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Futures trading on TOS, don't bother

Hi just wanted to warn anyone trading (or considering trading) futures with Thinkorswim.

I have been trading ES with them for 6 months or so, the system was fairly reliable but on busy days it would lock up. This means, delayed quotes and charts. But that's not the worst of it.

Recently I have been in the habit of sending in orders a few minutes ahead of time so that I do not have to do any guess work once price is trading around where I expect it to. This also means that I cancel about 50% of the orders I submit.

Canceling an order on TOS is a pain in itself, click a drop down menu, then click small almost unreadable text, then click a confirm box, then wait for the message "UROUT". All together about 5 seconds lost on something that should take .5 seconds.

Anyways, today and yesterday I got stuck in 2 trades I should not have been in because TOS is BUGGY. Here's what happened: I send in my limit order well ahead of time and within seconds realize that the setting is not right and press "cancel all orders". Normally I would get the UROUT message and that's that. This time I look and the cancel option is greyed out, also in the status it says "submitting". Ok so no biggy I think to myself, it's just submitting and once it has been submitted it will switch to "working" and then I can cancel it out, afterall price is still far away so I'm safe. Wrong! It gets stuck on submitting for OVER 30 seconds, the whole time I cannot cancel it no matter what, then once price is near my fill I get filled against my will. To top it off when the system is buggy like this, it will take you on a RIDE before your stops get hit. Yesterday my 3 tick stop which should be executed at market did not fill, instead I see I am still net shares, and watch as my loss goes 3X past where it should have been! Today when it happened my loss was 2X what it should have beem, actually it should have not been a loss at all, it should have canceled right when I pressed the cancel button.

In closing: If you want to NOT be able to cancel your working orders and NOT see your market stops honored, and if you enjoy charts freezing up with lags sometimes as bad as 2minutes! then TOS is the broker for you!
Unfortunately, I'd have to second that. I like TOS's platform and their customer service has been about a 9 out of 10. But as popstocks says, the TOS platform does not tolerate stress very well and it has cost me plenty of money in the past. I guess it's a good thing my confidence was shaken so bad last week - I've made only a few trades this week during slow times.

I'm thinking pt_emini's suggestion of Mirus/Ninja/ZenFire is worth taking a look at.
There is a setting @ the log on pad under options to up the ram & help performance.
I changed my setting and had no issue. I use mostly market orders
What are your min/max settings? I'm at 32/256 MB.
max 512 min 384 if you need more(according to what you run) e-mail Jon Horowitz and he will help you
POS will tell you any way they possibly can that it is on your side, reality is I have heard these horror stories from at least 20 futures traders on TOS & most have also done everything they could to diagnose the problem on their side only to realize later that the pos platform and servers are the real culprit here. Ram settings will help for quotes and charts some, but there's no way me not being able to cancel my order has anything to do with that, my computer is up to code (I've worked in IT for 10 years for f's sake and POS always had the nerve to tell me chart delays were because of my video-card lol).
FWIW I use has a great DOM platform, flatten and reverse buttons that kill any open limits, all kinds of OCO and OSO but I don't use those. and a big buy and sell market which is all I use any ways. Its just a simple DOM with nothing else, no charts or windows to bog down in fast markets. I have been using them since 2005 and they don't freeze unless its a CBOT, CME, problems which have happened. I can't ever remember a data freeze or slow down since I have been using them. There free and deepest discounts comm. of all platforms for active like myself. here;s the URL
Originally posted by culsu

What are your min/max settings? I'm at 32/256 MB.


You may already know this. You will need to empty
the garbage from time to time. This helps
performance also.
Here's another question you may have the answer to: are there any MP tools in TOS? If not, where do TOS users turn?
no MP on TOS that I know of. This forum is the best place for MP.
Lots of good traders willing to answer questions. BruceM, Charter Joe
and others who can tell you about the MP tools they use. Good people
here and thats is a good tool in itself. :)
I prefer an integrated solution provider, thus my recommendation of Mirus Ninja/Zen Fire as a low cost yet high quality complete solution.

Ninja does not provide true Market Profile however. So for those wanting an integrated trading solution with Market Profile, I recommend Trade Maven. Trade Maven provides an advanced set of time/price and volume analysis tools, and thus is the next level of above the Ninja platform. Like Mirus, Trade Maven's customer service is also 5 stars.

To trade the Index Futures markets, you must have a professional quality charting, order interface, and data feed solution. You need three things: speed, reliability & an intuitive order entry interface. High quality customer service is a nice benefit as well. Any time I need to call the desk at either Mirus or Trade Maven, I almost always get an answer at the trade desk within 3 rings.
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