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Performance Timer

Submitted on: 9/26/2002 7:57:21 PM
By: Matthew Vincent  
Level: Advanced
User Rating: By 5 Users
Compatibility: VB 4.0 (32-bit), VB 5.0, VB 6.0, VB Script, ASP (Active Server Pages) , VBA MS Access, VBA MS Excel
Views: 6870
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(About the author)
     This is timer code with extremely high resolution and speed. The timer is very easy to use with only 4 functions StartTimer, StopTimer, TimeElapsed and Supported. Also included ATL COM Dll version super fast. This is my first post and I hope to do more in the future. After reading Chris Lucas's article "High Precision Timing Class And Demo" I wanted to understand performance timing more so I started my own research. I highly recommend everyone to read his article and download his version as I wouldn't have even started this project without it. Visual Basic has various timer functions that you can use but their resolution isn't very good: Now(), Time() and Timer() = 1 second. GetTickCount() and TimeGetTime() = 10ms. There is one however that has a resolution of 0.0008 ms and all you need to use it is 2 API functions QueryPerformanceCounter and QueryPerformanceFrequency but you do need to understand how to use them. The LARGE_INTEGER from the API documentation is a 64 bit data type that can be best represented in Visual Basic by using the Currency data type. To use the high resolution timer you need the value returned from QueryPerformanceFrequency which is the number of counts your system can so in 1 second and also how long the system takes to call QueryPerformanceCounter. You can retrieve the time taken in any way you want.. eg. if you wanted the time taken to be in milliseconds then you could use .TimeElapsed(pvMilliSecond). I have done all this in 1 easy to use class along with a small demo project, tell me what you think.
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Other User Comments

9/30/2002 1:15:29 AMMatthew Vincent

You will have to download the ATL COM Dll from my site as I can not upload it to this site.

I did a test which looped 10,000 times with my 400MHz computer, VB averaged 1700 nano seconds but the C++ Dll did 750 nano seconds. Thats more than twice as fast.
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10/3/2002 12:50:31 AMChris Lucas

Vincent, thank you for recognizing my work. I'm glad to have turned another programmer on to performance VB. Stick with it, VB can scream when implemented correctly.
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10/4/2002 3:40:24 AMMatthew Vincent

I have been programming VB for over 6 years and I am always looking for that extra bit of performance that I can squeeze out, and there are a lot of ways.

I knew about the various timing methods for ages but your code was what started me doing proper research, cheers.

If you want that little extra from my code then I suggest getting the ATL COM Dll which I made. Its the first real C++ code that I have produced and it works really well and fast.
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10/4/2004 1:41:42 PM

This class is well written, intuitive and simele to use. When combined with a looping function, this code is excellent for inserting precise delays into Visual Basic code. I have found the resolution to be about 10 microseconds on my PC hardware.
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10/12/2007 8:23:21 PMl0st3d

Very interesting code. Thanks for it!
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9/19/2008 6:53:43 PMTom Weber

Thank you very much. You helped me a lot. This is really well written code!
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