We've just upgraded to SDL Tridion 2011 from 2009 and we're having some performance issues loading 'heavy' components within the CME.
Our problem component is a 'container' style component that contains about 30 embedded elements of content ( the schema contains an embeddable repeatable field with 30 populated instances) . The page is simply timing out when trying to load all of the used components.
Other than increasing the IIS time out, is there anything we should be looking at to improve the performance in terms of caching data in the CME, tweaking the database connection?
Browsers handle script execution recursion differently. The following article explains the differences in when a browser will believe script recursion is a problem, e.g. by default IE is after 5 million recursions where as Firefox and Chrome appear time based. (FF can be altered in the about:config).
In addition to the regular database tuning activities Bart has mentioned. You might want to check with SDL Customer Support. For 2011 SP1 HR1 there are a number of fixes that address CME performance.
Further to that, if your database is Oracle 11G, it can be "smarter" at optimizing performance but actually has the opposite effect for the Tridion application. In this case, you can do deep level performance optimizations, such as fixing execution plans for some tables. It's always worthwhile talking to the DBA to see if he can see areas where the performance is low and discuss those with the SDL Customer Support team.