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Flow takes a lot of time to process a simple condition

I have a flow where I update a task when I receive an update from Azure DevOps. It used to work great but now, I noticed that I get a long time of processing on tasks that shouldn't take long. For instance, I have a condition where I determine if a workItem relation is a parent (reversed) one. The condition itself is:

@equals(items('Find_WorkItem_Parent')?['rel'], 'System.LinkTypes.Hierarchy-Reverse')

Just this condition takes about a minute to evaluate! I don't get it. Any idea anyone?


Accepted Solutions

An update on my situation. I completely modified my flow to use Compose instead of variables and got execution time down to a few seconds instead of many minutes overall. I kept variables for clarity for general settings for my flow but not for variable data.


Thanks all!

View solution in original post

Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional


Hi there.  It might be the variables slowing things down.  Check out John Liu's video from the Online Flow Conference:


John Liu | 5 Keys to make your Flows run Insanely Fast – Session 18 


Keep us posted.



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So you think it's only because of the variables? Kinda makes sense but I have to rework my whole Flow as it relies on them a lot. I guess you are right. Isn't it strange that variables are that slow?

I know John is a big proponent of Compose, and he's shown me the performance differences, so I believe him.  The Flows I build aren't super complex, so it hasn't been an issue yet, but it made sense and probably couldn't hurt.





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Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi @nicolasdb 


Microsoft Flow and PowerApps have been slow today. So that could be one reason that your Flow has been taking time (assuming this was running fast earlier)


the screenhsot shared shows a case which was false, did you check and see the true case and how long the actions take then

The GetParentWorkItem might be the one taking time to respond 



Reza Dorrani


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Maybe that explains. I found another example where there is some processing after the evaluation of a condition:


Annotation 2019-09-20 084505.png

The evaluated condition looks like this:

@Or(and(and(equals(body('Parent_WorkItem_Details')?['fields']?['System.WorkItemType'], 'Projet'),
	not(or(equals(body('Parent_WorkItem_Details')?['fields']?['System.State'], 'Closed'),
	equals(body('Parent_WorkItem_Details')?['fields']?['System.State'], 'Removed')))),
	and(equals(body('Parent_WorkItem_Details')?['fields']?['System.WorkItemType'], 'Client'),
	not(equals(body('Parent_WorkItem_Details')?['id'], '217'))))

So it's similar and I don't quite understand why it takes so long to complete. After watching the video of John Liu I think I might be able to convert some variables to use compose instead but not all of them, not simply I mean. Complete rework of my logic and loops would need to be done for that...

An update on my situation. I completely modified my flow to use Compose instead of variables and got execution time down to a few seconds instead of many minutes overall. I kept variables for clarity for general settings for my flow but not for variable data.


Thanks all!

Another update! I tough everything was fine but I got another situation, even using mostly Compose actions instead of variables. The only variable I use is a list in read only for my Apply to Each.


Clipboard - 26 septembre 2019 11_15.png

And here is the code in the "If may be applied" condition:

        equals(outputs('LastTimeCampEntryID'), 0),
        greater(int(items('Apply_to_each')['id']), outputs('LastTimeCampEntryID'))
        equals(body('WorkItem_JSON')?['fields']?['Custom.TimeCampAppliedEntryIDs'], null),
        not(contains(body('WorkItem_JSON')?['fields']?['Custom.TimeCampAppliedEntryIDs'], string(items('Apply_to_each')['id'])))

Nothing special, really. Any idea anyone? It's like the process is suspended for a while and then resumes whatever it was doing. It's weird.

Anyone has an answer to my last post? I don't quite understand how a simple condition could take so much time to resolve. Here's another one:


How am I suppose to find where the problem is? I suspect the individual reported task time isn't reliable and that my problem might lie in an http request or, that my whole Flow process gets jammed at some point and thus ending taking so much time to complete. Any idea?

Kudo Commander
Kudo Commander

I'm dealing with this myself now....
trying to see if there is any difference/improvement in using a Switch or a Condition.

New Member

Hello - I am also coming across this same problem. The condition I have is taking > 1hr to supposedly execute a single contains() function.


Has anyone found a root cause/resolution for this?

Resolver II
Resolver II

Same issue occurring here. Easy, straight forward condition (field ne 3) that can take up to minutes. In the same instance other conditions take way too long too, while this flow usually runs within a few hundred milliseconds.

@nicolasdb ever found a solution?

@jsenger Sure, look at the accepted solution 😁 Using compose helped a lot.

Frequent Visitor

I've come across this recently and thought I'd update here.  I found that a condition action which finds a value in an array using "Contains", even finding one value in a list of 2000 simple array elements, can take anywhere from 10 seconds to 10 minutes depending on how far through the array it is.


Instead, if I use some select/compose magic to rebuild the array so that the item I want to search is a key value, then I can use compose to test if that key value is empty or present, and depending on the result, output 1 or 0.  Then, i can use an equals condition on the compose value, if equals 1, yes, else no.  This completes consistently in 1 second.


I'll try to post more details later if anyone is interested.  But basically, avoid "contains" in a condition, and find a way to write a compose to evaluate to 1 or 0, and condition off that.

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