Hi Dale
You are right, it does boil down to that basic question! Sorry if it is a 
stupid one. However, it isn't just a little bit slower - it's 100x slower, 
which I certainly wasn't expecting.

Thanks very much for your suggestion. I did think of both RAM and caching. 
I'm pretty sure it's not RAM. In fact both machines are currently 
development - and the server for the company has very low load at the 
moment (its a fresh setup and not being used by anyone other than myself 
right now). The main filesystem is mounted on an SSD and commands like 
'find...' run with lightning speed.

on my machine:
free -m 
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          1024        847        176          0          0         53
-/+ buffers/cache:        794        229
Swap:            0          0          0

on the company's
free -m
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:           992        974         18          0        154        449
-/+ buffers/cache:        369        622
Swap:         2047        185       1862

I added the swap a while back in case it was running out of memory - but at 
the time I never saw the swap space being used. Now it seems to be using it 
a little. 

Caching may be a possibility. On my machine, there are times when e.g. 'git 
status' does longer (I think!) - however, on the company's machine it 
pretty much stays the same at around a minute no matter how many times in a 
row the command is run.

I was wondering if there was an option (or set of options) for git dealing 
with caching - but could not find any information on this.

On Thursday, June 5, 2014 2:50:01 PM UTC+1, Dale Worley wrote:
> What you're really asking is "Why is Git running much slower on one 
> computer than another?" 
> I don't know all the factors to consider, but I suspect that one is 
> whether all of the directory information about all of the component 
> files is cached in RAM.  On a developer's machine, all of that stuff 
> is likely to get into RAM and stay there.  On a "server", there are 
> likely competing demands for RAM, and the directory information for 
> the working copy is likely to get pushed out of RAM. 
> One thing would be to use utilities like xosview and free to see how 
> the demand for memory is on the server.  You could also try running 
> the command twice in quick succession on the server -- after the first 
> one, all of the needed information will have been pulled into the 
> cache. 
> Dale 

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