I've understood that it's good practice to always use an "End" activity to free resources and improve overall performance. However, I find the information regarding the "End" activity to be conflicting, and I wonder if someone could help clear this confusion up?
Yes, the end activity is a graphically mark for the end of a workflow.
It has No functional impact like query or split or like any other activity. But, Ofcourse If we use end activity at the end of the Workflow, it will free up temporary space of that workflow.
Example, Consider You have a workflow ((Start-> Query ->Split -> )) and if you wont enable 'Keep the result of interim population between two execution' in workflow property, You wont be able to see the record in between query and split activity by giving 'display the target'. It will show 'Unable to read data, table has been purged'.
But you can see the data in the transition coming out from split, Which means the temporary table data got purged in between 2 activities, whereas it is not purged at last open transitions. And we can notice workflow will be in paused state.
So when we use end activity at end of the workflow, all temporary data will get purged. You wont be able to see data between split and end activity by giving 'display the target'. And workflow will be in finished state.
So it is a good practice to use End activity at end of the workflow.