9. Profiling and performance#

If you feel that one of your pages takes more time than it should to be generated, chances are that you’re making too many RQL queries. Obviously, there are other reasons but experience tends to show this is the first thing to track down. Luckily, CubicWeb provides a configuration option to log RQL queries. In your all-in-one.conf file, set the query-log-file option:

# web application query log file

Then restart your application, reload your page and stop your application. The file myapp-rql.log now contains the list of RQL queries that were executed during your test. It’s a simple text file containing lines such as:

Any A WHERE X eid %(x)s, X lastname A {'x': 448} -- (0.002 sec, 0.010 CPU sec)
Any A WHERE X eid %(x)s, X firstname A {'x': 447} -- (0.002 sec, 0.000 CPU sec)

The structure of each line is:


CubicWeb also provides the exlog command to examine and summarize data found in such a file:

$ cubicweb-ctl exlog /home/user/myapp-rql.log
0.07 50 Any A WHERE X eid %(x)s, X firstname A {}
0.05 50 Any A WHERE X eid %(x)s, X lastname A {}
0.01 1 Any X,AA ORDERBY AA DESC WHERE E eid %(x)s, E employees X, X modification_date AA {}
0.01 1 Any X WHERE X eid %(x)s, X owned_by U, U eid %(u)s {, }
0.01 1 Any B,T,P ORDERBY lower(T) WHERE B is Bookmark,B title T, B path P, B bookmarked_by U, U eid %(x)s {}
0.01 1 Any A,B,C,D WHERE A eid %(x)s,A name B,A creation_date C,A modification_date D {}

This command sorts and uniquifies queries so that it’s easy to see where is the hot spot that needs optimization.

Do not neglect to set the fetch_attrs attribute you can define in your entity classes because it can greatly reduce the number of queries executed (see Loaded attributes and default sorting management).

You should also know about the profile option in the all-in-on.conf. If set, this option will make your application run in an hotshot session and store the results in the specified file.

Last but no least, if you’re using the PostgreSQL database backend, VACUUMing your database can significantly improve the performance of the queries (by updating the statistics used by the query optimizer). Nowadays, this is done automatically from time to time, but if you’ve just imported a large amount of data in your db, you will want to vacuum it (with the analyse option on). Read the documentation of your database for more information.