Why is Atom so slow?


I am wondering, why is hardware acceleration enabled per default anyway? It seems like it wouldn’t add much in an editor with a largely static view image, and the slowdown it causes for some people, probably due to old gfx cards and/or buggy drivers, appears to be significant.

I know Chrome itself already has a blacklist for problematic hardware. However, maybe hw acceleration use in Atom should be restricted to some sort of whitelist of tested hardware where it isn’t only known to run, but actually known to provide any sort of tangible performance benefit?


Yup, that’s would be a great idea.

But isn’t it will affect the overall performance of the machine.


good shout. that sped thing up a lot for me. that package should be depreciated or updated.


Thank you, your suggestion also worked for me.


I’ve tried to implement Atom across the department as Sublime Text had it’s own out-of-the-box pitfalls…

Atom is simply too slow, and one of those “Look I’m built on Cool-New-Framework!” applications… (Aka Node).

On to properly tooling Sublime, Atom editor is a waste of time if you do day-to-day development. The all-around performance of it (highlighting w/ cursor lag, search & replace, default config) is terrible.

Even typing “color” brings up… Combak… as the first result. What a joke.

Stop using this POS glorified because it uses Node.


Or you could realize that other people like things for reasons that don’t include the supposed trendiness of eight-year-old frameworks, and you could stop being a jerk to people solely because you disagree with them.


Hi DamnedScholar,

I’m not trying to be a jerk, I’m being blunt about it. Also, stating Node as an “8 year old framework” as if it’s not a cool, new technology - let’s just recollect that it is a buzzword technology that is not enterprise grade.


You called a program that many people enjoy a “piece of shit”. That’s trying to be a jerk. That’s very deliberate. Anything eight years old is no longer “new” by computer standards, unless you’re still running Windows ME.

Although, let’s take another look at your rejoinder, such as it is.

let’s just recollect that it is a buzzword technology that is not enterprise grade.

You know what a buzzword is? It’s a convenient phrase that doesn’t have intrinsic meaning and sounds like authoritative jargon while generally being too broad to convey specific information in the field it purports to be jargon of. Like “enterprise grade”. If you want to dis Node for being too “buzzword”, you’re going to have to actually put your semantics where your rhetoric is.

Or, and this is just me going out on a limb here, you could stop trying to be a jerk and allow people to enjoy code editors that you don’t enjoy! Gasp!


I don’t know what’s wrong with @Web_Dev system that’s making Atom so slow, but lately I use Atom as my daily dev editor, and it beats Vim in performance by far.

Lately, I can get Vim to crash on huge files with very long lines while Atom will happily work without crashing while giving me a cursor that is more responsive than Vim’s. This is progress!

Atom has gotten much better than it was before and I’ve been very pleased now compared to 1 or 2 years ago.

The only performance problem I’ve had is with Atom IDE’s for type-checking for TypeScript in certain cases, but this isn’t Atom’s fault.


Evening disabling some of the unwanted core packages doesn’t increase the speed.


I have noticed that Atom is slow to start up for me and load, but I’ve also tracked down a lot of this delay to specific packages using timecop. I think it’s one of those situations where you have to weight if the package/s causing the lag are worth getting rid of or running without. if your load time delay is exceeded by your productivity using the package, then it might be worth dealing with the lag. If your overall system is slow, then it’s more likely something specific to Atom (like gpu). I recommend disabling all of the packages and getting a baseline. In my case I had auto-beautify on and it was lagging like a son of a gun when I saved a large file. Overall I think Atom is a great tool for productivity.


Timecop is useful, but can sometimes misrepresent times. If a package is the first to load a module shared by many, then it might appear as though it takes longer than the others.


atom is too dark to see what is going on


Brackets is too dark to see what is going on


Could you elaborate? All colours can be controlled by the theme and your stylesheet.


Thanks Ben for answering me - I am really only trying to use github and did not know where I could ask a question - so I had a go at your post and glad to see you received it. I am going to go to the place where the email said I should go to and see if i
can answer you there as well. Yes I know atom has themes but whenever I select on to install the machine just stops ie it does not go there - says something like if it does not work download atom again and this is no good at all. It is because I dont know
how to use github - although watched videos on it, one really has to have a go to see how things works - cheers TIM LEE


yes ben - to topic - i had to log in to use - so I am thinking I had better wait a while until somehow i can get the themes from github - I thought daveron-laravel-syntax would be a light one - black on blue.ray not black - or handsome - light syntax or impeccable would all be okay


Just wanted to give my two cents to this conversation. Well, i went down the road and chose the wrong tool for a job once myself. Never the less the tool was a great sucess to the once who used it. Even though it was not open source and Atom is this applies even more :

Noone forces anyone to use atom over anything else. Didnt pay antything for it in the first place. Chromium was probably not the best decision in terms of speed but surely the best when it comes to the ease of creating addons for even non sophisticated developers. And at the end i assume atom is mostly used by webdevelopers.

Whatever, this was actually not the reason i commented here in the first palce event though i get somewhat mad at some of thouse nonsense comments and even the subjects is retarded imho.


running atom.exe --disable-dev-tools speeded atom up for me tremendously after diving into chromium-dev-tools once and forgetting to disabling it afterwards.

keep up the good work, thx to the core atom team