Archive for the ‘Crafting Automisation and Panda’ Category

Logitech Keyboards and Mass Milling / Disenchanting with the Use of Panda

March 1, 2010 1 comment

A while ago, I wrote an article about gaming keyboards and mice and how they can help improve you as a player. The biggest advantage of either of these “tools” to most gamers are the large amount of programmable keys. This means that running out of available (or comfortable) keys to bind various skills to is a thing of the past. It makes us better players in that we’re more equipped to handle any situation and we can do so speedily. (If you run out of keys and have to begin resorting to “clicking” those skills you don’t use as often, your reaction speed will equate to that of a snail).

In the article on the keyboards, I specifically mentioned a quality of the Logitech keyboards that can be quite invaluable to some gamers. The G-Keys are macro-able which opens up certain possibilities to crafters.

For anyone out there with Inscription or Enchanting, a familiar annoyance will be the time you can spend disenchanting or milling herbs. Friends will frequently mail them to you as they need the materials for their own purposes. What they frequently don’t realise is, that unlike crafting, you can’t set the game up to automate these processes. There is no disenchant all or mill all options with the default UI. There are no addons that will do this for you either.

It is possible, via other means, to mass mill or mass disenchant. These means require the use of third party software however and are strictly against Blizzard’s EULA for World of Warcraft.

Through the use of the G Keys featured on the newer Logitech gaming keyboards (the G11 onwards I believe) and an addon running in game, you can create mass mill or mass disenchant macros for World of Warcraft. There is a downside, in game macros will only keep running while you are tabbed into the game. Due to this, the macros need to be left alone to run whilst you don’t need your PC for anything else. Does it beat staring at a screen and clicking through stacks of herbs or green items? Oh yes!

What follows is a guide on exactly how to set this up. It’s going to be image heavy as it features a walk through of all the stages in setting up the macros.

Mass Milling or Mass Dis-Enchanting the “Legal” Way

First things first, you need to grab an addon called Panda. I have no idea if there are other addons out there that can be used to the same ends. I suspect there are but I have always used Panda and since it has served it’s purpose with no problems, I’ve never bothered looking for alternatives.

This guide will demonstrate how to set up a mass milling macro. I don’t have an enchanter in game so sadly, I can’t provide the same screenshot walk throughs that I can for milling. The concepts are identical however.

Setting up the In Game Macros

Typing /panda in game will open the addon’s main window.

Above you can see a screenshot of the Milling section of the addon. As you can see, there is a mass milling option designed to be used as part of simple in game macros. The next step is creating this macro.

Open the macro window in game and click to create a new macro. The macro command you need (as per the Panda window) is:-

  • Click MassMill

You need to bind this macro to key via the addon you use to create key binds. For Bartender users, this is /bartender

Obviously, be sure to use a key that you don’t need for anything else and that won’t hinder your game play. In it’s simplest form you now have one key that you can hit to mill all the herbs in your inventory. If you don’t mind taking the time to do that, then this might be sufficient for you.

Setting up the Logitech G-Series Key Profiler

The Logitech keyboards come with their own software enabling you to configure the G-Keys and the LCD profiles. Under each gaming profile you create for your keyboard, you have three sets of G-Key setups available. These are named M1, M2 and M3 by default. These correspond to the “M” buttons residing at the top of the keyboard which allow you to alter your G-Keys during game play. Simply put, it’s much like using the shift key to give you additional key bind options on a normal keyboard. I’d recommend putting your mass mill or mass disenchant macro onto a set of keys you don’t use frequently. Firstly, using your main set reduces your potential key binds by one. Secondly, you don’t want to start hitting crafting macro keys in the middle of a raid 😉

Once you’ve opened the software, simply left clicking on the button you want to assign your macro to will bring up the menu seen in the picture above. Scroll down and select Macro Manager.

This will open a new window aptly named, Macro Manager. You need to create a new macro by clicking on the button in the bottom left of the screen (see below). Be sure to name your macro so you don’t forget what it is at a later date.

For the purposes of this guide, I’ve named my macro “test” as you can see below

The next stage of creating your macro is telling the software what keystrokes it needs to be mimicking in game. Press the “Start Recording” button and then simply hit the key that your Mass Mill or Mass Disenchant in game macro is bound to. In this case, it’s F6. Once you have done this, hit “Stop Recording” and you’ll have a window that looks like this:-

Close the macro manager and revert back to the Logitech G-Series Key Profiler window. The key you originally chose will now display the name of your macro. Click on the key again to open the drop down window of options and scroll down to “Repeat Options”. By default, this will be set to none, change it to “Toggle”. (See below)

The “Toggle” option causes the macro to begin running when you first hit your key bind and continue repeating until you hit it again. This effectively allows you to go AFK and leave the macro running.

In game, hitting the g-key you have bound your macro to will now mill or disenchant everything it can in your inventory

Things to Note

There are a few things to note while using this macro. Firstly, you need enough bag space to account for all the materials you can receive back from what you’re milling or disenchanting. For this reason, I’d general recommend doing batches that yield the same material types.

Secondly, for the enchanters, be sure you’re not carrying spare gear or offspec gear sets, the macro will simply disenchant anything it can.

Thirdly, as I mentioned initially, tabbing out will stop your macro from running. Remember this is only set up in game. However, in the ten minutes it takes you to go AFK and make a coffee or some lunch, you can return to an inventory stocked with crafting materials.

You need to turn auto-loot on under the game’s interface.

Chatting or doing anything else in game will interrupt your macro and you’ll need to hit the key again to restart it.