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Addon Spotlight: Addons 101

Sean Forsgren

For those of us who use dozens of addons, it becomes far too easy to take the basics of using them for granted. I'd like to take a few moments to go over how to begin using addons.

To begin, you addon newbs may be wondering how to go about finding good, reputable addons. Our own Addon Spotlight feature here at WoW Insider is a great place to start your search. We've reviewed many popular addons, and our readers have chimed in with lots of great advice and feedback about addons. You can also ask fellow gamers, or better yet, your guild. Some guilds require certain addons for members, but regardless of your own guild's policies, your guild-mates may have some good addon advice. There are a few primary sites you can visit to find addons, each of them doing essentially the same thing in different formats.
These three sites are the major hubs for addons and UI packages. Different people swear by different sites, so choose one that appeals to you. As far as I am aware, you can consider these to be fairly safe from viruses and the like. Although I cannot guarantee or endorse the actual safety of any files from any website. (Got to keep the lawyers at bay.) These sites all employ some sort of rating system, which can give you a general idea of how other players rate different addons. Another characteristic to note is how often an addon is updated, as active developers tend to release better software.

Another way to find addons is to search for them by name using a search engine like Google. Many developers keep the most current version of their addons on a native site. Examples are Auctioneer, CTMod, Cosmos UI and Healbot Continued. For you Ace advocates, I should mention the Ace addon system, which many players choose because Ace addons play well with each other and used shared libraries to minimize memory use.

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