Yeah ok. Sorry but I've been on this issue for +2 years now and it's really not ok anymore.. You want to deal with everyone individually but that's just clear to me that there is no "general" solution in sight.
The FPP plugin has been sluggish and slowing down max for a long time now.
Watch this, watch that, check ini files, dump-files; ...
Are you serious? This plugin should be standard stable before release and preferably bug-free.
Bigger files are just impossible. Dont fukin dream of "edge" mode you'll completely kill your parsing times. We installed, uninstalled, removed plugins and added everything again and it's almost impossible to find the bottleneck. All I know is when opening files the Forest Pack Pro plugin is making my files +10 minutes to open now. When installled fresh it works fine for about a week and the bullshit starts again. Did you add a ticking-timer in there for us to enjoy?
I've been working with Corona Scatter now on my new project and I can honestly say this FPP plugin is starting to get overrated for basic vegetation spreading. What's the point for using a spead-plugin if we're losing more time on this bullshit then gaining in rendering or parsing. It's just not fun anymore to use for the past 3 years... HOW MANY VERSIONS NOW?
I'm sorry you have these problems, but as you said there is not a general solution for all issues.
You're assuming that Forest Pack is buggy, and we can solve this problem with a patch or releasing a stable version.
Sometimes there are bugs (which we solve as soon are identified), but many problems are specific to the scene, Max configuration, or even compatibility with other plugins.
More than 10 minutes to load a Forest scene is not normal, at least you're using a heavy feature (as Collisions or Edge mode) over a huge terrain.
Futhermore, if you said that plugin works fine for some time when reinstalled. Well, of course there is not any hidden timer in our software, but also the plugin is exactly the same when you reinstall it. We don't store any persistent data in the disk.
Regarding other tools, Forest Pack is more complex and has much more features that other scattering plugins.
For example, you said that Edge mode is killing your parse times. Please note this feature was not intended for far views or large terrains, because it must check and store the position of each grass blade.
As far as i know, Corona or Chaos Scatter don't include a similar feature, so we cannot compare the efficiency with Forest Pack.
I know it can be a hassle, but i suggest you send us a sample scene
so we can compare loading/render times here.
Thanks for your understanding.