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I went through this https://www.nothingbutsharepoint.com/sites/itpro/Pages/How-to-Improve-Workflow-Performance-in-SharePoint-Server-2010.aspx to make sure workflows run faster but it's very slow.

  1. It's a non production server so no traffic and no other heavy processes running at the time.
  2. server has dual processor 6gb ram and plenty of spaces
  3. non-prod farm consists of app server + 1 wfe server + 1 db server (all are somewhat beefed up)
  4. The list I am running the test workflow has 20 records and 12 columns
  5. In the workflow: I am creating a list, then using webservices to get the list id, building string to update a field in the list item, building xml and updating the target list (that i create in the first step of the workflow), lastly sending me an email stating workflow completed.

The whole process shouldn't take more than 1/2 minutes and may be 5 mins max (b/c worflow timer job) but not 1/2 hour. And sometime it even errors out. Sometimes I receive “Due to heavy load, the latest workflow operation has been queued. It will attempt to resume at a later time”.

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Is this by chance a workflow that was created in SP 2007 and upgraded to 2010? –  Dave Wise Oct 4 '12 at 14:45
    
No Dave. Brand new workflow created in SP 2010 about 2 days ago. Same story follows whether WF created using Nintex or SP Designer. I made some changes to services and see if it's gonna have any impact or not. –  Maria Burton Oct 4 '12 at 17:25
    
What did you set the job-workflow value to? Remember this waiting for the timer job is on every wait. Which could be after list is created, After Web Service call, after updating list, ... Maybe try to add some log to history to see when it's taking time –  Per Jakobsen Oct 6 '12 at 18:46

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