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That is sorta to be expected. If you have a local copy then you already have ALL the data. If the file is hosted on FMS, you have only the data that you need. When you run a big report FMS has to ship you the data to be cached locally.
If the data is mostly static you could "pre-aggreage" it on a schedule so that you don't have to keep summarizing the same data (for instance last year's sales by month -> not going to change anymore)
There may also be other ways to run your report that do not involve summaries but for that we'd have to see the script and understand the data architecture.
Thanks so much, my friend, and your advisement makes perfect sense. The report in question, after all, is probably around 250-300 pages long; it's by a long shot the longest report I've seen generated out of any Filemaker solution I ever devised. In that regard, 30 seconds to compile doesn't slight Filemaker in the least; I've seen SAP solutions take minutes to compile far smaller reports : )
I'll keep this notion in mind when devising solutions with potentially lengthy reports (especially those with summaries). Thank you!