Lately I was working on a fairly advanced allocation algorithm on large data which forced me to search for different tricks to improve performance than those that you can find on my site here already.
I was using List.Generate to check for every month in my table, if there was enough free capacity on a platform to start new wells. As every well had a certain production scheme (producing different amounts for a certain length of time), I first had to check the total production amount of active wells before I could determine the spare capacity for a new month. So I had to look into every active well, grab the capacity of the new month and add it up.
Therefore I’ve stored the active production schemes in one table in my List.Generate-record. That lead to an exponentially decreasing performance unfortunately.
Solution to improve performance of List.Generate
Buffering my tables in the “next”-function reduced the query duration by almost 70% !
Although a Table.Buffer or List.Buffer is always high on my list when it comes to performance issues, I was fairly surprised to see that behaviour here: As List.Generate returns the last element of its list as an argument for the next step, I was always assuming that this would be cached (and that was the reason because List.Generate performs recursive operations faster than the native recursion in M). Also, I had just referenced that table once ane in such a case, a buffer would normally not have come into my mind. (But desperation sometimes leads to unexpected actions …)
I also buffered a table that had just been referenced within the current record (and not recursively) and this improved performance as well. (Although in that case, the tables has been referenced multiple times within the current record). But this buffer didn’t have such a big impact on performance than the one on the table that was referenced by the recursive action.
Here is some pseudo-code illustrating the general principle:
Solution with buffers:
Is that new to you or have you made the same experience? Which grades of performance improvements did you achieve with this method? Please let me know in the comments!
Enjoy & stay queryious 😉