Boss Notes

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Boss Notes Panel

About Boss Notes

Boss Notes provides shareable notes and other information for your guild, party and raid community. The add-on lets you take notes from your boss encounter learnings and share this information with other players. You can also use Boss Notes as a general, structured in-game notepad. In addition, Boss Notes records trash and boss abilities as well as boss emotes and provides a collection of short encounter tactics. With the powerful Rules module, you can extend your existing boss mod with additional encounter rules for custom notifications, timers, raid target icons and yells.

Boss Notes is based on a modular design. The standard distribution contains the Personal Notes, Abilities, Emotes, Tactics and Rules modules. Extension modules can provide additonal functionality.


If you have a Lightweight Data Broker (LDB) container add-on such as Titan Panel, Boss Notes shows in that container. Left-clicking the Boss Notes icon toggles the Boss Notes window; right-clicking the icon shows the options.

If you do not have an LDB container, type /bn toggle to show the Boss Notes window and /bn options to show the options.

Boss Notes provides a key binding to toggle the Boss Notes window. You may want to assign a key to that binding to gain quick access to Boss Notes.


The Boss Notes window lets you choose between the generic category and specific instances and encounters. The window then displays the information available on the selected category. Boss Notes automatically switches the category when a known mob is mouseovered or targeted in a dungeon or raid.

Boss Notes Window

The Boss Notes tooltip provides quick access to the currently selected information.

Boss Notes Tooltip

All information can be sent to various types of chats.

Send To


Boss Notes functionality is provided by modules. The following sections describe the modules that are part of the Boss Notes standard distribution.

Personal Notes

The Personal Notes module provides shareable notes. Notes are by default shared with other players in your guild, party or raid. Other players can browse your notes and you can browse theirs. Sharing happens transparently in the background. If you want to limit the distribution of your notes, you can disable sharing for the guild, party or raid in the addon options under Syndication.

To edit a personal note, left-click on the content area in the lower half of the Boss Notes window. This opens the editor. The editor supports in-game links by shift-clicking. This allows you to link to items, abilities, tradeskills and other information in your notes.

Personal Notes Editor

For each category, there is a public default note. You can right-click a note to bring up a context menu that allows you to add to remove additional notes. Additional notes can be either public or private notes. Public notes are by default shared with other players in your guild, party or raid. To ensure that Boss Notes does not cause excessive network traffic, public notes are limited to 1'000 bytes per note. Boss Notes uses smart caching to further reduce network traffic. Private notes on the other hand are not shared with other players. Therefore, they have a much higher size limitation which is currently set at 10'000 bytes per note.

Personal Notes Context Menu

Player Name Colorizing

Player names can be colorized in personal notes. This is useful for raid leaders to quickly check and update encounter setup macros. To colorize a player name, enclose it in double curly braces, i.e. {{Player}}. Players with this markup are colorized as follows:

  • Green if the player is in raid groups 1-5
  • Red if the player is in raid groups 6-8
  • Grey if the player is not in the raid


The Abilities module lists the abilities of known trash mobs and bosses (NPCs) in dungeons and raids. The module differentiates between 10 player and 25 player difficulty as well as normal and heroic difficulty. Abilities are learned automatically as they are used by the NPCs.

Please note that only the boss abilities matching the current dungeon or raid size and difficulty are displayed and that abilities are learned seperately for each difficulty.


The encounter database is still work in progress. It is fairly complete for Cataclysm and Wrath of the Lich King, and less complete for older dungeons and raids. Please consult the Encounter Database Status page for more information.


The Emotes module lists the emotes, whispers and yells of known trash mobs and bosses (NPCs) in dungeons and raids.



The Tactics module provides short tactics for dungeon and raid encounters. The tactics are maintained by DrKazza. Please contact him directly if you have feedback on the content or want to contribute.


Customizing Tactics

You can right-click on a tactics entry in order to copy its content to the clipboard. From there, you can paste it in a personal note and customize it to fit your needs.


The Rules module allows the definition of custom encounter rules for notifications, timers, raid target icons and yells. In a nutshell, it supports a roll-your-own boss mod approach to encounters which is completely in-game and does not require programming. Instead, declarative rules are used. The rules module is not intended to replace your current boss mod. Rather, it provides bridges to common boss mods that integrate your custom rules with the regular display provided by your boss mod. As the Rules module is powerful and complex, its complete description is on a separate page.


Learning Mode

Learning mode is an advanced feature that is used by the Boss Notes development team in order to maintain the encounter database that is included with Boss Notes. When playing on live, you generally do not need to use this option. Especially, you do not need to use this option for Boss Notes to learn NPC abilities.

You may want to use the learning mode when playing new content on a beta or test realm where the encounter database is not yet up to date. Use the /bn learn command after entering the zone. This causes Boss Notes to begin associating unknown NPCs with the currently selected instance and encounter while you are in the zone. Learning can be stopped by typing the same command again. Learnings can be cleared by typing /bn clear. NPCs are always learned on the currently selected instance and encounter. Please note that this selection must be adjusted manually in many cases as there is no automatic switching for learned NPCs.

Reporting Bugs

Please use the Ticket System on WowAce when reporting bugs. This ensures that your error reports receive proper and timely processing. You can log in on WowAce with your Curse Network account. Posting error reports in the comments section on is not recommended and most likely leads to the respective comment being deleted without consideration.

Extending Boss Notes

Boss Notes is based on a modular design. The add-on can be extended with additional modules. Please see the Boss Notes Provider Modules page for further information.

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  • Avatar of antagonizer1 antagonizer1 Jan 26, 2012 at 22:10 UTC - 0 likes

    <<reply 509448>>

    When I target the new boss the info on the last boss still shows up. It work fine on  the first boss encounters but at random it keep the old boss information on the next bosses.

  • Avatar of DrKazza DrKazza Jan 25, 2012 at 11:35 UTC - 0 likes

    @antagonizer1: Go

    Not sure exactly what you mean, but I have something similar... let me know if it's what you see. Bossnotes always shows the last boss you have targetted, so lets say you kill the first boss of an instance. Bossnotes will show you that boss, it's only when you target the 2nd boss that it will recognise a new encounter and show data for that.

  • Avatar of antagonizer1 antagonizer1 Jan 23, 2012 at 21:29 UTC - 0 likes

    During my encounter with bosses in doing Dungeons. I have had the app show the info for the last boss. It won't load the info for the current boss that I'm on. Some times it won's show anything on that boss. Is there a command to reload this app?  I find this a very useful tool for noobies.

  • Avatar of Genaeve Genaeve Dec 18, 2011 at 01:36 UTC - 0 likes

    For some reason the last boss for I believe ZG <god I always get those two mixed up> is not showing tactics. I receive no notification that something is awry, errors, or other buggiez. Any suggestions?

    Thank you in Advance -Gena

  • Avatar of Luckyjack_SL Luckyjack_SL Jun 07, 2011 at 23:43 UTC - 0 likes

    Simmdogg, click a boss first and then open Boss Notes. This should give you the boss's page right away (if there are tactics for him ofc).

  • Avatar of simmdogg simmdogg May 26, 2011 at 00:35 UTC - 0 likes

    I see no abilities in any of the instances. Am I missing something? Or do all fights need to be recorded first?

  • Avatar of Dornhelm Dornhelm Nov 28, 2010 at 14:09 UTC - 0 likes

    Added a ticket with a patch to fix a crash when a note is added requiring BossNotes to create a scrollframe.

  • Avatar of Gorilivan Gorilivan Aug 10, 2010 at 05:28 UTC - 0 likes

    Is there any chance to add scrolls bars to the select instance drop down menu, or make it 2-5 columns wide first one single long column that goes off the page and does not let you check some instances. I managed to make the entire frame dragable in an attempt to see all the drop down, but even pulling it down to the bottom of the screen where only a pixel or two shows to select the drop down there are still instances unable to be seen. I only know enough about lua and xml to crudely change things but a lot of it sill escapes me. I would like to see it so that the drop down actually goes down instead of up, and maybe with scroll bars or more columns to spread out the selection to all be seen at once.

  • Avatar of Bethink Bethink Aug 05, 2009 at 18:15 UTC - 0 likes

    Thanks for the report, the ticket and work around.

    1.0.5 is now out with a more complete fix of this issue. (There are now both GetDungeonDifficulty() and GetRaidDifficulty().)

  • Avatar of Wolfric83 Wolfric83 Aug 05, 2009 at 09:27 UTC - 0 likes

    For anyone currently having an error pop up with GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty() being null, Blizzard changed that function to GetDungeonDifficulty()
    I have been able to get mine working temporarily until this is updated here (i'm sure it will be very soon) by modifying one line in Abilities.lua in the BossNotes_Abilities folder:

    what was:

    function BossNotesAbilities:GetDifficulty ()
    	local rawDifficulty = GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty() 
    	return bit.lshift(1, rawDifficulty - 1)


    function BossNotesAbilities:GetDifficulty ()
    	local rawDifficulty = GetDungeonDifficulty() 
    	return bit.lshift(1, rawDifficulty - 1)
    • Change is from GetCurrentDungeonDifficulty() to GetDungeonDifficulty()
      Hope this helps and is not unwanted assistance.

    and with this change i am able to access my old bossnotes again.

    Last edited Aug 05, 2009 by Wolfric83


Date created
Feb 25, 2009
Last update
Feb 04, 2014
Development stage
  • deDE
  • enUS
  • zhCN
  • zhTW
MIT License
Recent files
  • R: for 5.4.2 Feb 04, 2014
  • A: r400 for 5.4.2 Feb 03, 2014
  • R: for 5.4.2 Feb 01, 2014
  • A: r398 for 5.4.2 Feb 01, 2014
  • A: r397 for 5.4.2 Feb 01, 2014



Embedded library