Regional FlagTroubleshooting your UI - Step By StepSource
Target Source
#0 - 2007/06/18 05:34:14 PM
I’ve become aware of the relatively high amount of new posts in which people humbly ask for help troubleshooting their UI and the problems occurring. Most of the times people haven’t even tried to do any troubleshooting, which is a shame, because the steps needed to find the culprit are often very easy. So I came up with this idea that we could gather some of those steps in one thread, so beginners would have an easier time pointing out the problems on their own. That way they might get a much more detailed description of their problems if they still can’t figure them out, or they might even completely solve them.

Step 1: When does the problem occur?
The very first step is to determine when the problem occurs. Is it absolutely random, or does it happen when using spells/abilities, while typing in the chat channels, browsing the Auction House, sending mail, etc.? Sometimes it’s difficult to find out exactly what triggers the problem, but before feverishly answering “random” to this question, try to provoke/force the problem by doing what you did last time the problem occurred. Try to think about which of the following might be involved:

* Unit frames (health/mana/name/level bars/text of player, pet, target, party, raid, etc.)
* Action bars (bars of buttons on which you place your spells/abilities)
* Chat frames (edit box [the box you use to type in], combat log, chat channels, etc.)
* Minimap (the map/radar that shows nearby party/raid members [and different types of players/pets/monsters for some classes])
* World map (this includes instances, battlegrounds and Azeroth/Outland)

Step 2: Disable all addons.
The next step is to find out whether or not the problem is actually addon-related. Finding the culprit is often easiest using a process of elimination, so the first thing you want to do is disable all addons from the character selection screen. Not having any addons loaded will (obviously) cause the game to load in its “default” state (note that to completely reset all settings, you must delete the folder named WTF in your World of Warcraft game folder).

NOTE: If the problem is addon-related, it will most likely not occur before entering the actual game environment (when the addons are loaded), so if your problem has something to do with simply starting the game executable or anything like that, it will most likely have something to do with either your computer (hardware, drivers, etc.) or corrupt/broken files in the game folder.

If the problem persists, it is most likely not related to any of your installed addons. However, just to be on the safe side go to your World of Warcraft game folder and copy the folders named WTF and Interface to somewhere else or simply rename them (something like BACKUP_WTF, BACKUP_Interface will do just fine). As you might already know, the Interface folder contains all your addons, which means if it doesn’t exist (renaming is the same as deleting, because the game looks for “Interface” and not “BACKUP_Interface”) it will load no addons for sure. The WTF folder contains all addon-related settings as well as keybindings and audio and video settings. Basically, deleting/renaming the WTF folder means that everything you have “saved” to the game thus far will be reset to its original state. Simply copying the folder back in or renaming it back to WTF will fix this, so there is no need to worry. If the problem is now solved, you might have to rebuild your whole UI.

Step 3: Enable addons one by one.
If the problem disappears when simply disabling all your addons, you will know that the problem is indeed related to one of your addons. Using the list from step 1, you will be able to quickly eliminate (or rather point out) the culprit. What you want to do now is enable all addons one by one until the problem starts to pop up again. If the problem has something to do with your unit frames, the first addon to enable will of course be the addon that has the most influence on your unit frames. For instance, if you are using Pitbull and your target frame doesn’t show, enabling Pitbull as the only addon would be your first step.

One by one you should enable the addons that have something to do with the problem at hand. If the problem is completely unknown, just start from the top and go down the list (you might want to warn your friends of the incoming “has come online/gone offline” spam). When you finally manage to trigger the problem again, you will have found the culprit (or one of them). Sometimes addons don’t work well with each other, which means the addon you found to be the culprit might not be the only bad guy around the bunch. As a step 3b, you could try to disable other addons and have only the “bad guy” addon running on its own to see if the problem is related to only that one addon or if it is a conflict between addons.

Alternative (and less time consuming) way of finding the addon causing trouble:
Binary search (submitted by Kaso): First enable the top half of your addon list, if you have the error then you know the problem is one of that half's worth of addons, if you do not have the error, you know the problem is the lower half's worth of addons. Next you take whichever half you know the problem is in and divide that in half again, and repeat the process until you just have 1 addon left, which you know is the one with the error.

Step 4: Research.
When you have found your troublemaker addon, what you want to do is find out all you can about it. This might involve digging into the LUA, but most of the time taking a look at its slash-commands or if you got your addon from a site that has comments, take a look through the comments and see if someone has already had the same problem as you, and if he/she has found a solution.

If the problem doesn’t involve any types of actual errors or interruptions (like the missing target frame with Pitbull from the example), the problem itself has probably been triggered by an accidental slash-command or mouseclick by you. This means that you should be able to find the problem by digging through the settings of the addon (with the many options Pitbull serves, stuff resembling “Enable Target Frame” can be difficult to spot if you’re rushing it).

Step 5: Browse/search the forums.
Like with anything else, if you have a problem you simply can’t figure out how to solve yourself, consult your fellow players. But don’t go make a forum post right away, first search or browse the forums for answers, because chances are someone has already had the same problem, and if luck is on your side, you might find your solution right there in that other guy’s post, so you save time making a brand new topic. Not only does this save you time, but it saves those who wish to help you time as well, because solving problems that have already been solved before is redundant.

Step 6: When all else fails...
If you can’t solve the problem yourself, if you can’t find the solution anywhere in the forums or elsewhere, whack that “New Topic” button and tell us about your problem. Remember, the more detailed your description is, the easier it will be to help you out. It also shows the rest of the community that you have indeed tried to solve it yourself, but without any luck.

I hope this thread can be useful to some of the beginners as well as the experienced members of the community, and feel free to leave comments, corrections and/or suggestions or anything along those lines.

Blue Poster
Target Source
#7 - 2007/07/27 09:27:54 AM
This was linked in the UI Sticky compilation: