Patch 2.3 Install Problems on Vista

Windows Vista is supposed to be a fair bit more secure than past versions of Windows. Whether it is or not I’ll leave up to people that know more about OS security than I do. However, a number of WoW players are having trouble getting patch 2.3 to install on Windows Vista. The problem? Security!

Vista helpHere’s the deal…The patch downloads correctly but when downloader completes and fires off the installer – the install fails. The problem – is one of permissions.

Most Vista installs are setup in such a way that the average user you are logged in as is not an administrator of the machine. If you’re not an administrator – you can’t install or patch software.

The solution is simple. Right click your World of Warcraft icon and select “Run as administrator”. This will start WoW running with administrator permissions instead of your local users permissions. The system will run through the patch process – but this time when the installer fires off, it’s running as an admin. The game should patch correctly and you’ll be pWning in no time!

Portable Macros

Dear Growl,

I love macros – and I have over a dozen of them written for different characters on all of my servers. Last week I bought a new computer and installed WOW on it. But now it looks like I need to re-write all of my macros on this new install! What a pain! Is there any way to bring my old macros over to my new computer?

Thanks!

Wardance
Thorium Brotherhood US

Great question Wardance – and the short answer is “Yes” – you can take your macros with you when you change computers. It’s actually a pretty easy! I’ll even use pictures to show how to do it! If you can’t read the thumbnails – just click the image for a larger view!

First off you need to understand that there are two kinds of macros. For simplicities sake we’re going to call them:

General Macros and Character Specific Macros

What’s the difference? Easy – just open up your macro interface while you’re in game. You’ll notice that the macro creation window has two tabs.

General Macros

The default tab in the macro creation window are for macros that will be available to *every* character you play. No matter which toon you’re logged onto – you can always open up the macro creation interface and those same macros will be available to every character in your account. The default tab is a great place to put commonly used macros that all of your characters might use – like common emotes, bandage macros, and trade or guild barkers.

The second tab is character specific. In other words – if Wardance is logged on and he creates a macro in tab-2 (Wardance’s Macros) – those macros will *only* be available to that character. This tab is a great place to put macros that your other toons don’t need access to. For example – the hunter you have on the same account isn’t going to need a macro that will help him spam “Sunder Armor and Shield Block.”

Blizzards developer trolls save these macros in text files and store them on your hard-drive. By knowing where you look for the files themselves, you can easily take them with you to another install of World of Warcraft by simply copying the files to a memory-stick or a portable hard-drive. The files are quite small, so you shouldn’t have a problem taking them with you.

The first thing you need to do is learn where your macros live. For most players on Windows Systems you’ll simply need to look on your hard-drive for your World of Warcraft installation.

PC Users:

Most likely your WOW install lives in one of two places:

C:\World of Warcraft or C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft

Mac Users:

Just open your Applications Folder – it’s in there (too easy!)

One thing to keep in mind is that the Mac and PC Installs are virtually identical in regards to the folder structures that we’re going to be working with. I use a mac much of the time – so the majority of the screen shots will be from a Mac. PC users – don’t fear – your World of Warcraft folder looks virtually identical. For what we’re here to do today – all of the folder and file names are exactly the same.

So – the next step is to find the WTF folder (no jokes please) – the WTF folder holds user interface (UI) and addon information for each of your characters. Inside of the WTF folder is a folder called “Account” that includes all of the registered accounts you use to play the game.

Select your account name and open that folder. Inside are a number of files – look for the following:

macros-cache.txt
This is where Blizzard hides your General Macros. To take these macros with you – simply grab a copy of the file and move it to the same location on your new computer.

To find your Character Specific Macros, look at the other folders here. If you play characters on multiple servers, you’ll see a folder for each server you play on. Find the server that houses the character whose macros you’d like to copy and open that folder.

Inside are folders for all of the characters you “own” on that server. Find the character who’s macros you’d like to bring with you and open that folder. Inside you’ll find another macros-cache.txt file. In this file are all of that characters custom macros.

Now this is pretty simple to do, but there’s actually an easier way to bring not only your macros, but also all of your key-bindings, addon settings, and interface settings along to a new computer. Simply copy the entire WTF folder and place it on your new computer.

If you choose to do this – use caution. Corrupt or overly large WTF folders are often the cause of a great deal of problems for WoW players, including graphical problems and increased lag.

That said, if your current install is problem free, it’s often not a bad idea to keep a backup of your WTF folder on a thumb-drive or external hard-drive. I travel a lot and often swap between a work laptop (with WOW on it) or any of two or three different Mac or PC laptops that belong in our family. I always keep an updated copy of my Addons folder (to keep all of my addons updated) and a copy of my WTF folder. If I’m going out of town and plan on playing a little WoW – I’ll make sure to update the install on the computer that I’ll be bringing with me – with the most recent versions of both of these folders. That way – all of my addons are current – and I don’t have to recreate any of my UI settings or rewrite any macros!

When Things Don’t Work

I found my macros files on my old system and went to copy it to the WTF->Accounts->Account Name folder on my new computer. But the folder wasn’t there. Did it get deleted? Am I looking in the wrong place?

No – chances are – you’re working with a brand new install and haven’t yet logged into the game or played a character on this new install. Until you log into the game and into the game world on a character – the folders you’re looking for won’t exist. The same can be said for your character specific macros. If you’ve never logged that character in on your new system – that characters folder won’t exist. Log into the character first – then close out of the game and find the folder!

That’s all for today! Macros are great tools and can help give you the edge in a number of situations. Don’t lose all the hard work you’ve put into those macros by not knowing how to back them up! If you run into questions or know of other great ways to make your WoW more portable – e-mail to us here at Gitrknowswow!

It’s Patch Day – US Realms Offline

Patch Day!I woke up too late this morning (well, after my shower) to get in an nab some last minute bid auctions. I’m pretty pumped about the patch. This is the day we’ve been waiting for. I have my lowbie alts in Orgrimmar for a quick flight to Duskwallow Marsh and can’t wait for tonight’s class at university to end so I can get home and log in.

Growl will be bringing you more stuff shortly, so be sure to check in later, if you can make yourself stop trying to log in to your account.

Growl’s Guide to Taming Rak’shiri

Hey Folks, Growl here – and today we’re going to talk about bagging one of the rare cats of Azeroth, the sublime striped beauty, Rak’shiri from beautiful Winterspring.

Now Rak’shiri for those of you that haven’t seen her is a big white saber cat with aqua stripes. See her there – a real beut ain’t she?

Rak'shiri

Nothing like seeing those glowing green eyes staring out at you from the dark I can tell you that much – crikey!

Anyway – enough of that. First things first – to get Rak’shiri, you need to be in your 57th season (or level 57 for you folks that don’t grok Ar-Pee) and it helps if you have an addon that can show you your coordinates on the world map. Growl uses and recommends Titan Panel for this, but there are lots of options.

The next thing you need in fair amounts is patience – I can’t stress this enough. Rak’shiri is a rare spawn that shows up approximately every eight hours or so. Some of you will follow this guide and nab her on the first try. Others won’t be so lucky and it could take days. If you plan to lay in a semi-permanent camp for this fine cat, I’ve scouted a good spot for you already and will detail the location later on.

So first things first – get your fuzzy-loving self to Winterspring.

Remember though, this is a high-stakes tame in contested territory (for those of you on a PvP server) and the area you’re hunting in is positively *full* of other deadly cats. Make sure to bring plenty of bandages and don’t forget to bring along a stack of meat or fish. After all you’re likely going to need to accomplish not *one* but *two* tames to successfully camp Rak’shiri. Why two tames? Because unless you plan on abandoning your existing pet in favor of Rak’shiri, a temporary companion is highly recommended.

There are a lot of options in Winterspring when it comes to finding a temporary pet. So keep on the lookout as you travel. Good options that are very close to Everlook include the Shard-Tooth Bears and Winterspring Owls. If you don’t mind a bit of travel (and if you’ve enough level for them) any of the graceful, Frostsaber Huntresses or Frostsaber Stalkers found near Rak’shiri’s hunting grounds are also excellent companions.

Once in Everlook, talk to Azzleby and stable your existing pet. Check your bags one last time for meat/fish and prepare to move out.

Azzleby Ready? Good – mount up and lets go find Rak’shiri!

First off, best thing to do is know where you’re going – so lets do a bit of map recon. Open your world map and mark a waypoint around 51.14. That’s the spot I recommend you set your camp up on. The route is simple – just follow the road south to Frost Saber Rock. There are depressions east and west of the road. Both are full of cats. The westerly valley is the one we’re after.

Now a word of warning: while never a particularly traveled environ, Winterspring is even more devoid of other players now that the Burning Crusade is live. That said, it’s still advisable for those on PvP servers to keep their professional sense of paranoia on at least medium alert. Not only are there are stealthed Wintersaber Stalkers nearby (so watch out for them) – but the scent of a rare pet attracts other hunters…particularly those from the opposite faction.

Map of Winterspring

So – once you arrive and clear out one or two of the stealthed cats, you can mount the crest of the small hill around 51.13 – 51.14.

This is a good point for your high-hide. None of the big cats path through the hill and you have a commanding view of the deceptively empty valley to your north.

Okay – here’s where the patience part comes in. Remember that 8 to 10 hour spawn rate? Right. Get comfortable. A number of big cats prowl the western depression. Most are the solid white Wintersaber Huntresses or Stalkers. From time to time though, a black striped Wintersaber will path into view and get your heart racing.

Be calm – make sure to check your target – you’re looking for the tell-tail silver dragon icon to mark your quarry. When you catch the big azure striped cat he’ll likely be pathing straight toward you (or away.) Use caution – that peaceful snowy lowland is a furry valley of fang filled death. The HillStealthed Frostsaber Stalkers fill the valley around Rak’shiri’s patrol path. For lower level hunters, simply setting foot off your hilltop will invite an immediate attack. Unless you’re worried about your quarry getting sniped by another hunter or killed by some clueless schmuck, hold your position and watch the rare cat patrol its territory. With some careful killing or creative use of feign death you can work your way into taming distance. The rest is fairly simple – drop a freeze trap – concussive shot – and start taming.

Taming Rak'shiri

Taming a rare spawn like Rak’shiri is one of the best parts of being a hunter. While rare spawn pets no longer have special skills or faster attack speeds, many, like Rak’shiri have skins that are unique in the game.

In fact, the only other big cat that shares the same skin as Rak’shiri is the mighty Shy Rhotam – who is the target of a Horde only quest – and almost impossible for Alliance characters to tame.

Tips For Making Your Hunt Successful

  • Create a simple macro to make your hunt easier – bind it to a key for spamming while you’re camping: /target Rak’shiri
  • Park your character on our camp spot and log off. Play an alt or spend some time with the spouse. Check back at the top of each hour. While it’s tough to guess Rak’shiri’s actual spawn cycle – checking back on a regular interval lets you live your life while also camping this rare spawn
  • If you *can* – check for Rak’shiri right after server maintenance or nightly server resets. These actions should restart the spawn timers. It’s also a good time to catch the big cat and not have to worry about other hunters beating you to the tame.
  • If you’re a skinner – and don’t mind killing some time farming – clear the valleys of all the cats. Lots of rugged leather to be had. Killing the Wintersabers won’t make Rak’shiri spawn any faster, but the leather can be sold or crafted. Use the time to practice jump-shots or level weapon skills.

There you go folks – while Aunty Growl can’t guarantee you’ll find Rak’shiri on the first try – ifyou follow this guide, you’re guaranteed (eventual) success! Stay focused, stay positive and try not to squee too loud the first time you see those bright emerald eyes gazing back at you!
Successful tame of Rak'shiri