Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Bandaging the JSHB Addon

JSHB was not working at all for me following the launch of 6.0.2..  I use it on my hunter and rogue. It did not show up. I could not get /jshb to do anything. Others reported that they had it working but it killed their frame rate, or that it was only partially working.

JSHB is not maintained and hasn't been for a year.  The developer or series of previous developers are no longer playing.

Here's how to fix it.

  1. Backup your Interface folder so you don't get crazed if this doesn't work. ;-)
  2. Stop wow.
  3. Download the latest Release edition of Ace3.
  4. Unzip it.
  5. Open up your Interface/JSHB/lib
  6. Delete the libraries in there.
  7. Copy the new Ace3 libraries into Interface/JSHB/lib
  8. Edit the Interface/JSHB/JSHB.toc file and set "## Interface:" to 60200.
  9. Start wow and make sure the addon is enabled.
  10. Enjoy your borrowed time.
I'm looking to get a permanent replacement to JSHB.  NeedToKnow, which was updated for 6.0.2 has an experimental option to show focus. It's not where it needs to be for real use yet though.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Problem with Numbers

The sky is falling!  I really don't want to be this person.  The issue is that we, as hunters, have been on the low side in expansions before.  Blizzard eventually fixed us with various buffs here and there but those always happened after months of progressive raiding occurred.

The sky is falling!  Our numbers are low.  They're like really low.  Like holy priests can out-dps hunters.  All three specs are terrible.  We're half the damage done in simulators of warriors and mages and far far behind everyone else.

The sky is falling!  There are tons of caveats with the sims.  The most commonly circulated ones are "Patchwerk" style.  Hunters are supposed to be the dps-on-the-move class.  So, in a "Helter-Skelter" simcraft set-up, we should be much better.  Well, no.  We should be as close to the same as possible and everyone else should be worse.  50% worse?  That's hard to believe, right?

The sky is falling!  Are the sims right?  Nope!  Many sims are looking at level 90 and frankly, Blizzard doesn't care about balancing anything at level 90 anymore.  Are the sims doing the right conservation of focus for the shots, or prioritizing correctly?  I somewhat doubt it.  The simcrafters are trying to model dozens of specializations.  Even if just looking at hunters, you need to pick some heuristics and tweak focus regen and stat weights (gems, enchants, etc) around it.

The sky is falling!  But Survival just got a buff and others got buffs and nerfs.  That's great, but it isn't great in that it was enough of a buff/nerf.  It's great that Blizzard is tweaking as well.

The sky is falling! Here's the thing the simulators have an easier time and a harder time.  It's easier because there are less stat weighting to consider.  It's easier because there are less abilities to prioritize.  It's harder because there hasn't been enough thought and experimentation by creative people into what should be done.  All that said, on the surface and at first cut, hunters are in the dps basement.

The sky is falling!  For now, just enjoy your time.  Try the new UBRS.  Get your stuff in order. Prepare to level.  Try out MM, BM, and SV.  Try and get some muscle memory going with rotations. Get your addons so you can more easily visualize what you need to watch.  Try raiding if you raid. If Blizzard is watching they'll see the numbers and continue to tweak.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Get Your Ghost Boar

I have a large collection of Ghostly pets.  The Ghost Boar with Armor Barding will most likely going away with WoD.  He's a tame that maybe you shouldn't be able to tame.  Blizzard has patched tames like this in the past.  For instance, you can no longer tame the Boar on Fire with Armor Barding.  The Slime or Three-headed Ghost Hydra.  The summoned Spore. The Ghost Wolf.  The list goes on.  You'll want to grab this and it's fairly simple.

First head to the bottom of the Southern Barrens.  Because of the disruption to the world, you'll want to then head west.  Pass over Razorfen Downs.  You want to go farther west to Razorfen Kraul.  It is to the west of the road.

Side Note: Traveling to that part of the world is easy for horde with two main cities to choose from.  Alliance engineers can use their portal tool to get to Gadgetzan.  Or they can ask a mage to port them to the obliterated city of Theramore.  Otherwise a boat trip to Dustwallow Marsh or Ratchet will have to do.

Once you're in the instance, you should remove your weapon, legendary cloak (if you have one), and any AoE proc trinkets.  You can punch the mobs to death, or just run through them and FD.
You'll make your way, bending right, and then walking up a little crevase (passing the boss you want to get to on your left).  Make a hard left and you'll see him in a little hut.  I punched out everyone on my way there.  Don't get punch-crazy and nuke the boss too.  
Get your tame button ready.  Then walk over to the boss to engage him.  Don't hit him.  Stand around and wait for him to cast a summoning spell for your new pet.  Once it's arrived, tame it.  It may die afterwards.  That's okay.  Just rez him and he'll still be ghostly.


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Aspect of the Fox

Aspect of the Fox:

  • Aspect of the Fox is a new ability for all Hunters.
    • Aspect of the Fox: Party and raid members within 40 yards take on the aspects of a fox, allowing them to move while casting all spells for 6 seconds. Only one Aspect can be active at a time. 3 minute cooldown.

This certainly wasn't on my list of aspect ideas that accomplish getting hunters a raid cooldown.

When I'm on my restoration shaman, I find very little use for Spiritwalker's Grace.  It's a 2min cooldown and lasts 15 seconds and lets me toss a bunch of greaters while moving.  I really should use it more.  There are plenty of places where I should be moving and healing.  But the shaman isn't my main and the training I've instilled is to NOT move while hitting some buttons which is a little difficult to overcome.

Six seconds seems really short for this kind of buff.  Not only do you have to tell everyone when you're going to start it so they don't screw up their spells, you also have to tell people when it's over so they stop moving while casting.  (Or everyone gets a visualization for this buff counting down.)  If it has a visualization for folks that indicates it wearing off then that can help.  But again six seconds is really brief for this.

The 3min cooldown makes sense.  The buff is just really difficult compared with something that is defensive or increases mana or increases haste or heals.  Those are going to be consumed as long as the person popping the cooldown does it at the right time.  This requires the cooldown to be popped at the right time by someone who doesn't normally know about those issues and it needs to be consumed by someone who doesn't have control of when it falls in their casting rotation.

If it has more applicability and useful-ness to the class using it then it will be more widely used and better used.  MM may have uses.  Tame beast may have uses.  Our new version of Sniper Training has issues on its own, but if it had synergy with it, that might be interesting.

Overall I'm very happy to see a hunter cooldown.  I'm a little confused by it.  But not lean-pack-confused.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Lightly Technical Post on Gaining Access to Lost AWS EC2 Cloud Compute Machines

Data Loss Background 

Last Sunday a friend of mine contacted me and let me know I had to move all my crap off his ancient machine he had been hosting for me.  It was a machine I had given him in the 90's... a Sun Ultra 10.  Ancient.  Unfortunately I had several websites on it and content for this site hosted on it.

I quickly made an account with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and spun up a "free" machine, got the ssh keys, and then tar-gz'd everything and copied it all down to the new EC2 instance.  Some nearly 2GB of data.  Much of which were old family photos.  All was well. I also pulled down a copy to my local desktop.  He then nuked the machine.  All was well, and I had a decent amount of work ahead to recreate some web servers to host this.

Then within four hours my desktop failed.  Hard.  Turned out to be the motherboard.  I had backed up almost all the data in two places but with one stroke I had lost everything.  I could no longer access my AWS instance because the ssh keys to enter it were on the desktop.

I will most likely buy a replacement desktop and then slot those drives and have the data, but that isn't happening this month.

Necessity being the mother of invention I figured out how to recover access to the cloud instance. It being a couple decades since I did any heavy unix sysadmin work, and not being an AWS expert, it took me a few hours to piece together.  Luckily this was pretty light stuff.  Here's how.

Gaining Access to Your EBS EC2 Instance Without the SSH Keys

1. Make a new EC2 host in the same AWS account.  Ensure it is in the same availability zone as the host with the lost keys. (When spinning up, set it in the config step under subnet.)  Make sure you use keys that you have available. ;-)

2. Stop the original EC2 host with lost keys.  Wait 'til it's stopped.  And do not accidentally TERMINATE it.

3. Go to volumes.  Note the attachment information of the new and lost-keys hosts.  Copy-paste it.

4. Detatch the EBS from the host with the lost keys.  Wait until its state changes to "available".

5. ssh in to the replacement host.sudo -u root mkdir /mnt/lost-key-volume
6. Attach the volume to the replacement host by selecting it and attaching (right click or menu pull down) to the new host id.

7. When it's attached the console will show attachment information.  Note where it is attached. e.g.-/dev/sdf

7a. Note: Newer Linux kernels may rename your devices to /dev/xvdf through /dev/xvdp internally, even when the device name entered here (and shown in the details) is /dev/sdf through /dev/sdp.

7b. If you're using ubuntu, the kernel wont necessarily attach the block device as /dev/sdf.  Type 'lsblk' to see what's up and 'df' or 'mount' to see what is already mounted.  You can also 'ls -lt /dev/' for the recent blocks mounted.  Use what lsblk gives you.  

ubuntu@ip-172-31-45-8:/dev$ lsblk
xvda    202:0    0   8G  0 disk
+-xvda1 202:1    0   8G  0 part /
xvdf    202:80   0   8G  0 disk
+-xvdf1 202:81   0   8G  0 part

7c. So in my case /dev/sdf means I want to mount /dev/xvdf1
sudo -u root mount /dev/xvdf1 /mnt/lost-key-volume

8. Now go in there and add the known pub ssh key to the authorized_keys file.  Don't change the perms of anything in the .ssh directory.  If you're feeling adventurous, you can do something like cd'ng into the mounted FS, nav to the ubuntu/.ssh and run:'cat ~/.ssh/authorized_keys >> authorized_keys'

9. Verify the
authorized_keys looks good, or you'll have to repeat a lot of work!

Unmount it cleanly 'sudo -u root umount -d /dev/xvdf1'

11. Detatch it using the console.

12. Attach it to the original host and the original device block. In my case, my original device was /dev/sda1 If you don't have right dev point your instance will not boot.  

13. Once it's attached, boot your original host. Note: for whatever reason (maybe just because I was typing out steps and this was #13) my original host didn't start the first time around. I decided to stop the temporary host I used to mount the EBS. Then I was able to start it up.  There might be something fishy in the EBS Volumes manager.

14. ssh in using the keys you have and put in to the authorized_keys file and enjoy access to your old host!

That shows how reasonably easy it is to move EBS around from host to host.  It also shows that you should have two factor authentication (2FA) on your AWS Web Console login because ssh only gets you so far.

I'll get the title fixed when I get around to setting up a webserver.