A general enquiry about Mac OS performance


Something I’ve been wondering about for a while, is Axure’s process for making its Mac OS app.

I’ve always noticed a serious performance difference between Mac and Windows - the latter being much faster in all aspects.

Since first using Axure (v7) it’s something that’s steadily improved, but is always present. From little things like dropping widgets on to pages, to resizing windows and panes, to performance really suffering with large complex canvases.

Is this related to how Axure’s codebase is developed and then ported over to Mac OS? (is this what the mobjc Mono library for .NET code is for?).

Thanks for any insight offered!:slight_smile:

Hi willjohnsnow,

It sounds like you’re seeing some slowness on macOS versus Windows. On Macs we do use the Mono framework, but this isn’t very heavy and shouldn’t be what is causing the slowness. We’re always looking for areas where the tool can be optimized so that we can zero in on specific items for investigation. We have a case filed for investigating the window resize issue on macOS, but if you happen to be able to provide any examples of the widget lag or a sample file for the large file performance issues then we can make sure those get filed as well so that we can take a look. :slight_smile:

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Hi Will,

Many of the PC / Mac performance differences are related to how much is drawn to the screen and how often. On the Mac, we were drawing more pixels and more frequently than on PC. This was the focus of a lot of the optimization work put into 8.1 which should generally be much more performant than 8.0. Beyond that, start-up time, page switching, and memory usage were also optimized. It wouldn’t be fair to pin the performance difference on Mono. They’ve done an amazing job. We needed to take more advantage of the Mac OS architecture, and there are more opportunities to get faster on both PC and Mac with some bigger changes. We’re working on those for 9.


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Hi again Victor!

Thanks so much for your detailed reply, I really appreciate it.

I have to say it again - what you’re saying makes me psyched and super excited for 9!


Keep up the great work! :thumbup:

Hi all,

I would have thought that Mono is responsible for the difference in speed between Mac an Windows as it has all sorts of Windows related files inside the app…it seems like it creates a kind of mini virtual machine in order to run Axure on a Mac.

With the changing pace of current prototyping apps (quite a few new ones are being released that are web apps packaged up using Electron) I fear that if Axure does not switch to building their app using web technologies then they will get left behind. Webflow for example is a SASS product built in React and running in the browser. Webflow is not as advanced where it comes to interactions (this is one area Axure still rules all prototyping apps) but I think in 3 or 4 years this will probably change when they open up their platform to plugins.

What is Axure doing in terms if future proofing its product (using web technologies) in the face of competitors?

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Thanks for the detailed thoughts.

Funnily enough I’ve just heard about Webflow through a colleague. It looks awesome.

Taking a step back does make you see Axure’s limitations. I recently tried playing around with making an actually responsive app to fit several mobile screen sizes properly. A silly idea I know but I just wanted to prove the concept of being able to do it rather than anything else. It sort of worked but speed to load was an issue.

Let’s see what Axure RP 9 brings. A tool is a tool at the end of the day, must be careful not to put the cart before the horse as it were.