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Is Thinkorswim a good Platform for Futures Trading?
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Is Thinkorswim a good Platform for Futures Trading?

  #151 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
What are your computer specs? Processor, memory, SSD?

Mike

Hi, BigMike .... good to see you!

The desktop I use is a Windows 7, i5 quad core, 3.0 ghz, 16gb RAM, 7500 rmp HDD, running 3 Monitors on a high-end all digital graphics card with 2gb of memory, and 1 USB external monitor. I have a 700 watt power supply, and a UPS 1500 with plenty of power to spare. My broadband speed is 50 Mbps when running TOS in a fast market. The only other program I'm running with TOS is McAfee Security Suite.

I have adequate equipment. It's the JAVA and C# or C++ that TOS is programmed in. It's a MAJOR RAM hog. I use 2 custom indicators, and a few that are part of TOS. I've customized the crap out of TOS, and now it's impossible to use since the last major update. I'm not the only one experiencing this either. There are others chatting about it online.

I should add that I've been over this extreme-lag issue with TDA Tech Support three times. Each time they've altered the "vmoptions" file, and deleted the "usergui" file so it can be rebuilt upon exit and re-launch. None of it made a bit of difference. The reason for the lag (they say), is the complexity of my setup.

OK .... but why did it work PERFECTLY before the last update?

Frustration does not fully describe my dilemma of having to change brokers and my platform.

Where's the crying emoticon?


Last edited by Zephyr; December 17th, 2014 at 08:10 PM.
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  #152 (permalink)
Elite Member
Chicago, IL
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: ThinkorSwim, NT7/8
Broker/Data: TDA, Doorman/NTB
Favorite Futures: index,energy
 
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Zephyr View Post
Hi, BigMike .... good to see you!

The desktop I use is a Windows 7, i5 quad core, 3.0 ghz, 16gb RAM, 7500 rmp HDD, running 3 Monitors on a high-end all digital graphics card with 2gb of memory, and 1 USB external monitor. I have a 700 watt power supply, and a UPS 1500 with plenty of power to spare. My broadband speed is 50 Mbps when running TOS in a fast market. The only other program I'm running with TOS is McAfee Security Suite.

I have adequate equipment. It's the JAVA and C# or C++ that TOS is programmed in. It's a MAJOR RAM hog. I use 2 custom indicators, and a few that are part of TOS. I've customized the crap out of TOS, and now it's impossible to use since the last major update. I'm not the only one experiencing this either. There are others chatting about it online.

I should add that I've been over this extreme-lag issue with TDA Tech Support three times. Each time they've altered the "vmoptions" file, and deleted the "usergui" file so it can be rebuilt upon exit and re-launch. None of it made a bit of difference. The reason for the lag (they say), is the complexity of my setup.

OK .... but why did it work PERFECTLY before the last update?

Frustration does not fully describe my dilemma of having to change brokers and my platform.

Where's the crying emoticon?


Hey Zephyr,
Have you tried adjusting the "memory usage" in the settings? TOS does use a ton of RAM but I've found that if I set the memory usage to 1024-1280 the platform runs very stable with basically no lag for me. If i had that set to say 512-1280 or 1280-1280 it would become unstable and laggy. My TOS workspace consists of 7 windows with multiple time frame charts and my laptop consists of win 8.1, I3 2.4GHZ, 12G ram and use the main laptop screen along with a 27'' monitor through HDMI. I hope you get your issue resolved!

AEM


Last edited by aem14; December 17th, 2014 at 08:48 PM. Reason: added more
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  #153 (permalink)
Elite Member
Hammonton NJ
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker/Data: NT Continuum
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Zephyr View Post
First of all, let me say that I am a BIG fan of TOS and TDA for swing trading.

That being said, using TOS for day trading futures is next to LUDICROUS! TOS has become MAJOR BLOATWARE, to the point that it's only usable if you have simplest and most minimal setup. FORGET IT if you have custom or complex indicators, or use more than 2-4 charts. The lag on TOS makes it impossible to trade safely.

I've reached my absolute limit of frustration with the forced beta-testing that requires you to install their sub-par programming without adequate pre-testing - OR your permission. They've had so many complaints about this, that they've hidden the update installations. You'll log into your platform one day and find major surprises that prevent you from trading that day .... or longer. Not the least of these is the memory hog TOS has become. And they don't fix the problems in a timely manner - IF EVER.

I'm forced to find another broker for a day trading and execution platform now, and I'm upset about it quite honestly. If I could use AMIBROKER for day trading, I'd do it in a heartbeat. It's an incredibly efficient platform with superior programming. But they don't have a DOM. That's a BIG downside!

On the other hand, TDA is a very good broker and I'm staying with them for swing trading futures and stocks. But I wouldn't dare risk another dime with them trying to day trade with TOS.


This thread has been interesting to read, as someone who is just starting out with futures. I've taken the negative posts with a grain of salt and was optimistic about using ToS for futures because of how great it is for stock and option trading--how could they not offer a competent futures platform?

Well, after a brief two weeks on the platform, I have found to my disappointment that two very basic aspects of my trading plan cannot be supported by ToS: tick-based alerts and the one 15-minute study alert I use. They don't support tick-based studies at all, and the 15-minute MACD crossover study alert I created is useless: it triggers in random bunches when the MACD plots are nowhere near crossing each other, and no notification at all when they do cross. Basic functionality that surprisingly was not picked up in testing. After a half-hour on the phone and leading the rep through a LogMeIn session, he had to admit that it was a bug and submitted it for repair. Who knows when it will be prioritized up the list for the developers to address?

So what should I do? Muddle along with ToS and stare at charts all day because the alerts I need don't work, or invest that same time learning another brokerage platform? I'll start out searching the futures.io (formerly BMT) site for broker and platform recommendations. Looks like Ninja is very popular and supports most of the studies on the futures.io (formerly BMT) site.

BTW, a ToS rep lowered my futures commission from $2.50 to $1.50 and encouraged me to call him back directly in January to see if my activity warrants lowering it even further.

Geoff

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  #154 (permalink)
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Futures Experience: None
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@Zephyr @DionysusToast

As far as a DOM goes how about Jigsaw?

And for charts either Ninja or Sierra?

I'm running two monitors, two charts - one chart has a handful of scripts and the other several with one relatively heavy on calculations.

For now I'm using Infinity for the DOM/ broker.

Also for ToS limit the amount of scripts you have loaded even if you are not using them.

I forget the exact memory usage settings I have for ToS but IIRC it's somewhere in the middle.

Oh and do a Daley - collect garbage early and collect garbage often

-Bill_M

PS as far as a broker goes, IMO use a broker that specializes in futs

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  #155 (permalink)
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Prospect, KY. USA
 
Futures Experience: None
Platform: Sierra Chart
Broker/Data: Infinity
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Posts: 680 since Jan 2012
Thanks: 301 given, 600 received

/CL - oil

Since this is a thread about ToS/ platform/ futures

I do know this - daily volume data for ToS is not even close to what the CME reports

Is it light years apart? No, but it makes me think - WTF?

Volume is volume esp daily volume

Cheers, ride safe and keep the rubber side down

-Bill

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  #156 (permalink)
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WilleeMac View Post
@Zephyr @DionysusToast

As far as a DOM goes how about Jigsaw?

And for charts either Ninja or Sierra?

I'm running two monitors, two charts - one chart has a handful of scripts and the other several with one relatively heavy on calculations.

For now I'm using Infinity for the DOM/ broker.

Also for ToS limit the amount of scripts you have loaded even if you are not using them.

I forget the exact memory usage settings I have for ToS but IIRC it's somewhere in the middle.

Oh and do a Daley - collect garbage early and collect garbage often

-Bill_M

PS as far as a broker goes, IMO use a broker that specializes in futs

Thank you, Bill. I've never heard of Jigsaw. I will look it up. I will also remove ALL of the indicators/scripts that are not part of the program, and see if that helps with the RAM issue.


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  #157 (permalink)
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Posts: 41 since Aug 2009
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aem14 View Post
Hey Zephyr,
Have you tried adjusting the "memory usage" in the settings? TOS does use a ton of RAM but I've found that if I set the memory usage to 1024-1280 the platform runs very stable with basically no lag for me. If i had that set to say 512-1280 or 1280-1280 it would become unstable and laggy. My TOS workspace consists of 7 windows with multiple time frame charts and my laptop consists of win 8.1, I3 2.4GHZ, 12G ram and use the main laptop screen along with a 27'' monitor through HDMI. I hope you get your issue resolved!

AEM

Thanks, AEM. The adjustment made to my RAM settings by Tech Support was to up the RAM to the max (13,000+), and the minimum to one step down at (8,000+). It didn't help. The program is still too resource intensive.

Appreciate your suggestion though!


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  #158 (permalink)
1.Fibs 2.??? 3.Profit
Puerto Rico
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: thinkorswim
Broker/Data: TD Ameritrade
Favorite Futures: ES
 
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Posts: 384 since Oct 2010
Thanks: 3,597 given, 420 received

Before market open the program runs smooth, but once the ticker starts flying it can get laggy for me. I reduced my quote speed from real-time to fast and that helped a lot. I've had it real-time forever but recently it seems my pc can't handle it. Fast is good enough for me for scalping. If I was swing trading I would have it slower. My pc is an i7-4770k cpu 3.50GHz with 8gb ram and 256sd drive.

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  #159 (permalink)
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I just want to add that I'm over my rant about TOS. To be VERY CLEAR .... I'm a HUGE fan of TOS and TDA. I feel my money is safer with this Broker, their customer support is EXCELLENT in my experience, and there are many, many benefits offered by TDA. I wouldn't swing trade with anyone else. I don't want to go elsewhere AT ALL.

But I can't day trade with TOS, so I need to find another solution. I'm not a fan of NinjaTrader after using it for 3 years. I love their ATM, but their charting sucks and it's never gotten better. I'm going to look at Sierra Charts next. I won't be going the MultiCharts route for other reasons.

I appreciate all of the suggestions and help I've received here. You guys are WAY COOL!


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  #160 (permalink)
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rmejia View Post
Before market open the program runs smooth, but once the ticker starts flying it can get laggy for me. I reduced my quote speed from real-time to fast and that helped a lot. I've had it real-time forever but recently it seems my pc can't handle it. Fast is good enough for me for scalping. If I was swing trading I would have it slower. My pc is an i7-4770k cpu 3.50GHz with 8gb ram and 256sd drive.

Please register on futures.io to view futures trading content such as post attachment(s), image(s), and screenshot(s).

This is a good suggestion. Thank you!

I agree that the program runs OK before market hours. But when the market opens, it's unreliable. And this is a recent event that TOS/TDA knows about. They are blaming it on the traders setups and indicators, but this most recent problem happened with the last update, and it's happened before with other updates. The programmers of TOS need to work out the memory management of the program itself.

Thanks, "rmejia".


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