Fix SharePoint Performance Issue with ‘Open in Explorer’ & opening non-Office File Types

I was recently working with documents stored in SharePoint (Office 365 to be exact) and was seeing poor performance when trying to open file types with applications other than Office. At first I just put it down to a slow connection to Office 365, but I quickly realised that accessing files from Office 365 via alternate means (CSOM, Web Services) was much faster. I also found that the ‘Open with Explorer’ function (available on the Library ribbon as shown below) was slow to open.

cameron-dwyer-sharepoint-webdav-open-explorer-performance-issue-fix-01-open-with-explorer

 

cameron-dwyer-sharepoint-webdav-open-explorer-performance-issue-fix-02-explorer-webdav-view

In both scenarios I saw the performance issue (1) Opening non-Office files from SharePoint, and (2) Using the Open in Explorer function, the underlying technology that is performing the communication is WebDAV. WebDAV is the layer that makes it possible for applications that were not designed to work with SharePoint to.. well.. work with SharePoint I guess! WebDAV is actually a standard and isn’t SharePoint specific but I won’t go into that here. Suffice to say I’d isolated my issue down to being a performance issue related to WebDAV.

Now I knew what I was troubleshooting, the answer was readily available. Here’s the official KB of a known issue with WebDAV and the auto-detect settings option in Internet Explorer http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2445570

This was the fix for me:

In Internet Explorer, open Internet Options

cameron-dwyer-sharepoint-webdav-open-explorer-performance-issue-fix-03-internet-options

Select Connections | LAN Settings

cameron-dwyer-sharepoint-webdav-open-explorer-performance-issue-fix-04-connections-lan-settings

Uncheck ‘Automatically detect settings’

cameron-dwyer-sharepoint-webdav-open-explorer-performance-issue-fix-05-automatically-detect-settings

That’s it. After making this change I could go back to SharePoint and the SharePoint Library ‘Open in Explorer’ action was 4x faster than it had been. I was also getting much faster opening times of my non-Office files.

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About Cameron Dwyer

Chief Technology Officer at OnePlace Solutions. Microsoft MVP: Office Dev Passionate about delivering compelling solutions on the Office 365/SharePoint platform. Addicted to coffee.

Posted on November 18, 2014, in Office 365, SharePoint, Windows and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Wow. One of the simplest yet most effective tips I’ve ever encountered! I was wasting half of my day just waiting for folders to open. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. nakagumahissaosandro

    CSOM is very slow. 550 lines of a ms project’s project takes 4 hours. The network is fine except for CSOM, even using the SharePoint site it is faster. CSOM is the worst thing I have ever seen. Anything that could be at least 80 times faster?

    Like

    • That seems exceptionally slow. CSOM is usually pretty quick although it all depends what you’re trying to push down the pipe. My go to tool for trying to see what’s causing the slowness is Fiddler – it’s a free tool that lets you see the calls being made on the client machine to SharePoint. You can see how much data is being transferred and the response times.

      Like

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