is like in Chrome?

@Tom Chance, thanks, this is helpful. One more question: is there a minimum zoom level at which the performance is decent, and if so, what is it, roughly? (Look in the URL for map=xx.yy – that’s the zoom level.)

Comment from jfire on 12 May 2013 at 01:39

@katze_sonne, wow, thanks for the video, that’s awesome.

One more thing I should have mentioned – if you have any browser extensions installed, can you say whether disabling them makes any difference? In Chrome opening iD in an incognito window will usually be sufficient.

I am seeing a few things that can be improved, but I’m also seeing better performance to begin with on my computer. Since everyone here seems to be on either Windows or Linux, and almost all iD developers use Macs, I suspect this may be an OS-dependent issue.

Comment from katze_sonne on 12 May 2013 at 02:04

@jfire: I’ve tied it in chrome incognito mode which results in a little better performace but still it’s too slow to be fun to use…

Your question about zoom values where iD is still usable: at zoom 18 it is still more or less fluent (maybe not as good as Potlatch but still usable) on an average area. One Problem making it “look slow” is that it only renders black areas at the first moment when panning around and not even showing background pictures… in zoom level 17 it already lags too much.

I also tried it in Internet Explorer (eww!!) but it doesn’t to work at all with this “great” :/ browser (just displays a blank page). Anyways, that’s not really important for now ;)

Well… that you all are using MacOS could be a reason. But are you all using Safari for testing? Otherwise I cannot believe that there is such a big difference between using Firefox on MacOS or Windows or Linux… However, you could try a dual boot system with Ubuntu Linux (I would suggest 12.04 LTS as it is more stable) - it’s for free and as far as I know it runs quite well on Macs, so there is no reason why not to try iD under Ubuntu ;)

I will try launching Firefox without any Addons as soon as a Download I have running at the moment has ended ;)

Comment from katze_sonne on 12 May 2013 at 02:10

BTW: I have installed Chrome for testing purposes only and therefore I haven’t installed any Addons there.

And now I have tried to create a new Firefox profile without any Addons - now noticable difference :/

Maybe the HTML5 things are missing hardware acceleration which (for some reason) works on MacOS? I’m wondering if iD is making use of WebGL?

Comment from aseerel4c26 on 12 May 2013 at 20:12

@jfire: some results from me, I hope it helps. This time with with Adobe Flash 11.7.700.169, Firefox 20.0.1 (German) with fresh user profile, Win7 64 bit (German), Intel Core 2 Duo 1,6 GHz, Firefox hardware accel is switched on, but I don’t know if it is used. Resulting processing time (with task manager’s column for cumulated CPU time, added firefox and flashplugin’s time) at position for clicking edit (with iD), waiting to load, three times zoomed in (with clicking +), four times out (-), avoided to hover over the editor map.

  • iD: 30 seconds
  • P2: 15 seconds

Another test: Just started iD and P2 with having the slippy map at z16:

  • iD: 50 seconds (that really freezes the browser). For comparison: 90 seconds real time on my other really old Linux notebook with FF (similar with Opera 12).
  • P2: 14 seconds (22 seconds in total after hitting M (for maximizing and dragging the left panel to the left border to have even more editable map than in iD = more objects). For comparison: 25 seconds real time on my other really old Linux notebook with FF (similar with Opera 12). (about 35 seconds in total after maximizing).

So, not five times slower - but it feels like five times slower (maybe panning around is really that much slower, but it is harder to test). Hope you can improve.

Comment from jfire on 14 May 2013 at 22:44

Hi folks, the first round of performance improvements is live on (not on yet). Let me know if it feels less sluggish. More improvements are in the pipeline.

Some of the changes were fairly invasive, so it’s possible I added some new bugs. If you encounter any, please file an issue:

I haven’t cracked the problem of sluggish paint performance when panning the map in Firefox. All evidence so far points to it being a problem with Firefox iteself. Here’s what we’re up against: For me, when dragging on that page, Chrome gets a consistent 60 FPS, Firefox < 1 FPS.

Comment from aseerel4c26 on 16 May 2013 at 13:53

@jfire: I do not notice an improvement (FF 17, Linux, old notebook). Do you need benchmark numbers?

Where can I see the FPS on your test page and what do I need to click? Move?

Comment from jfire on 16 May 2013 at 19:23

Here’s a test page with no interaction required and a FPS meter built in:

@aseerel4c26 Have you tried Chrome? I would be interested to hear how it compares to FF on the notebook. (On the Win7 box too.)

Comment from katze_sonne on 17 May 2013 at 01:44

@jfire: Still really slow at FF 21 under Windows 7 64 Bit (German). However under Chrome it is “usable” now… that means: Dragging the map around is very responsive but then rendering the new lines / houses / etc. is still very slow and needs a couple of seconds - and still it will result in very high CPU-usage…

The demo page in your last comment works very fast on chrome - it renders with about 60.5 Frames per second. On Firefox it is reeallly slow in comparison and the fps won’t be shown. There is only a questionmark (–> “?”) :/

Comment from aseerel4c26 on 20 May 2013 at 23:55

@jfire: Thanks. A black (white dots) square jumps slowly around bit FPS shows “?”. No, I did not try chrome, and I don’t want to, in principle. ;-) I am really satisfied with Firefox. Do you notice a big performance difference between Firefox and Chrome? Maybe you can find out which component is triggering this and file a bug report for Firefox?

Comment from jfire on 21 May 2013 at 18:30

Yes, as the benchmark shows, there is a large performance difference between Firefox and Chrome on SVG elements, which iD uses heavily. Personally, I find Firefox’s performance unsatisfactory. If you’re curious about the technical details, the relevant issues are,, and

Comment from aseerel4c26 on 21 May 2013 at 23:25

@jfire: Yes, the performance with iD is indeed unsatisfactory - I was talking of the browser in general, sorry for being not clear.

Thanks for the links, interesting. I have made a note on the wiki page of iD.

Comment from rgr1 on 15 November 2013 at 10:19

I just tried to use iD. But nothing happened - I see only blank page below bar (I can use Potlach, he started). Firefox 25, XP SP3 32-bit

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