Improving performance in large projects

As the number of stories in your Tracker project increase over time, you may notice a difference in UI responsiveness or even the occasional pause while the project loads or renders an increased number of stories. Depending on the content and complexity of the stories present, this can start to happen when after more than a few thousand stories are being loaded and rendered in your project. Most likely many of these stories are no longer needed for your current work, and it can be worth moving them out of your project.

The two best areas to focus on are the number of done iterations being loaded in the Done panel, and the number of stories in the Icebox.

The Done panel

The number of previous iterations loaded in the Done panel can be adjusted to reduce the number of stories being loaded in the project. If you ever need to expand the number of iterations, you will still have the option to load them by clicking the ‘Show all’ message at the top of the Done panel.

To decrease the number of done iterations Tracker loads, a project owner, the account owner, or an account admin can visit the project settings page under the MORE tab and reduce the ‘Number of Done Iterations to Show’ value to be equal to the number of iterations defined by your ‘Velocity Strategy’. To clarify, this number cannot be less than the ‘Velocity Strategy’ because Tracker needs to load these stories to calculate the project velocity. The lower you can make this number, the fewer iterations and their stories will be preloaded.

The Icebox

Over time, the Icebox can easily fill up with stories that are no longer needed, have been replaced with newer stories, or simply are too low priority to make it into the Backlog. These stories will contribute to the project load time and will need to be rendered while the Icebox panel is open.

Therefore, we recommend that you move any obsolete stories (or stories you do not intend to work on), from the Icebox to another project. You can either keep that project handy for reference or for moving additional stories, or you can also archive the project if you don’t wish to have it included in your regular projects list.

Here are some steps to help reduce the size of the Icebox:

  1. If you haven’t already, create a new project for the unnecessary Icebox stories.
  2. Then search the Icebox for stories that have not been updated recently. Here are some examples (note: stories in the Icebox are in an ‘unscheduled’ state):
    • To find stories in the Icebox that have not been updated in the past half year (26 weeks): state:unscheduled updated_before:-26w
    • To find stories in the Icebox that have not been updated since 2017 or earlier: state:unscheduled updated_before:1/1/2018
  3. To select a range of stories, select the first story in the results by clicking the selection box on its right, and then shift-click another story further down. To prevent time-outs during the move process, we recommend moving no more than 100 to 200 stories at a time.
  4. Once a story range is selected, click the Move option at the top of the page and choose the project you wish to move the stories to. The bulk actions menu option for moving selected stories

  5. Repeat this process until you’ve migrated all the unnecessary Icebox stories.

Once you are able to reduce the stories in your project, you should see an improvement in load times and UI responsiveness. As always, if you have any questions or need assistance, please email us at tracker@pivotal.io, and we’ll be happy to provide more information or investigate any issues you’re experiencing.

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