3 Tricks to Improve the Speed of SugarCRM Instance

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The combination of technology and agility has dramatically reshaped the business landscape. Thousands of companies across the globe rely on SugarCRM to get a 360-degree view of the entire sales cycle and serve their clients in an outstanding fashion. For most salespeople, their CRM system is the first app they log into at work and the last one they log out of at the end of the day.

Every opportunity is accompanied by some challenges and CRM software is no exception. There are instances, especially while working with huge volumes of data, where SugarCRM does not perform operations as fast as one would hope.

Your business cannot be efficient if your SugarCRM has slow response times. For instance, telephone number searches take several seconds within Sugar and one often has to wait for long periods of time before Sugar fetches lists of relevant leads and contacts. The worst of this is when data imports do not complete within the specified time-frame, leaving you with archaic information. Failing to simplify and optimize SugarCRM processes can, therefore, result in high ownership costs and low return on investment.

We understand that despite the competitive SugarCRM Pricing, slow response times in Sugar may hinder you from getting your desired ROI. Hence, we are going to share some simple and easy-to-implement insights from our Certified SugarCRM Experts that can enhance the speed of your SugarCRM instance.

So let’s get the ball rolling.

1. Configurations via panels (within Sugar)

First things first, you have to ensure that you are adhering to the right protocols of using Sugar. Make sure of one thing: if you have enabled developer mode and are not using it, you should turn it off immediately. The reason being that developer mode severely impacts the performance of algorithms within Sugar. Similarly, make sure that your log levels are down to the minimum. Log levels should ideally be at ‘Fatal’, but ‘Error’ level would not be a bad option either. Anything other than that would start to downgrade the performance of Sugar. In addition to this, do turn off the tracker features if you are not using them because they, too, can severely slow down page loading within Sugar.

2. PHP Optimization

When running Sugar on-site, it is important to optimize your server to get the best performance possible. A number of techniques could be deployed, but we are mainly going to be discussing PHP caching here. Most issues regarding slow response times can be resolved through a thorough review of the performance statistics of the server.

Caching means temporarily storing recently used information in order to get the required data faster, which, in turn, helps to improve the work efficiency and overall performance of the system. Caching is quite simple to configure and can substantially improve CRM performance. PHP caching is used to build and store dynamic information. This allows for PHP to operate more efficiently.

First and foremost, make sure that you are using the most recent and stable version of PHP along with an opcode cache such as APC or Wincache. We would recommend APC especially if you are using Apache, but Wincache is equally good.

Make sure the following settings are disabled as they have the potential to drastically slow down any program:

  1. register_globals
  2. magic_quotes
  3. always_populate_raw_post_data  php.ini settings.

Apart from this, make sure that you remove all directories which you do not need from the include_path directive too. Furthermore, you can also improve speed by using an external cache. Cases in which external caching is commonly used include reducing database queries of largely static data such as configuration data, storing the output of computationally heavy calculations, and caching the results of heavy system calls such as file system scans.

With caching enabled, you will see drastic improvements in performance as well as scalability, leading to better user productivity and reduced hardware needs.

3. Database Indexes Tuning

Improper indexing acts as an obstacle to Sugar running smoothly. Tuning your database indexes and clearing up the tables that include technical data is bound to give you a distinct advantage and unlock the real power of Sugar for you.

Database servers consume lots of memory and storage space so it’s usually a smart move to keep your database server on a different machine than your web server.

Another technique you can do to enhance database operations and amplify the performance is transparent caching; by caching full queries and making sure that queries are deterministic. This can result in a huge leap in server-side performance.

If you are using SugarCRM Enterprise or Ultimate, you can configure a slave database to help speed up the Reports module and keep the rest of the app running smoothly when users are running reports.

Finally, ensure that the scheduled job, ‘Prune Database on the 1st of Month‘, is set to ‘Active’. This will go through your database and delete any records that have been deleted by your users since Sugar only soft deletes records when a user deletes them, which results in performance degradation over time if the records are not removed from the database.

WAIT, THERE’S MORE (SURPRISE!)

4. SQL Queries Optimization

The real cause of any performance issues is poorly optimized database queries. A Clean CRM Database tends to increase the efficiency of not only your SugarCRM instance but also that of your whole business as an entity.

The best way to improve database performance is to analyze what queries are being run on your database server and how long they are taking to run so you can discern queries that are slowing your system down. Just about every database out there has tools for doing this. With MySQL, you can use the slow query log to pinpoint problematic queries.

When optimizing database operations, always start by making sure that all of your tables are the same character set. If they are not, this can greatly slow down queries that search across tables containing data conforming to different character sets.

Next up is making sure that you are properly utilizing the MySQL Query Cache. This cache saves the results of select queries so that if the same query comes in again before any changes are made to the table, the results can be served much faster.

Finally, if query_cache_type is set to something other than “ON” or query_cache_size is set to 0, you will want to change these! 32MB is a fine start but depending on your workload, you may need more to reap the full benefit from this.

5. Client-side performance optimization

Web server optimization is the most common performance enhancing mechanism on the client side. It is widely practiced and as a result, the question of how one can alter their web server to optimize their Sugar arises. It’s fairly straightforward, you can start by making sure that you compress most of the content and information that is being sent to your browser. This will limit the load that the browser receives and will automatically speed up your processes. Apart from that, you can also change browser settings to keep information that is not prone to being altered by changes within the cache memory. Moreover, you can always check if your client side system has the configurations to match the data that you are handling; it is possible the resources of your system are exhausted and while changing and improving the size of your hardware and data network will not improve the optimization, it will speed up your Sugar.

Other Recommendations

Various other methodologies can be applied to the client side as well which include optimization of custom modules, optimization of import/export procedures and regulating the change in data visualization. These, like the methods we have already discussed, can significantly improve the performance of your SugarCRM and will give you the optimized execution that your Sugar originally came with so you can fully leverage the benefits of CRM software.

Bottom Line

Are you experiencing problems with your Sugar’s performance? Rolustech understands that some processes are difficult to handle for Sugar users who do not have a programming background and do not understand the back end works of Sugar and that is where this list will come handy for immediate fixes.

Rolustech is a SugarCRM Certified Partner & Developer Firm. We have rendered services to more than 600 satisfied clients globally and helped them with SugarCRM Customization, Implementation, Integration, Maintenance and Support. Get in touch for a FREE Business Analysis now! 

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