Thursday, October 16, 2008

October 16, 2008
Egads, the addon list is flooded with red, and my interface is a loading horror. It was to be expected of course, but to make matters worse, the WoW Ace team has discontinued their WinAceUpdater. See their announcement here. It was announced a long time hence already, but It's still a bastard trick to do it on patch day. It's understandable to some degree though, several million people were using the tool, and the cost of keeping the servers up and running during heavy load (such as patch days) was no longer being balanced by the meagre income from the advertisements. Some of you may know, they've been working with the curse team for a good while already, mainly being helped with bandwidth. But, as of this week there's no way back to the old WAU. Instead you'll now receive an error in your WAU client and log files that will inform you to go and visit this link and download the Curse Client. There's plenty of people who will, I'm sure. But personally I really can't be bothered with curse. Aside the fact that I've once again forgotten my username and password on that site.... The site layout is horrible beyond belief. I could list a number of things that could be improved, but I'd just be helping them in the end. The older layout from a year or 2 was better, get a clue guys, and kill the need to do "everything". Focus on WoW. On top of that... The curse client needs you to log in. Didn't I just say I forgot my username and password? Of course I could recover them, easily enough, but why on earth do you persist in having people log in to update something as simplistic as addons? It wasn't needed before, it should certainly not be needed today. Salvation Fear not, as there are alternatives. Or at least one so far that I could find. The program goes by the name of WoW Matrix and supports over 1500 individual addons, including most of the ones that the old WAU used to support. Isn't that great? It even supports Vista (ugh /spit), which is something the curse client doesn't. I've managed to install it and update most of the addons I got running. A few things came to my attention.
  • Ace 2 is going away, all hail Ace 3
  • Bartender 3 doesn't work anymore, all hail Bartender 4! Even though it took me the better part of the evening to re-configure. /sigh
  • Prat 2 no longer functions, all hail Prat 3!
  • Onebag, Onebank, Fizzwidget's disenchant predictor and several others don't work yet, but the addon creators will fix these soon (tm) / hopefully. Plenty of addon updates will be coming to your wow client the next few weeks surely. What will you be using to get them? Manually update 100+ addons? HAH! I think not.

    Anonymous said...

    I feel like a preacher these days, but I can't help but show people a link, posted by addon authors who mostly despise WoWMatrix: Why WowMatrix is bad.

    I am an addonaholic, but I have gone back to manually updating. In a way I already feel like I have more control over my addons now. Curse Client is no alternative to WAU for me.

    bbr said...

    I see, that's pretty bad then.
    Some of the grievances could be fixed pretty easily though, such as showing the "real" URL or addon homepage.

    I haven't quite put much time into toc files, but wouldn't it be possible to add additional information into such a file? All you'd need then is to get wowmatrix to display that info. Description, info, warnings, credits, how to use the addon etc. It could even be a standardized text or xml file included into the package. You'd just need to find a way to normalize it for all addon creators.

    Leeching bandwidth is a bit more of a tricky matter though, since addon sites pay for that with their own advertisements, which then don't get shown.
    They'd have to sort something out in that regard on their own, but that's mostly something that wowui, curse, etc need to take care of.

    jwowupdater that i saw mentioned in that thread seems fairly incomplete still. How fast is it, does it support a lot of addons, etc?

    Curse isn't an option unless they clean up their act, but they certainly have the most resources available to make something "good" that everyone can simply use like the WAU used to be. Shame they chose the annoying way with paid subscriptions and login accounts.

    Unknown said...

    Seriously, curse client does support VISTA. I am using it and it works.

    WowMatrix should not be used if you respect other people resources and property. Just read and the comments.

    Ray said...

    JWU or jwowupdater is a very good program that lets you update from various sites once you setup properly. Updates and upgrades are done regularly and I highly recommend it.

    Ray said...


    JWU just ended. This is a very sad week in the world of addon updaters.

    bbr said...

    So, it's a choice between the immoral, and the useless.

    If curse can make their client actually stable, and userfriendly I'll consider using it. A monopoly is a very bad thing in this regard.

    Perhaps the owners of the thott/wowhead etc networks could be interested in creating something competitive?

    Alexandre said...

    Have you take a look at WoWus ???


    Automated Scanning & Downloading
    Once WoWus is up and running, simply click on the List Updates button to begin. WoWus will then scan your World of Warcraft installation for add-ons and compare them with the database to see which ones require updating. If an update is found, it is added to the add-ons list ready for you to choose to download. Clicking on the Get Updates button will prompt WoWus to automatically download the selected add-ons to your computer ready for installation.

    Automated Backup & Installation
    When the required updates have been downloaded, you are asked if you would like them installed. Continuing with the installation will cause WoWus to first back-up the add-ons to be updated (should you want to roll-back the update for any reason) and then install them into the required location. Warcraft can now be launched and the add-on will be ready to be used!

    Add-On Management
    As well as providing access to the backed-up add-ons, the Management area also provides functionality for interacting with your currently installed add-ons using an interface similar to the one utilised in the Backup area.

    Add-Ons Database
    WoWus makes use of a continually updated online database of the latest most popular add-ons available for World of Warcraft. This ensures that you have the most up-to-date installations of your favourites without the fuss of locating and comparing versions.

    Backup & Restore
    WoWus can back-up game settings, add-ons, item cache, and logs in a World of Warcraft installation for restoration at a later date.

    Tweaks and Fixes
    The Management area of WoWus also features tools that allow you to comfortably tweak hidden World of Warcraft settings using an easy-to-use interface and to fix common problems with the game.

    Last, but Certainly Not Least ...
    WoWus updates any add-ons and isn't tied to a particular website; the reason for this is that WoWus was created by someone (that's me - hi!) that does not run an add-on site; therefore, the add-on updater isn't part of a hidden agenda to farm users and extract money from them on a monthly basis via a subscription model or otherwise. For example.

    bbr said...

    wowus. I see, looks interesting, but haven't heard of it before. I highly recommend you remove the google ads and replace them with something less invested with gold seller adverts though.

    And, extra functionality for donators, isn't that exactly what curse is doing?

    I'll see if i can find some people who've tried to use your software, maybe get some more opinions on it :)

    Alexandre said...

    Its not my software, i am just a user.

    The extra functionality for donators is the ability to search for add-ons right on the program, but when i want a new add-on, i just go to the add-ons sites and look for what a i want. I only use WoWus to keep my add-ons updated, and i found the update process way faster than wowmatrix one.


    Funeral said...

    WoWMatrix is awesome. I love it simply for the fact that I can search for addons from within it. I don't have to go to a browser and look for addons associated with "Crit" or "Healing"... man I like that program.