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I have read that SC uses a temporary table to store the records for pagination purposes.. and that these inserts can cause some slowness with tables that have lots of data.
Does version 8 still do this?
I never heard of this but actually it's not the technique but performance that matters. There are a lot of considerations there. In general sql you cannot have cursors that go up and down so you need to subselect on pagination. If you tables are huge and you sql poor then you will run into problems. But that's not a SC matter imho. We run apps with thousands of users (University environment) and we don't have performance issues.
I think grid apps use temporary tables and that's why you can do all sorts of nifty things, far beyond pagination. That's why if you change the underlying data and don't refresh the grid, you won't see the change immediately.
Generate a simple grid application with a table that has a lot of records... you will find that when you generate the simple grid... everything works smooth. now enable the summary functinoality and create groups...There is where the problem begins... tbh is not scriptcase fault... it's design is good enough to do such work optimally but when the data is 2 big then the grid app will take its time.
Regarding the kind of information you use I would recommend the use of filters whenever you generate a grid application. for example I've generated applications with heavy data successfully by reducing the data universe using date filters for example...