Anki Issues of Slow Desktop App

date-created:: 2023-08-10

Aiyaa! A dark day for Anki. Just when I expressed my renewed interest and appreciation of Anki, it pulled this stunt on me! :-(

This inexplicable degradation happened suddenly today, after I had added TwMoeD (Mandarin) for weeks. I also haven't installed any new add-ons lately.

Incredible... Now it's a long wait to even open the browser. What's more appalling: More than 1 minute for any search! (Used to be 6-7 seconds).

I tried restoring from backup. No joy.

Emergency remedy

Keep slimming down until the collection isn't oversized:

Screen Shot 2023-08-10 at 12.36.16.png|200

Slim down main profile by moving these decks to ekliao+2:

After unloading these, the main profile was able to do a full sync (required, after restoring from backup) to AnkiWeb.


Beyond repair

After slimming, at least 30 seconds for "front:" search. Too slow still!

At this point, I realized there's no going back to the 6-7 second search. I don't know what happened, but it is what it is.

Luckily, AnkiWeb search interface is usable, and is blazing fast.

New drastic remedy

I decided to pull a Hail Mary fix just out of curiosity to see if it works:


Like magic, this time a typical full text (not "front:") search took 1-2 seconds, even much better than the 6-7 seconds I had been "used to."

Follow-up action

Screen Shot 2023-08-10 at 20.28.23.png|400

Moral of the story

Software performs in mysterious ways. Try reinstalling before giving up.

I think the accumulation and combination of certain add-ons dragged down the database performance, the cause of which was unknowable to me.

This degradation has happened to me only once in the 3+ years of active use. I guess that is acceptable, especially now that I've identified the proper remedy.

For the record, these are the Anki add-ons I'm walking away from:

anki addons i discarded on 20230810 when reinstalling to restore fast speed of desktop.png|400

And finally for sanity check, the cloud storage version does preserve each and every media file, as proved from the "no diff" status of the "" folder:

Screen Shot 2023-08-10 at 20.40.48.png|400

Anki add-on performance tracking