We're using FOP in a production environment to render some management
reports and a very complicated lab report. We've had to limit the management
reports to about 2000 rows (~50 page PDF) because of FOP's memory issues
w/large PDFs. Also I worry about serious slowdown if we ever get 3 or 4
users on the same instance of the app server all running a decent sized PDF
at once. Does anyone know if wrapping FOP in a session bean would allow me
to distribute processing around to unused servers or otherwise handle the
java.lang.outOfMemoryError better? (We're on Weblogic 6.1)

I compared FOP to RenderX from XEP. RenderX was the only solution that
really mathces FOP's profile (XSL:FO based, java-based or at least platform
neutral, no extra servers to run or programs to install - if there are any
more out there, please post). For the report I was running, FOP was about 10
times faster than RenderX. But from most accounts performance between the
two should similar. I figure there must be something particular about my
stylesheet that RenderX didn't like. So I called XEP to see what kind of
support my interest in purchasing their $5k/cpu product might garner. They
weren't very helpful but did say they were insanely busy. I have a feeling
if you could come up with a high-performing commerical all Java FO->PDF
engine, you'd be very rich very quick.

Matt Savino


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