Tag Archives: vuhdo

Jasyla’s Resto Druid UI

It’s been a while since I’ve done a UI post and it’s been updated a fair bit over the last year or so.

A good UI is an important aspect of raiding, especially for healers. Having all the information I need on-screen and placing somewhere easily visible (but without causing unnecessary clutter) helps a lot with my awareness and reaction times.

I need to make sure my UI tells me everything I need to know. As a resto druid and healing lead, here are the important things:

  • The health levels of the whole raid
  • The mana levels of the raid
  • Who has a debuff that I can get rid of
  • Who has a debuff that needs to be healed through
  • When my abilities are off cooldown
  • Who my HoTs are ticking on and for how long
  • Who has aggro
  • Who is out of range
  • When a boss is casting or using a special ability
  • The status of everyone’s healing/mitigation cooldowns
  • When other healers are using certain abilities

To me, determining the things that are not important and can be cleared from my screen is almost as important as determining the things that are important. Things like trade skills, mounts, spells I never use in raids, and holiday items do not need to be visible on my screen. I don’t even use healing/threat meters in my UI because I feel like they take up too much space (and I’d rather look at healing in World of Logs anyway).

Here’s what my UI looks like while in a raid (though I usually have my achievement tracking turned off).

Resto Druid PVE raid UI

And one while in combat:

Resto Druid PVE raid UI in combat

Here are the addons I use:

Action Bars

Dominos bar addon
Dominos is my main bar mod. With it I can arrange my action bars as I like. One of my favourite things about this addon is the ‘faded opacity’ settings. With this I can keep abilities that aren’t used much in combat (mounts, bags, menu buttons, and in my case dps abilities) on my bars but have them invisible until I mouse over them. In the above screenshot all the bars outlined in red are normally hidden.

GreenRange turns buttons red when abilities are out of range.

OmniCC cooldown counter addon

OmniCC adds numerical countdowns to abilities that are on cooldown so you can tell exactly when they’ll be ready for use again.


X-Perl unit frame addon

X-Perl is what I use for my self, target, target-of-target, focus and pet (if applicable) frames. I also use the X-Perl cast bar.

VuhDo raid frames

VuhDo is what I use for healing. I made the switch to it from Clique a few years ago and now I can’t imagine using anything else. I use VuhDo to keep track of everything I need to know about the raid (health, mana, debuffs, my HoTs) and I do all my healing through VuhDo’s built-in mouse bindings.

Tidy Plates addon

Tidy Plates are tidy (duh) and customizable name plates. I use the Grey/Damage theme.

Combat Text and Notifications

Deadly Boss Mods

Deadly Boss Mods is what I use for raiding. I keep the boss timers off to the side of my screen and then they move front and center when an ability is about to happen.

Mik's Scrolling Battle Text

Mik Scrolling Battle Text makes it easier to see combat information like your healing done and incoming damage and heals. I used to use the font MS Porky’s just to drive people crazy, but I just changed it to match my X-Perl and VuhDo font.


oRA3 is a raid assisting addon. I mainly use it to track raid healing and mitigation cooldowns.

Restoration Druid Power Auras
Power Auras Classic
gives big, visual (and sometimes audio as well) reminders. I use this to track when spells are available for use and my Harmony uptime. I previously wrote a post on my power auras.

Raeli’s Spell Announcer (not shown) announces when I use certain spells in whichever chat channel I choose. I like for all my healers to use this mod so we can all see when a cooldown is being used in healer chat.

Fatality (not shown) announces the last damage a person took before they died. Usually the raid leader uses this, but I make sure to turn mine on if she’s not in the raid. I feel lost without knowing immediately what killed someone (and if I could have prevented it).

Other Nifty Things


SexyMap sexifies my minimap. It makes it look all leafy and druid-like and hide all buttons until I mouse over the map.

Prat 3.0 (not pictured) is what I use for my chat frame. The main thing I use it for is to move the text input box so there’s no longer a gap between the frame and the bottom of my screen.

My VuhDo Spell Bindings (also works with Clique!)

If you were to ask me what my most essential mod for raid healing was, I would say VuhDo, hands down (6 months ago the answer would have been Grid + Clique). Besides providing an awesome set of compact raid frames that shows me everything I need to know, VuhDo includes spell click-cast bindings that you can set up however you want.

A little while ago Beruthiel wrote a post sharing her bindings which I though was a fantastic idea, so now I’m going to share mine.

Why Click-Cast?

I’ve tried healing in a number of ways. When I was a noob, I used to manually click on a raid frame then click on a spell (my god, how did I keep anyone alive?), I’ve tried the method of clicking on a raid frame then pressing a keybind, but for the last 3 or 4 years I’ve been using click-casting. I’ve found this to be the fastest way to heal. You never have to worry about having the correct person targeted, just mouseover their frame, use the appropriate click+modifier and bam! they’re healed.


My mouse is Microsoft wireless laser 7000 with 5 buttons. It’s not specifically made for gaming but  it suits me just fine.

Microsoft wireless laser 5-button mouse 7000

My fiance recently bought the Cataclysm gaming mouse (that thing is HUGE, you need big bear paws to hold it – it reminds me of the original Xbox controller) so he have me his old Logitech gaming mouse. However, I’ve gotten so used to my own that it just didn’t feel right, so I continue to use mine.


Since I raid on 2 different healing classes I need a good set of binds that will cause as little confusion as possible when I switch characters. Luckily, resto druid and disc priest spells are highly congruous so I’m able to bind similar spells to the same buttons.

Bindings are made using a combination of the left and right mouse buttons (1&2) and the buttons on the side of the mouse (4&5) combined with the modifiers Shift, Control and Alt.  I use my middle mouse button as my push-to-talk key for Ventrilo.

Here are my bindings for both classes:

No modifier

Binding Druid Spell Priest Spell
Button 1 target target
Button 2
Button 4 Barkskin Prayer of Mending
Button 5 Healthstone Inner Focus

Shift modifier

Binding Druid Spell Priest Spell
Button 1 Lifebloom Power Word: Shield
Button 2 Rejuvenation Renew
Button 4 Remove Corruption Dispel Magic
Button 5 Cure Disease

Control modifier

Binding Druid Spell Priest Spell
Button 1 Wild Growth Prayer of Healing
Button 2 Regrowth Flash Heal
Button 4 Healing Touch Greater Heal
Button 5 Binding Heal

Alt modifier

Binding Druid Spell Priest Spell
Button 1 Swiftmend Penance
Button 2 Nourish Heal
Button 4 Innervate Power Infusion
Button 5 Tree of Life Leap of Faith

There are a number of abilities that I do not bind to my mouse, mostly because they are things I don’t want to hit by accident or I just don’t have enough binds for them. I keep the following abilities on a bar right beside my unit frames, so I just click on them when I need to use them:

Battle Rez

Divine Hymn
Hymn of Hope
Pain Suppression
Holy Nova
Mass Dispel
Power Word: Barrier

Healtstones, mana pots, on-use trinkets

I do not have any offensive abilities bound.

Raid Frame Showdown: Blizzard, Grid, VuhDo

Three raid frames enter. One raid frame leaves.

As a healer, my raid frames are the most important part of my user interface. If you had asked me 2 months ago what my raid frames of choice were I would have said Grid, hands down. This is both because it is an excellent addon that tells me everything I need to know but also because I’m stubborn and refused to try out any others. After patch 4.0.1 Grid hit me with some very annoying issues that caused the most important parts, the HoT timers, to stop working as I liked. This gave me a very good excuse to broaden my horizons and try out some new raid frames, namely the default Blizzard raid frames and VuhDo. Here’s my evaluation of them. For the TLDR version, skip down to the summary.

Blizzard Raid Frames

I’m going to insert a big spoiler here and tell you that the default raid frames do not win this contest. However, they underwent a major overhaul recently and I thought they deserved a proper look.

Customization and Options

Customization of the default raid frames is extremely limited. You can change the size of the frames, though even the smallest settings are still very large, you can choose to display class colours or leave everyone green, you can also choose whether or not you want to see things such as incoming heals, aggro, power bars, and debuffs.

Blizzard raid frame options
The default raid frames don’t allow for nearly as much customization as I’d like. The biggest problem for me is the size. I like to keep my raid frames as small as possible so I get a good view of the action rather than have the raid frames take up too much space on my screen. The size of the smallest setting needs to be cut in half in order to make me happy. I also prefer vertical health bars, which is not an option.


I’ve set up the Blizzard raid frames to my liking, as much as the limited options allowed. Here they are:

Blizzard raid frames

The raid frames really aren’t bad-looking. The things I like most are the incoming heals and the raid roles clearly indicated on everyone’s frame. However, there are many things I don’t like. As I mentioned already, the frames are too big. I also think the percentages are unnecessary.

Information Displayed – HoTs and Debuffs

Default raid frames - HoT displayYour own HoTs are shown in the bottom right corner of the raid frame, represented by the spell icon. There are no numerical countdowns to tell you how long the duration is but it does show time left though shading. Only three HoTs are shown at a time. There are no options to change the size or display of the icons. As you can see in the above example, with mana bars showing and the smallest setting, HoT icons cover the health percentage display.

Default raid frames - Debuff displayDebuffs are shown in the bottom left corner. There is an option to show only dispellable debuffs.

Ease of Use

Lack of options make the default raid frames very easy to set up.


I’ve been a staunch Grid supporter for almost as long as I’ve been healing. It is highly customizable and can show you everything you need to know to heal effectively.

Customization and Options

Grid can be customized in many ways.

Grid frame options
You can change the fonts, size of the notification icons, how many characters of each person’s name displayed…

Grid layout options
Size of the raid frames can be anything from teeny, tiny to very large. You can set it to expand/contract to a certain number of groups based on your circumstances.

Grid Indicator options
Triggers (HoTs, debuffs, aggro, etc.) can be set to appear in the area of your choice. You have the option to show things in the four corners, on the four sides (requires an additional mod), in the center of the frame or as a border.

Grid Options - auras

You can customize how the triggers display by changing the colour, priority or adding filters. You can add custom buffs and debuffs, or use a mod like GridStatusRaidDebuffs to add them all for you.


Grid Raid Frames
Grid has a nice, compact layout. Of course, it all depends on how you set it up, but Grid can really look any way you want it to. My favorite parts of Grid are:
1) debuffs shown as icons so I know exactly what people are affected by;
2) numerical countdowns to let me know how long my HoTs are ticking for.

Information Displayed

Grid HoT tracking
I have a separate countdown timer for each of my HoTs, displayed in different areas of the frame. This makes it very easy to tell, at a glance, which HoTs are up and how much longer they will tick for. The Lifebloom counter is colour-coded to tell me how many stacks are up.

Debuffs are shown as an icon in the middle of the frame. I do not use a generic trigger to tell me when I can dispel something (though you can), instead I learn to recognize all the icons.

Ease of Use

With many options comes much confusion. I’ve introduced a few people to Grid and they were quite overwhelmed by it at first. The menus are not very intuitive and it does take quite a bit of work in order to turn the out-of-the-box frames into something usable and informative.

For me, the biggest downside to Grid is the number of addons you need in order to get it working optimally. Search for Grid on Curse and you will get 3 pages of results. In addition to the main addon, I use extra modules in order to show: side indicators, text indicators, mana bars, HoT timers, raid debuffs. As you can imagine this makes staying up to date a bit of a pain. They are not all updated at the same time and occasionally (like after 4.0.1) this can cause problems.


No longer the new kid on the block, VuhDo has been around for a while. Those who use it swear by it, so I finally decided to test it out.

Customization and Options

VuhDo has almost every single option for customization that I could want.

VuhDo size options

Customize the scale, size and spacing of your raid frames.

VuhDo HoT options

Customize where you want your HoTs displayed on the frame (2 layout options with a total of 7 spaces for HoT icons), which HoT goes where, how big they are and how they look.

VuhDo debuff options

Decide where to display debuffs and how they look. You can set sound alerts or animations to draw extra attention to certain debuffs or set it up so the frames change colour to indicate what type of debuff is present (not pictured).

VuhDo mouse bindings

You can assign your spells to mouse keys, add keybinds and set smart casts.


VuhDo Raid frames 2
I’ve set up Vuhdo so it looks almost identical to Grid. The frames are a little brighter, and there are many different textures to choose from for the frame backgrounds. HoTs are shown with both icons and countdown timers which I really like. The only aesthetic problem I have is that there is no option to make mana bars vertical (if I’m wrong about this, please let me know).

Information Displayed

Vuhdo HoT tracking

All my HoTs are displayed in their own part of the frames. The icon for each HoT is displayed along with the countdown for how long it will tick for. This makes the frames very easy to read. Lifebloom has an extra counter to show the number of stacks.

Debuffs are shown in two ways. First, the icon is displayed in the top left corner along with a countdown timer. Second, name of the player changes colour to let me know what type of debuff they are affected by (blue for magic, purple for curse, green for poison).

VuhDo out of rangeThere is also a nifty feature that shows which direction people are, relative to you, when they are out of range to make finding them easier.

Ease of Use

As with Grid, the huge number of options makes setup a little complicated. A nice thing about VuhDo is that the option screens are clear and full of large, well-labelled, colourful buttons and tabs. When setting it up I was able to figure out most things fairly quickly, but did have to resort to Tam’s excellent guide a couple of times to figure out some of the options.

The best thing about VuhDo is that you get everything – frames, HoT timers, debuffs, mana bars, click-bindings – all in one addon.


Blizzard Raid Frames


  • Easy to use
  • Part of the standard UI – adds no extra memory usage to your game
  • Each person’s raid role is clearly displayed


  • Lack of options
  • Frames are too large
  • Can only display up to 3 HoTs
  • No numerical countdowns for HoTs

Verdict: The default raid frames have improved immensely, but they still aren’t quite there for healers who want to track everything that’s going on. Customization options are very limited. If there was an option to scale down the size of the frames further, I would use the default raid frames on dps characters, but as they are now these frames do not fulfill my healing needs.



  • Extremely customizable
  • Compact and attractive (once it’s set up correctly)
  • Extendable – there are many modules available to help you track any specialized spells or information


  • Menus are not very intuitive
  • Takes time to set up
  • Need for separate modules makes staying up to date a bit of a pain

Verdict: Grid, combined with the click-healing mod Clique, has provided me with everything I need for in a raid frame for years. There are a ton of options which let you customize the appearance and information displayed to suit your needs. The biggest downside to Grid is that you need multiple addons installed in order to have a complete raid frame package. Most modules are maintained by different developers which means they are not all updated at once and can lead to problems.



  • Extremely customizable
  • Compact and attractive (when set up properly)
  • Includes everything you need to see on your frames in one mod
  • Includes built-in click binding assignments
  • Menus are attractive and mostly straightforward


  • Takes time to set up
  • No option for vertical mana bars

Verdict: VuhDo has a ton of customization options and can be set up in almost any way you could think of. All HoT timers, debuffs and notification options are included in a single addon. With its built-in click and keybindings, it provides everything I need to stay informed and heal effectively.


In terms of aesthetics and ability to display the information I need Grid and VuhDo are neck-and-neck. Both show me everything I need to know in a compact and attractive package.

In terms of setup, both mods do take a bit of work. VuhDo has a slight advantage in this area as the option screens are cleaner and more intuitive.

The biggest difference between Grid and VuhDo is the number of mods needed to get it to work effectively. In order to set up Grid as I like I need 7 or 8 different mods, for VuhDo I just need one. Because of this, VuhDo is now my raid frame addon of choice.