Optimizing the Musatcha.com Advanced WiFi Mapping Engine
While the WiFi Mapper was designed to run as fast as possible, even on older
machines, often it is desirable to speed things up even more. Here's a few
tips to do so.
Get Smaller Maps
The WiFi Mapper was designed on purpose to be extremely responsive once a map
has been loaded, for use on the road. However as a consequence, the entire
map is loaded into memory. If you try and load a 2000x2000 pixel map and
zoom in 8 times, you would be using several gigs of memory. If you find
that the maps aren't zoomed in enough, you might try getting maps that cover a
smaller area and are of higher resolution. The easiest way to do this is
download TerraServer maps by clicking the 'Get Maps' button on the map pack
manager tab. Other ideas suggested have been splitting WiGLE.net map packs
into smaller pieces. This however currently has to be done manually.
Disable the Magnifier
If you run the program on something as slow as a 166MHz box, you might
disable the magnifier to speed things up a bit. Just click view, and
uncheck the magnifier.
Disable Mouseover Network Info Popups
Everytime you stop moving your mouse for 50ms, the program does a database
query for networks underneath your cursor. This can be costly in CPU/Disk
resources. To disable this popup, uncheck 'AP Info Popup' under the 'View'
Disable OUI Statistics
While the OUI stats don't use too much CPU or RAM, you can save a little by
deleting oui.txt in the directory in which you installed the program.
Disable Nice-Looking Graphics
On the 'General' tab of the options panel, uncheck Anti-Aliasing. You
can also disable interpolation, or change it to a less nicer method. This
will make things look like crap, but should speed up plotting considerably.
Change the Update Speed
While plotting and calculating statistics, the WiFi Mapper "wakes up" every
500ms to update the status bar and what not. The time it takes to update
and redraw the screen is extremely minimal, but if you want to save load time by
a second or 2, crank up the update time. To do this, you need to edit this
key in the registry:
Use a Different Database
The WiFi Mapping Engine is capable of using any SQL98 compliant ODBC data
source. A copy of the schema can be found in the folder in which you
installed the program. There is a tutorial
on how to do this.
Optimize Your Database
(I'm writing a function to do this, but it's not written yet)
Enable DB Transactions
DB transactions are enabled by default, and as far as I know only work with
the SQLite3 db that the program comes with, but make sure you don't disable this
unless you are changing DB types.
Disable Speech Input/Output
Speech doesn't bog down computers very much unless they are extremely old.
(<200MHz) However if every bit helps, you may want to disable this by
unchecking them on the 'Options' menu.
Drop me an e-mail if you have other ideas.