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Eliah Hecht

Lurking inside your World of Warcraft folder is a folder called WTF. While this has often prompted me and, I'm sure, others to exclaim "WTF indeed," I have recently learned that it stands for Warcraft Text File, instead of a more colorful alternative. Oh well. Inside the WTF folder, you will find the humble, a plain text file that contains many saved settings from WoW. Specifically, it stores most of your interface preferences, like graphics, audio, camera, and such.

And if you wanted to, you could open the document up in WordPad/TextEdit (depending on OS; apparently NotePad is not good to open in), and change the preferences therein, and they would apply to your game. It's pretty simple. For instance, the line for the profanity filter reads SET profanityFilter "0" in my, since I have it turned off. If you wanted to turn it on, you'd change the 0 to a 1, and it would read SET profanityFilter "1"; save the file, and your profanity filter is now turned on next time you run WoW. Note that you may not have a line for all possible options if they're at default values.

Mucking with isn't something you'd normally want to do, because it's much easier to just change your prefs from the in-game option boxes, but there are a few you might want/need to edit in the WTF file. If you mess up your, by the way, you can just delete it, and WoW will recreate a new one with default options next time you run it. You'll lose your interface preferences, but those aren't very hard to re-set.

  • realmName: This is, of course, the name of the realm WoW will try to log in to. I find that changing this in the WTF is often faster than going to the realm selection screen, and it was very helpful when my realm was down in the sense that trying to connect to it would eventually time out, without letting me choose a different realm (this was a while ago).
  • targetNearestDistance: I actually never noticed this before today. This sets the maximum limit for tab-targeting, in (I think) yards. The default is 45; increase it if you want your tab targeting to go farther (or decrease it if you want it to go less far I guess).
  • There are three settings with "Faster" in their name, which tweak the way the game draws certain things on screen. Two of them (M2Faster and GLFaster) are Mac-only. The defaults usually work well, but if you're having performance issues, you may want to try adjusting them. Tigerclaw from the Mac Tech Support forums explains what they all mean:

    They are all independent.

    M2Faster changes the way our 3D model drawing engine approaches the task of drawing the scene, basically drawing objects in a more optimized order. It is cross platform in nature. Useful values are 0 and 1, I think 1 is now default.

    UIFaster changes the way our UI drawing engine gets all the icons, buttons, panels, and other UI elements drawn on screen. It also re-orders and combines drawing tasks to make them occur faster on the GPU. This is a cross platform setting. The useful settings are 0,1,2,3 - 3 is default.

    GLFaster controls the Multi-Threaded OpenGL option on the Mac client. 0 turns it off, 1 turns it on with a mild frame rate cap to prevent mouse lag, and 2 lets it run at peak speed (though some mouse lage can occur, and prior to 10.4.9 crashes could also occur). So for this option, 1 is the default. It only has effect on Intel Macs running 10.4.8 or higher.
    When this option is working at peak efficiency, we can max out two processor cores and raise frame rates up to 2X over when it is turned off, though this ratio is very scene dependent. Scenes where the GPU is the major limiting factor (open land views with lots of trees, full screen glow effect, lots of particles on screen) don't see that much of a boost. Stated more simply, it lets a larger number of possible scenes be drawn at the GPU speed limit than were possible before.

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