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[protege-discussion] RMI server scalability for Protege Frames 3.5 editor

John Pierre johnmapierre at
Wed Jun 19 10:26:57 PDT 2013

We are trying to set up a collaborative installation so multiple developers
can edit a Frames ontology.  The ontology currently has about 25,000 frames.

We have successfully configured the RMI server and can connect clients to
the server and access the example ontologies across the network.

The problem is that our 25,000 frame ontology isn't able to load into the
clients when accessed across the network.

Our ontology is MySQL backed.

The ontology loads fine when accessed on the same machine without going
through the rmi server.

The ontology loads but takes several minutes to do so when running the
client and server on the same machine through the localhost loopback.

The ontology loading hangs and cannot load when running the client and
server on different machines either on a wide area network (20+Mbps) nor on
a local area Ethernet network (100+Mbps).  After waiting 30 mins or so we
get broken pipes and/or timed out connections.

The ontology loads if the MySQL database is accessed across the network
directly without using the client-server (.pprj file is on the client side
but points to a MySQL database hosted on the network)

Therefore the culprit seems to be network demands of the rmi server.

We have  -Dserver.use.compression=true turned on at the server.

We've tried -Dserver.client.preload.skip=true on the client side.

It seems this 25,000 frame ontology might be too large for the RMI
client-server architecture, but the Protege documentation seems to hint
that much larger ontologies have been developed using Protege.


1. What is the practical scalability limit of the Protege RMI client-server
in terms of ontology size?

2.  Are there additional configuration settings that we can try to get our
ontology to load?

3.  Are there other collaboration models we could try for allowing multiple
people to work on a large scale Frames ontology besides the rmi
client-server approach?

Thanks in advance for your help.

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