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Want to preload Cataclysm without pre-ordering? Here's how

NOTE: Blizzard has approved use of this method. It is not against the ToS, EULA, or any other acronym.

Pre-orders for the Cataclysm digital upgrade
are officially open, and you can start downloading the remainder of the expansion's data the moment your purchase goes through. But what if you're awaiting a Collector's Edition or you don't have the money to upgrade online right now? You don't want to be left waiting for Cataclysm to download and install on launch night.

Thankfully, we've got you covered. There's an easy way to preload all the data you'll need to play Cataclysm the moment it goes live on midnight Dec. 7. Just follow these easy steps:
  1. Make sure World of Warcraft and/or the launcher and background downloader are completely closed.
  2. Open up your World of Warcraft folder.
  3. Open Launcher.wtf in Notepad and change the "accountType" line from LK to CT.
  4. Open Config.wtf in Notepad and change the "accountType" line from LK to CT.
Now load up the launcher and you should begin downloading 700 megs or so of new material. That's the last bit of data you need to play on launch night. Enjoy!

Remember: This will only give you the necessary files to play Cataclysm. It will not upgrade your account and you will not be able to access Cataclysm features. You still need to buy the game if you want to play on launch day.

Thanks to Lemon King for the tip!
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it; nothing will be the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion (available Dec. 7, 2010), from brand new races to revamped quests and zones. Visit our Cataclysm news category for the most recent posts having to do with the Cataclysm expansion.

This article was originally published on WoW Insider.