Quantcast Why do you need to update your addons ? - WoWInterface
 
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05-10-09, 01:09 AM   #1
Bluspacecow
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Why do you need to update your addons ?

I made this post on the Curse forums but no one seems to be interested in discussion on it. I'm not sure if I should have this here or in the tutorials forums. I've altered it a little from the Curse post version but here goes :

Why do you guys need an addon updater client at all ?

There seems to be a general attitude in the addon community that you absolutely need an addon updater client to keep all your addons updated and "omg you has to do it every single day or else your addons will break in the middle of a maly raid and you mights wipe the raid" and that "omg updating addons is so hard . I use a gazillion mods and it would take me for ever manually"

Let's get back to basics here guys ....

You download addons. You install addons. This process is very simple to do.

Why do you need to update them ?

Why there could be bugs. The code may take up an extra 400k of memory because of inefficient use of tables, It could be interferring with another addon. Blizzard might of come out with new patch changing how the api the addon uses works. Any number of reasons.

What can happen if you don't update them ?

You might see lots of red errors come up on screen. Parts of the addon might not work. If you're really unlucky you might get disconnected. I've never heard of anything destructive from an addon erroring. Either you update it to work , find a replacement or simply disable it.

Ok so if nothing's wrong on my UI do I need to update ?

No.

I know I'm going to get flamed for this statement but here it is

"Assuming your UI is not broken AND NOT spewing up red errors then you can afford not to update for a while" .

Sounds a bit heretical right ? . I've been using an email update strategy for updating my addons since December 2008. And you know what ? There's been stretches of 2 weeks at a time where I have not downloaded a single update. And my UI has been just fine.

So what are all these updates to addons I see ? Surely I need to download those updates ! There could be new features and optimisations !

Here's where you have to distinguish for yourself if it's a MAJOR update or a MINOR update.

A Major update is where the other has done a considerable amount of rework on the addon. He might of gone through every line of code making code optimisations. He might of fixed some show stopping bugs. He might of changed how his addon works in order to work better with another addon. It's up to you what you judge as a major update. A bug that's effecting your timing of your steady shot and you play a hunter ? Yeah that's major. A bug that's effecting the incoming heal on a tank and you raid on a warlock ? Possibly minor.

A minor update meanwhile is one that is either a few lines of code changed or doesn't effect you in some way. If you only play in English then any and all localisation changes can be crossed off the list to update. A "tagging" change usaully means the author has decleared that the builds he wrote before definately work with the latest patch so he's tagging it as a particular version to bring the release version on all sites in line with the development version. A new feature that you're never going to use ? Minor! . A bug fix for a class you don't play ? Minor !

It's really up to you what you judge as Major or Minor.

The Minor updates I don't even bother downloading. This doesn't not effect the running of my addons or the state of my UI. The major ones I do. Like my signature says. 89 addons. Updated every week or so. 22-25 emails. Looking at 8-9 addon pages. Downloading 3-4 addon updates. Takes less than 15 minutes.

How do I know what's changed so I can judge whats a major change or what's a minor change ?

Version histories. My email updates have these. For the ones I don't I end up opening the page. It's on Curse under the "Changes" tab (below where you click to download) and on Wow interface under the "Change Log" tab at the top.

You don't have to be a brain buzz to judge if you should download a version of a mod or not. If it interests you then download. If it sounds minor to you , don't

What's a good way of updating your addons without a addon updater client ?

1) fins metasite that takes RSS feeds the addon sites provides and formats them

http://fin.instinct.org/wowmods/

2) Make favourites of all your addons on the major addon sites. Most of them will have a page you can go to that lists just your updated favourites

3) Extension of number 2 , make favourites but this time set it up so you can emails about the addons. Examine each to judge wether it is major or minor.

Finally

I don't work for Curse or Wowinterface . Since adopting my current way of updating my addons (email updates details in my sig) I've actually spent less time updating my addons.

I don't open up an addon updater program before I login every day. They may be updates but I would prefer to have control over what gets downloaded and installed rather then just blindy installing something and hoping for the best.

I don't have a problem with people who use addon updater programs just people who feel the need to use them every single day , download every single update and associate updating manually with pulling teeth.

No offense intended to the fine people who are currently writing addon updater clients for Curse or WI but at the end of the day I'm not going to use them as they don't suit my needs
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05-10-09, 01:16 AM   #2
Cairenn
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Updating your addons doesn't have to be time consuming or difficult at all. It's actually very easy. I've posted this elsewhere, but I'll copy it here too:

On WoWInterface (I don't know about Curse, but I'm sure it's something similar, same with wowui.incgamers), when you go to the download page of an AddOn you use and like, you can click on the little heart underneath the big download button. That adds it to your favourites list. Now every time you visit the site, you will see a notice on the front page (Community tab) saying whether any of your favourites have been updated. As well, there is a link on the top bar of the site that says "favourites", that you can click at any time to go look at your list.

To get email notifications of updates of your favourites, do this:

If you are on your Favourites list page you will see a little menu on the left, or if you are on any other page on the site (except the forums tab) you can click on "Options" on the top bar. Either one of those places you will see:

AddOn Options
Manage Favorites
Email Feeds
Preferences
Download History

Click on "Preferences". You will then see this:

Download Preferences
My Favorites Options
Email Notification:
Enable this feature to recive email notification when one of your favorites has been updated.
yes no

Just check "yes" and any time any AddOn on your favourites list is updated, it will send out an email notification that it has been updated and give you a direct link to the download page for that AddOn.

Also, there is always the option of getting an RSS feed of your Favourites list as well / instead of.
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Last edited by Cairenn : 05-10-09 at 02:10 AM.
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05-10-09, 02:03 AM   #3
Zyonin
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The third component of a solid update method: Fin's AddOn meta-site has its own RSS feed. This feed gathers the RSS feeds from WoWInterface, WoWUI.Incgamers, and Curse (including CurseForge and WoWAce) into one handy feed.

Links from Fin's RSS feed will take directly to that AddOn's page on their chosen UI site. From there you can view the AddOn's full description, read the Change Log and download the AddOn.

This feed can be incorporated into your Live Bookmarks (Firefox), Favorites (IE 7 & 8, send to your Favorites Bar for best results), or the Feeds menu (Opera 9 & 10). Now that you have added the RSS feed to your browser, you have an easy to use view of all new and updated AddOns from the three major AddOn sites directly from your browser.

When you combine the RSS feeds into your browser, Honem's email update method and the Favorites feature of both Curse and WoWInterface (not sure on WoWUI), you have an extremely powerful, easy to use updater just in your browser. No extra software needed!

Fin's RSS feed integrated into Firefox's Live Bookmarks:


Sure you don't have your "Easy" button to hit for mindless updates, however you do get control over what and how your mods get updated. You will know what is going on at all times, there is nothing arcane, no "funny business" in the background, no worries that your updater will get broken. In addition, using this three part method means that you will always have backups of your AddOns. I have had updates cause my UI to throw chunks. Thus having a backup means I can quickly revert to a working version and then I can get on with the night's raiding, ganking, grinding, or Battleground action.

One other thing: Patch Days. There is an easy way to avoid the Patch Day chaos without resorting to a "One touch updater". Typically, major Patch Days are announced a few days in advance. Usually if one pays attention to the PTR notes, you will get a good idea if and when a Patch is about to drop. Most AddOn authors do pay attention to the PTR notes and Blue posts. Authors who pay attention to the Blues and PTR notes will then release either finished new versions or at the very least, stable betas of AddOns that will work with the new Patch. Thus, you the user, can use the Pre-Patch "calm before the storm" to locate and download updates for your AddOns. Just remember that not all AddOns will need an update to work with a new Patch. I have been using some of Tekkub's mods unchanged for two or three years now. All I have to do to get them to work is tick the "Enable Out of Date AddOns" check box.

The three part system of Email, RSS feeds, and Favorites will greatly help in locating these updates. Download the updates, stash em in a folder and then come Patch Day, unzip and drop your updated AddOns into your AddOns folder. By using this method, you will save your favorite's AddOns site's bandwidth come Patch Day and yourself a few headaches. This method is like using a Pre-Paid toll transponder at the tollbooth. By using that transponder, you can drive past all the drivers who have to stop and throw money into the bin because they did not pay ahead of time.
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Last edited by Zyonin : 05-23-09 at 04:18 AM.
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05-10-09, 03:26 AM   #4
Psychophan7
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I roll with 88 addons. I haven't had to update any of them in the past two weeks, and that was just for SellFish. A few of the addons have had new versions uploaded, but the old versions I have still work, so I do not feel the need to update them. Should they stop working, I'll know where to find the updates because I have all of them favorited.

The exception to lack of updates is Pitbull 4, an alpha. If I come across a bug or problem, then I'll only be hindering development by posting a bug report based off an outdated version.
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05-10-09, 06:31 AM   #5
tattooedpierre
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I like the premise of the OP's thinking; but the reality is that some addons just seem to break more easily than others. I have some addons that have been running perfectly for months and I'm very much of the thinking 'if it aint broke dont fix it'.. so they've not been updated for ages and wont be until they break or the mods have some shiny new feature I want.

On the other hand, of those mods I use some seem to be updated all the time with bug fixes and optimisations etc. QuestHelper is an example, Dr/Mr Damage as well. These kind of mods I'd really want to be bang up-to-date though, so in those cases I'd use the addon updater to keep them in check.
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05-10-09, 07:26 AM   #6
Bluspacecow
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Originally Posted by tattooedpierre View Post
I like the premise of the OP's thinking; but the reality is that some addons just seem to break more easily than others.
Do they break in unusable ways ?
Or are they broken as in a little bit inaccurate ?

Originally Posted by tattooedpierre View Post
On the other hand, of those mods I use some seem to be updated all the time with bug fixes and optimisations etc. QuestHelper is an example, Dr/Mr Damage as well. These kind of mods I'd really want to be bang up-to-date though, so in those cases I'd use the addon updater to keep them in check.
I'm afraid I don't follow your logic.

If an addon is broken then of course you're going to update it. That's a given. So you update them.

But with these mods that get updated all the time with bug fixes and optimisations ? What are the consequences of not updating ? And of those "bug fixes" which ones are actually effecting you ?

What I'm trying to get it at here is it's possible for a bug fix and/or optimisation to never effect you as a player. For example :

Mobspells r56 "Fix deleting mobs"

I don't use that part of Mobspells. So I didn't download that update.

You don't have to download every single version that an author comes out with. Examine the change log then make an informed decision. But you should always consider "is it working fine for me or not"

I really don't like Blindly installing new versions of things without knowing what changes they are going to bring. Is this new version going to change something in the addon fundamentally ? Well if so I'ld like to know what that is.

IMHO doing this "examine the change log" thing should be fairly simple to do with an updater client - Both the Curse client and the wow interface client have an option for looking at it.

I guess with all this rambling I'm just trying to convince you that you don't need to update every single day
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05-10-09, 07:31 AM   #7
mister shady
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Not only do I take advantage of the WoWI favorites feature, but I go a couple steps further. Firefox saves all of my add-ons to my desktop where I conveniently have a short-cut to my add-ons folder. After I have downloaded all of the updated versions I use WinRAR to extract them. This is as easy as going down the list alphabetically (that's how WinRAR sorts them) and drag/drop them into the add-ons folder.

To make the process even easier, I have WoW Interface set as my homepage. For add-ons not found on WoWI, well I think there's only one and that's CT Mod which is most likely getting replaced by something hosted on WoWI. Ever since I started using Bartender and Carbonite, I find the only thing I need from CT is the buff mod.

I use 30-35 mods and even on a day when all or nearly all of them have been updated, it only takes me 1-2 minutes to complete the entire process.

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05-10-09, 07:31 AM   #8
Bluspacecow
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Originally Posted by tattooedpierre View Post
On the other hand, of those mods I use some seem to be updated all the time with bug fixes and optimisations etc. QuestHelper is an example, Dr/Mr Damage as well. These kind of mods I'd really want to be bang up-to-date though, so in those cases I'd use the addon updater to keep them in check.
Not a personal dig but ....

I challenge you to not update your addons every day but once per week. Go for a week without updating your addons and report back with what your experience is like

The consequences I can see ?

Questhelper - It might have the wrong locations for stuff. Easily solved with alt-tabbing to Wowhead

Dr/Mr Damage - Those show how much your spells hit for on the icon for the spell right. Ok then the numbers it shows on the toolbar might be a bit out.

Deadly Boss mods - they're past the major bugs stage and are currently working on minor bugs.

Go on ! Take my challenge (you're allowed to limit it to 4 days not updating if you're scared )
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tuba_man on Apple test labs : "I imagine a brushed-aluminum room with a floor made of keyboards, each one plugged into a different test box somewhere. Someone is tasked with tossing a box full of cats (all wearing turtlenecks) into this room. If none of the systems catch fire within 30 minutes, testing is complete. Someone else must remove the cats. All have iPods." (http://community.livejournal.com/tec...t/2018070.html)
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WoWInterface » AddOns, Compilations, Macros » AddOn Help/Support » Why do you need to update your addons ?

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