Soggy Cupcakes by Kevin Rohrbaugh

Sync WoW Plugins and Settings for Free

I have an on-again, off-again relationship with World of Warcraft, often returning to play through new expansions and then wandering off after a few months.

Like many WoW players, I use a lot of add-ons, all but replacing the default UI. I tend to play on my main gaming PC, as well as my Mac laptop (often from my couch). Keeping add-ons up-to-date across both machines is a hassle, which is why Curse offers a subscription service for syncing them. Unfortunately, I'm too cheap to pay for it.

Instead, I use Dropbox's desktop client to accomplish the same thing for free. Here's how to do it (using Terminal on Mac or admin-mode Command Prompt on PC):

  1. Setup Dropbox to sync a local folder (sign up for a free account)
  2. On your primary computer, which has your up-to-date add-ons and settings, move your settings and add-ons folders to a World of Warcraft folder inside your synced Dropbox folder

    #
    # Mac
    #
    mkdir -p ~/Dropbox/World\ of\ Warcraft/WTF
    cd /Applications/World\ of\ Warcraft
    mv WTF/Account ~/Dropbox/World\ of\ Warcraft/WTF/Account
    mv Interface ~/Dropbox/World\ of\ Warcraft/Interface
    
    ::
    :: PC
    ::
    cmd /x
    mkdir "%HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\World of Warcraft\WTF"
    %SYSTEMDRIVE%
    cd "%PROGRAMFILES(X86)%\World of Warcraft"
    robocopy WTF\Account "%HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\World of Warcraft\WTF\Account" /move /s
    robocopy Interface "%HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\World of Warcraft\Interface" /move /s
    
  3. Create a symbolic link from your WoW folder to the Dropbox folder

    #
    # Mac
    #
    cd ~/Dropbox/World\ of\ Warcraft
    ln -s WTF/Account /Applications/World\ of\ Warcraft/WTF/Account
    ln -s Interface /Applications/World\ of\ Warcraft/Interface
    
    ::
    :: PC
    ::
    %SYSTEMDRIVE%
    cd "%PROGRAMFILES(X86)%/World of Warcraft"
    mklink /D WTF/Account "%HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\World of Warcraft\WTF\Account"
    mklink /D Interface "%HOMEDRIVE%%HOMEPATH%\Dropbox\World of Warcraft\Interface"
    

At this point, you've moved your WoW settings and add-ons to your Dropbox folder, so that it can begin syncing the data to the cloud. You've also created symbolic links so that WoW still believes those directories are where it expects them to be.

All that's left is making similar links from Dropbox to the WoW application directory on your secondary machine. This is done by installing Dropbox on that machine, allowing it to sync your files, and then creating links as outlined in step 3 above.

Note that many settings (stored in WTF/Account) are display-resolution dependent, so you may not want to actually link your entire settings directory.