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Posts with tag client

What's the difference between a 32- and 64-bit client?

One of the most frequently asked questions around here these days is what exactly the difference is between a 32- and 64-bit client of World of Warcraft. Blizzard, which has been hinting at a 64-bit WoW client for some time now, has finally announced that such a client exists and can be downloaded for testing on the PTR. This is great news for people with computers that have large amounts of RAM and hefty processors, as well as great news for general improvements to WoW's structure itself.

In order to use a 64-bit client of WoW, you need to have a 64-bit operating system on your computer. The main difference between 32- and 64-bit operating systems (usually Windows) is that one deals with information in a more efficient way. Information in a 32-bit operating system is dealt with in pieces of information that are 32 bits wide, while 64-bit operating systems deal with information that is 64 bits wide -- double the alternative. With this larger bit structure comes better efficiency and the ability to use or "see" more RAM in your computer. 32-bit systems can only use 4 gigabytes of RAM and your 32-bit WoW client can only use 2 gigabytes, whereas the amount a 64-bit system can use is almost unlimited.

While we don't fully know exactly what improvements to the game will come with the 64-bit client, we can assume that more efficient processing power and the ability to stack more RAM for WoW to use might give some players a big frame rate boost and better performance. Lifehacker has an old article about how to tell if you have a 32- or 64-bit operation system.

Filed under: News items

Link to the launcher text

Just a quick tip for those of who may be stranded at work and thinking about World of Warcraft (which, during the day, is probably all of you?) I've never seen a link to this page (though we've snuck it in some maintenance posts before), but fortunately the good folks at the WoW LJ community have spotlighted it: Blizzard's welcome screen notice is just a text page online, and it's publicly available. So even if you can't load up the WoW client, you can still keep track of realm downtime on maintenance days, or just keep an eye on what Blizzard is posting about lately.

It's a little thing (and truthfully, there's probably not much there that you really need to know anyway -- if you're away from a WoW client, obviously you can't log in even if your realm is back up). But you never know, someday when you're thinking about World of Warcraft, far afield of your installation, and really need to know what Blizzard has to tell you, it could come in handy. Definitely earned a place in my bookmarks, just in case.

And having it in quick and easy online text form means we can script it to go elsewhere, right? Anyone want to try hooking a Twitter account up to this thing?

Filed under: Tips, Realm Status, Odds and ends, Blizzard

Video teases iPhone WoW client

I can honestly say that I would love to have WoW available on the go, for things ranging from checking my mail to browsing the auction house to leveling a death knight on long car trips. The iPhone seems like a great platform for something like that -- a pared-down but fully-functional WoW client.

And now we might be a little closer to that becoming a reality. Our sister site, Massively, just picked up a hot tip from Youtube, where someone has posted a video of a rumored Vollee port of World of Warcraft for the iPhone.

And it looks pretty darn cool, fake or not.

We've got the video and impressions after the jump.

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Filed under: News items, Rumors

Common updating problems and tips for fixing them

It's patch day, of course, and people are having plenty of troubles with upgrading their clients to the latest 3.1 version. But worry not -- most of the issues we're seeing, while relatively widespread, should be fixed by the time the realms come back online. Here's a few tips to help you get through the time of trouble.

Help! My patch isn't downloading? It's stuck at 68%/73%/xx%!
It probably is downloading -- be patient and let it run. Blizzard uses a Bittorrent-based system to distribute the game's patches through the official client, and those systems depend not just on Blizzard and their ability to distribute the patch, but also how much of the patch all of your peers have. If everyone around you has xx%, that's all you'll get for now. But an hour from now, someone will have spread the full patch around, and then you'll pick it up no problem. Patience is a virtue, and until the realms come back up, you can't play anyway.

Also, the patcher will stop showing progress around 70% or so -- at that point it'll start installing the patch, and you'll need to click another button to see installation progress. But if you just let it run, it'll update.

What does "The tracker is not responding" mean?
Another Bittorrent issue that should resolve itself after a little while. The patch will need some time to disseminate, and if you get a message like this, it just means your client hasn't found all of the connections that it can. It will.

I get a weird "Unable to Validate Game Version" message when I log in. Is my client broken?
No. Blizzard's servers aren't all upgraded yet (hence the reason we can't play). When they are all upgraded, your client's version will match the server's, and everything will be hunky dory.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Hardware

How to uninstall the PTR client

A minor but important point: do not run the uninstaller to remove the Public Test Realm (PTR) client, just delete the PTR folder. Most people can find the PTR client inside the "WoWTest" folder, which resides in the "World of Warcraft" folder. More specifically, you should be able to locate the WoW Test folder in "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft" or "C:\Program Files (x86)\World of Warcraft\". If you have MacOS X the "WoWTest" folder is stored in "Macintosh HD::Applications::World of Warcraft".

Other people can find the PTR client inside of the folder "C:\Users\Public\Games\World of Warcraft Public Test" in Windows Vista and "C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft Public Test" in WindowsXP. MacOS X users can find the files in "MacintoshHD::Applications::World of Warcraft Public Test".

This important bit of information came from blue poster Maaven on the official forums today. With Patch 3.0.2 being released tomorrow, the PTR client is useless and came be safely removed. But be sure that you remove it the way Maaven suggests.

WoW Insider will have a lot of 3.0.2 coverage tomorrow. We'll also be keeping the light on tonight and will get you the patch notes as soon as they appear.

Filed under: Patches, News items

Mashing buttons can cause cooldown problems

Ever since patch 2.3, a number of players have been having a lot of trouble with their instant abilities, especially in PvP. They're finding they get constant "spell is not ready yet" and "target is out of range" errors whenever they mash their buttons. The main source of this problem has to do with a change to the way your computer communicates to the server what your character is doing. It's not very easy to explain, but I'll do my best here. First, I'll explain how the change affects longer spell casts, and then afterward look at how it affects instants.

Here's how things worked in patch 2.2:
  1. I press a button to cast a spell or activate an ability.
  2. My computer says, "Hey! Realm server! David wants to cast Frostbolt!"
  3. The realm server says "Okay!" 300 milliseconds or so later (this round-trip communication time is your "latency").
  4. My computer then starts a 1.5 second global cooldown, and shows me the Frostbolt casting bar.
  5. I cannot use any other abilities from the time I press the button to the time my Frostbalt casting finishes, unless I manually cancel the spell (as with a /stopcasting macro), or unless the server tells my computer, "Okay the spell is finished already!" or "Whoops! That spell got interrupted!"
  6. Either way, without a manual interruption on my part, I'm waiting on the server to tell me the outcome of the first spell before I can tell it to start casting the second.
Here's how things work in patch 2.3:
  1. I press a button to cast a spell or activate an ability.
  2. My computer says, "Hey! Realm server! David wants to cast Frostbolt!"
  3. My computer goes ahead and starts the global cooldown for me, assuming the Frostbolt will succeed.
  4. The realm says "Okay!" 300ms later, and the casting bar shows up.
  5. Alternately, if there's a problem, then the realm says "No way, silly! David isn't finished casting Fireball yet! Wait a moment to try again, and cancel that global cooldown while you're at it!"
  6. Either way, I can send my commands to the server whenever I want, as long as my global cooldown isn't currently active -- and if it gets activated too early, I just have to wait for the server to tell my computer to cancel it before casting another ability.
Sounds fine, right? Before, we had to wait for latency between our computers and the realms in order for any spell to go through, but now we just have to wait if we press a button too early.

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Filed under: Rogue, Patches, Odds and ends, PvP

Don't mash in 2.3!

Your character can be less effective if you mash buttons in 2.3, according to Altitis. You can also stop using the /stopcasting command in most macros.

In the 2.3 PTR patch notes, "client spell cast requests are now sent to the server even if your player is already casting another spell. This eliminates the need for /stopcasting in macros to compensate for latency."

What this means in English is that outside of global cooldown, your computer will try to send a new cast command to the server when you press a button, no matter what.

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Filed under: Patches, Odds and ends, Add-Ons

How to increase your camera distance


It seems to me like we've covered this before, but I can't find it, so it must have been a while. The standard camera distance in World of Warcraft isn't bad, especially if your computer is right at the system requirements-- you can usually see most of what's happening and yet it's close enough to keep you focused on your character.

But if you've got a really nice PC and, like me, want to see a little farther than normal (or as in the picture above, a lot farther than normal), there are a few easy ways to increase your camera distance, as Dr. Laxative found over on LJ.

ImprovedCamera is probably the easiest-- it's an addon that will give you a slider to increase camera distance up to the max allowed range. You can also see, in the description on that site, that there are ways to edit your WoW files and increase the max range even farther. By editing the "SET cameraDistanceD" number in your config.wtf file, you can change one of the preset lengths for the camera, and then cycle through them with Home and End. You don't even really need an addon to tweak your settings-- type "/script SetCVar("cameraDistanceMax",30)" (or whatever distance you want) into the chat console, and then you should be able to scroll out to the max distance that you just set.

If your computer's not that great, doing this stuff will definitely introduce slowdown and pop-in to your graphics, so run these commands with care. But if you've got the gear for it, you can see Azeroth at a whole new distance.

Filed under: Tricks, How-tos, Odds and ends, Add-Ons

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