Best practices for better performance in MURAL

MURAL is your go-to resource for online collaboration and the platform is designed to maximize creativity. It’s great for team projects! But no platform is without its challenges. Our mission is to be the best performing visual collaboration platform so you get the best experience. In order to help you get the most out of MURAL, we’ve compiled a summary of best practices and technical setups to set you and your teams up for success.

Impacts on performance

  1. Technical impacts on performance

  2. MURAL actions to impact performance

Technical impacts on performance

1. Recommended browsers

You can find details of the technical requirements to run MURAL here. Besides our native apps, which can be downloaded on iPads, iPhones, Android phones and tablets, MURAL runs best on Google Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Brave. We tend to see higher lag times with Safari.

2. Internet connection

Your internet connection speed also plays a role in success with MURAL. Your experience in collaboration sessions will be different with an internet connection speed of 100Mbps vs. 5Mbps. This is especially important if your murals have a large number of objects (images, embedded documents, sticky notes, shapes, etc) or images with large file sizes.

3. Older computers

MURAL is a tool for visual collaboration and relies on displaying and updating graphics on a constant basis for smooth movements on the mural canvas. We measure these updates in Frames Per Second (FPS). Typically, older computers will have lower FPS performance, whereas newer computers will have higher FPS and provide a smoother experience.

4. VPNs and corporate networks

If you are accessing MURAL from within a corporate network or VPN, your IT department may need to have MURAL allowlisted to prevent firewalls from blocking your access. With any VPN, your internet connection is most likely passing through a series of security measures, which can sometimes impact your experience with using MURAL.

Tips to maximize performance in MURAL

Recognizing that it can be hard to control for internet speeds or computing power with a group of collaborators, we want to provide recommendations for ensuring the best performance during your collaborative sessions.

1. Number of participants per session

MURAL can handle hundreds of concurrent collaborators. We generally recommend that you keep collaborative sessions to around 100 concurrent collaborators. Beyond 100 concurrent collaborators, you’re more likely to see performance lag. This lag isn’t usually prohibitive, but can be frustrating! However, we regularly see collaborative sessions with over 500 people without significant performance issues. If you have less than 100 people and are seeing performance issues, we recommend you try implementing some of the tips below.

2. Limit concurrent actions in larger groups

Generally, actions taken at the same time by collaborators can impact performance for any application that offers real-time collaboration. For example, if 200 people are trying to add a sticky note at the same time, you’re more likely to see a slow down in performance than if 20 collaborators are trying to add a sticky note. As you plan a meeting or workshop, you may want to consider ways to split up concurrent actions taken into smaller groups.

3. Limit drawing to sticky notes with larger groups

Another contributing factor to MURAL lag time is multiple users using the drawing feature at the same time. When 20+ participants are drawing at once, there is a higher chance of delays. We recommend using the drawing feature with smaller groups than 20 for best results, or using the drawing feature inside sticky notes, instead of straight on the mural.

4. Have collaborators only add images one by one

Adding multiple objects at once can also affect performance, as can duplicating lots of objects at once. Instead, we recommend adding and duplicating objects one at a time while collaborating with larger groups.

5. Upload backgrounds to your murals.
If you're going to lock most of your content within a mural while running a session with a lot of people, we’ve got a quick fix! Add the content to a different mural, then export that mural as a PNG. Once the image of the mural is ready, upload it to your original mural as a background. This will keep the content in place while you run your session, and help MURAL perform as intended for large groups.

6. Avoid larger GIFs during larger collaborative sessions

If you are running a session with over 20+ participants, we recommend that collaborators refrain from using large GIF files.

Adding multiple objects at once can also affect performance, as can duplicating lots of objects at once. Instead, we recommend adding and duplicating objects one at a time, in order to avoid performance issues.

As always, if you run into any performance issues in MURAL, please reach out to our Community site to discuss fixes with your MURAL peers. If you have any questions that aren’t answered on the Community site, please contact our Support team, who can be reached on the chat box within MURAL, or via email at support@mural.co.

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