I am not aware of any change in the time it takes. This could be highly variable depending on the user's PC. Many factors could play a role. I had discussion with the team, and these are some of the reasons that I could some up.
This include things like:
- Hard drive type, age/degradation, or level of fragmentation
- External file locations (e.g. local disk vs network location)
- Complexity of assembly (number and size of external components)
- Possible file inflation due to the continued use of external components. This one could be substantial. When an external component (let's name it EC) is saved within an assembly, location information for all other components from the assembly is saved within the external component and retained. Each time EC is added to another assembly and saved, more assembly information is added to EC. This can cause the file size to increase by orders of magnitude and will greatly affect performance. This problem is not uncommon. We now have a utility that will help remove this extra information. The recommended workflow is to add the external component(s) and then use Source > Internalize All to create internal copies of the component and break the link to the original file. Of course this poses the problem where updates to the master EC are not automatically applied to every assembly where EC is used, so it's not a perfect solution. The work around would be to add the ECs last before the assembly is finalized.