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I have Mathematica 11.3 installed on two PCs. My home PC runs Linux and does not have a problem. On my office PC (Windows 7) I find that on start up, pressing F1 to get context sensitive help is initially unresponsive. After some delay, it then starts behaving normally.

Any suggestions would be very welcome.

I note the following:

  • The firewall slows, but doesn't totally prevent access to the internet. I thought that I might be suffering from a timeout in waiting for a response from a Wolfram server, but the problem does not go away if I select the option to disable internet access.

  • The virus checker probably does on-access checks on the first attempt to read any file.

  • The delay after pressing F1 might be of the order of 30 s, during which period Mathematica is unresponsive. I don't think help pops up at the end of this period, but I can then get help by pressing F1 again.

  • There are other start up delays (e.g. autocomplete, starting the kernel). I've never known starting the kernel to fail. I'm not sure on autocomplete.

  • Once start up delays are resolved, performance is good.

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  • $\begingroup$ How long is "some delay"? are other front-end features like auto-complete available during the delay? $\endgroup$ – Jason B. Sep 14 '18 at 21:54
  • $\begingroup$ @JasonB. edited to answer your comments, thanks. $\endgroup$ – mikado Sep 14 '18 at 22:02
  • $\begingroup$ Can you try to go to Edit | Preferences | Internet and disable "Allow access to the Internet"? What I definitely know is that Mathematica is unresponsive as long as it tries to log into the Wolfram Cloud. This is a long-time annoyance I experience myself. $\endgroup$ – halirutan Sep 14 '18 at 22:16
  • $\begingroup$ @halirutan I tried disabling "Allow access to the Internet" and didn't see any difference. If it makes a difference for you, I'll try it again. $\endgroup$ – mikado Sep 14 '18 at 22:18
  • $\begingroup$ How long does it take Mathematica to start up in the first place? Is it running off of an HDD or SSD? I'd guess it's a combination of a somewhat slower drive, slowed down by the virus checker further on the first file access, combined with some attempts by the OS or Mathematica to cache the documentation when first pressing F1. $\endgroup$ – eyorble Sep 14 '18 at 23:26

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