World of Logs Log Browser meet Player. Player, meet Log Browser

Protip: You can scroll to the bottom of this post (and click on the “Read the rest…” link if viewing from the main page) for an example WITH PICTURES using Eternal Flame and Holy Power.

Megaera’s stupid Diffusion has been keeping me up at night. (Which, I suppose, isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It does means there’s nothing more pressing in my life to ruin my sleep.) But, as a kid, when something bothered me, I was always encouraged to write about it. (With nice handwriting and proper spelling and grammar.) So write about it, I shall. Some day.

It occurred to me first, that I’ve never really written about World of Log’s Log Browser. Since my ripping my hair out probably isn’t the best scenario to cover the basics on (and narrowing in on one mechanic from one fight makes it hard to keep the post up to date), I figured I’d do a little formal introduction to World of Logs’ Log Browser.

Finding the Log Browser.

Finding the Log Browser.

The Log Browser: Why Would I Use It?

The Log Browser is a search tool for the Combat Log.

See, (if it’s still mystery to you,) how World of Logs works is that someone in your raid is saving their Combat Log to a document-type file on their computer. They then upload that file into World of Logs. World of Logs reads it and translates it into those meters, tables and graphs that we love so much.

But! Should you need information that isn’t provided by those meters, graphs and tables, the original Combat Log is still available on World of Logs, through, *drumroll*…. The Log Browser!

Generally I’ll use it for:

Timestamps: When was a spell cast, when did someone take damage, how often does an event occur in an encounter, etc.
Dispels: Who dispelled who, what and when. (Also applies to Interrupts)
Spell Behaviour: If I’m studying a spell and want to know what it did each time instead of the average provided by the spell breakdown page.

And…I’m sure there are other uses, but those are the ones that come to mind. Timestamps tend to be the bulk of my Log Browser usage – it’s the best way to find those extra details about a fight that the basic strat guides don’t tell you.

As for how to get started, use it as you would the “Damage Done“, “Damage Taken“, “Healing Done“, etc. features. Pick a fight (or a boss). In the image above, I’ve got a Heroic Megaera fight selected because blogging has forced my WoW life to now revolve around Heroic Mageara. Then select “Log Browser” from the correct drop down box.

The Log Browser: Think of it as a fancy Google search bar

The Log Browser was probably the last WoL feature I started using because I found it rather intimidating. (I still don’t use the Expression Editor…every time I think “oh the Expression Editor might be useful to answer this question!”, I’m quickly and brutally reminded that I have no basic understanding at all of the language spoken by that Editor.)

Once you get familiar with it, though, using the Log Browser is as easy as Googling yourself.

Your first view of the Log Browser.

Your first view of the Log Browser. I did not censor anything. Please do not stalk my guildies.

The first thing you want to do, before anything, anything at all, is hit “Remove” where is says “Queries Show all events (remove, copy)“.

Reason for that being, until you remove this “Show everything” command, the Browser will constantly just show you everything, ignoring anything you ask of it. This will make you cry (or at least, very, very sad). I have much experience.

As for those buttons along the bottom, here’s a quick translation of what they mean, in Google terms:

1- “Add Query” means “Search bar will pop up”
2- “Run” means “Google Search”, or “Enter”
3- “Copy Query set” and “Paste” are, well, copy and paste options that you’ll find useful if you expect to redo the same search in the future.

So after removing the “Show Everything“, hit “Add Query” to get the action started.

Next step is don’t panic! The form looks a lot worse than it really is.

Using the “Add Query” Form

It looks all tough but it isn't.

It looks all tough but it isn’t.

1- Event Type: This is to either widen your search (example: search for all Summons), or narrow it (example: search through a mage’s casts and only show misses). You can check as many or as few boxes as you want, depending on what you’re looking for.

2- Actor: You would put a character’s name (either a player or an NPC) here if you want to search through all the lines of the Combat Log where that character is mentioned, regardless of whether they were on the casting or the receiving end (example: if I want to look at all heals I cast as well as all heals that were cast on me, I would put my name in the “Actor” field). You’ll probably leave this field blank most of the time.

3- Source: This is where you’d put the name of the character doing the thing you’re interested in (example: if we were to look at all the heals I cast, we would put my name in the “Source” field).

4- Target: You’d put the name of the character on the receiving end of the event you want to study (example: if we want to see all the times I took a fireball to the face, we’d type in my name in the target field)

5- Spell: Enter the name of the spell you want to observe. The field seems to be case-sensitive so you have to type them exactly as they’d be written in your Combat Log (or Wowhead) (example: if we’re interested in Light of Dawn, we’d type in “Light of Dawn” with L and D capitalized).

6- Spell ID: If you aren’t having luck with a spell name (it happens sometimes), you can use the spell ID number. You can find that number on Wowhead in that spell’s URL (example: for Diffusion, use Spell ID 139993).

You can enter more than one name in each field, as long as you separate them with a comma and no space (example: if I wanted to look at Holy Shock and Eternal Flame, in the spell field I’d write “Holy Shock,Eternal Flame).

You can also leave fields empty if they won’t help you narrow your search to the data you want.

Log Browser: The Limits

The Log Browser is awesome, but there are a few limits to what it can do. (The gaps in the Log Browser functions are probably filled by the Expression Editor, but the Expression Editor is beyond my humble abilities.)

– It can only show a certain number of lines, starting at the beginning of a fight/time selection. So unless you’re looking for something that happened very early on, you have to be specific in your searches.
– You can’t automatically search for specific Timestamps. There is no way to see all and only the events that happened between 1min30 and 1min36.
– The Timestamps don’t line up exactly with the times shown in the graphs elsewhere in your parses. The graphs are more like approximations, so expect some discrepancies when comparing log timestamps to graphs.

You can, however, somewhat bypass the first two limits by going to a graph page (Damage Done, Healing Done, etc), selecting a period of the fight you’re interested, right clicking on the highlighted zone and hitting “Set page to selection”. From then on, WoL (including the Log Browser) will look at that selection instead of the whole fight. (Huuuuuge thanks to Kurn for teaching me that. I owe you one!)

And the rest is just practice and creativity!

For visual types (like me), there’s a fun (by my standards) example after the cut.

A Search Example: Fun with Flames

Eternal Flame is fun to play with because it’s a relatively complex spell and the Combat Logs records it accordingly. So let’s goof around in the Log Browser with some Eternal Flame.

Let’s start by looking at me casting Eternal Flame


Which issues the following result.


Shit, that’s a lot of lines. Some useless info too. Let’s pretend we’re only interested in numbers and want to get rid of “Rykga casts Eternal Flame on friend“.

Also, if you’re wondering about Combat Log semantics:

– Green numbers mean healing (damage is red)
– (O:number) means overhealing
– *number* means a crit

To show only Eternal Flame Heals


And the resulting…um…results.


Now with slightly less lines.

Sadly, you can’t (to my knowledge) separate the initial Eternal Flame hit from the period heals because the game has them under the same spell ID. So no matter what, when playing with Eternal Flame, you’re always going to have a lot of lines.

Let’s narrow it down some more, though, and only look at me healing a specific target with Eternal Flame.

Looking at my Eternal Flame on Theck


Which triggers the following.


I added little orange arrows at the initial Eternal Flame ticks, for your viewing pleasure. And if you look closely, you can see that I’m a bad healer and poor Theck went 3 minutes and 13 seconds without my Eternal Flame ticking. (I think it was the nature of that specific fight and our assignments.)

Let’s add a little twist. Let’s look at how much Holy Power I was using to cast Eternal Flame.

Attempt to observe Holy Power


Holy Power is considered a Power Gain, so I checked the “Power Gain” box. Mana return is also considered a Power Gain.

Here’s what we get.


Ha! Fail!

That’s because Holy Power isn’t a spell. There’s no way to track Holy Power specifically. However, we can track Holy Power stacks given by spells, notably Holy Shock, Holy Radiance and Divine Light (and Flash of Light, but I didn’t it that fight). So let’s try that.

Another attempt to observe Holy Power


I couldn’t get the whole Spell field to show up on the picture, but it reads “Holy Shock,Holy Radiance,Divine Light

And the results!



Now let’s combine these with my Eternal Flame casts. I could re-use my “Eternal Flame on Theck” query, but it wouldn’t tell me much as I’ve been using my Holy Power on others as well. So let’s go further back and use a query for all my Eternal Flame casts. (I’ll add Light of Dawn too as I did sink my Holy Power into Light of Dawn a few times for that particular fight.)


Spell field reads “Eternal Flame,Light of Dawn

And the final tally!


It’s beautiful, is it not?

You find the number of Holy Powers used the old fashion way, by counting how many had accumulated since the last sink.

The line limit in the browser doesn’t let us see Holy Power sinks for the whole fight (for this parse, I could see the first 6 minutes of the 8 minute fight), but you can tell early on that for me, at that time, a ~30k Eternal Flame meant 1 Holy Power and ~60k Eternal Flame meant 2 Holy Power. We can’t see a 3 Holy Power on this image, but one would guess that a 3 Holy Power Eternal Flame would be ~90k (it is, but you’ll have to take my word for it).

And there you have it, the secrets of the Log Browser, revealed!

Now go! Have fun with creative searches to discover hidden sides of your favorite boss fights!

Explore posts in the same categories: Paladinning Info, Teh paladin, World of Logs

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10 Comments on “World of Logs Log Browser meet Player. Player, meet Log Browser”

  1. I really enjoyed using the Log Browser to see what heals landed during Tsulong’s super-heal buff period, which was accomplished simply be doing two searches – Heals by me, and Sun Breath + myself as target as the second search. Really helped me figure out how efficiently I was using that short buff! (Sometimes the info was depressing…)

    You can get rid of the Eternal Flame periodic ticks (or only see those) if you add criteria for healing > a certain number (10k or so? 15k?) I don’t know if you can do this in the Log Browser itself, though – might have to export your search into the Expression Editor.

    • Ophelie Says:

      You’d have to use the Expression Editor…. You sound like you speak its language. Your turn to write a guide! ❤

      • Hmm, maybe! I do prefer to use the Log Browser (so user-friendly!) but sometimes I want to more precisely dig for certain details, so I find myself muddling with the Expression Editor. I never remember the exact language though…I have a blog post draft cheatsheet saved with all the proper formatting and useful examples pre-written to help, haha.

        Honestly, what I use the Browser for the most though is finding out who got hit by certain mechanics (like Double Swipe), or someone’s stacks of a certain debuff/DoT/etc. Takes only a few seconds, and gives you the bad news in very easy-to-read, pull-separated windows. So amazingly handy!

        • Ophelie Says:

          For debuff stacks, I’ll look at that player’s “Buffs gained” graph (more visual!), but if you need to look up everyone, it does make more sense to use the Log Browser.

          These days, I mostly use it if I need to understand a specific mechanic, or confirm spell behaviour before publishing a blog post. In the past, I did use it a lot for the getting hit by mechanics feature, as well as to see how often a boss would use a certain ability.

          I use it to get a more specific look at damage patterns too when preparing a fight. I think I have a post about that somewhere *goes digging* Ah! Here!

  2. Nzall Says:

    the Expression editor is basically a direct query on the underlying data, with you providing the where statement you want. for example, suppose I want to see who got too many stacks of the shadow damage debuff on Sha of Fear, let’s say more than 5 stacks:

    (spellId=119086 and amount> 1) and targetType = “Player”

    the Expression editor is not that hard to learn. You can start small, for example by searching for who got periodic Eternal Flame ticks, by setting “fulltype” to 302.

    • Nzall Says:

      Also, noone expects you to know everything in the expression editor by heart. there’s a glossary for a reason.

    • Ophelie Says:

      I’m sure it’s not rocket science. I’m just missing the very basics when it comes to syntax. Think of it as trying to learn algebra without ever having seen basic arithmetic.

      Looking at your post, I get these questions:
      – What do the parenthesis mean and how do I know where to put them?
      – Do I start direct with the search code you used or do I have to put a “=” in front of it?
      – Would I type “(spellId=119086 and amount> 1) and targetType = “Player” “, or would the two phrases be on separate line?
      – Why is “targetType” necessary? Isn’t the Sha Debuff always on a player?
      – Where would I put the “fulltype” and the 302? (what do fulltype and 302 mean? Are they just code for “heal” and “periodic”?) Would it be “(spellId=whateverEFis) and targetType = “Player” and fullType=”302” “?

      If I looked hard enough, I could probably find a few search examples floating around. By lining them up and comparing them, I could easily figure out the syntax and learn the language (linguistics is a hobby of mine and this is just another linguistics exercise ^_^). I’ve just not come across any examples on my own (last time I checked, the ones in the official WoL were only code words, with no syntax examples, but that may have changed) and I haven’t had the need to really dig through the internet.

      • Nzall Says:

        answering your questions:

        1) parenthesis are used to mark linked statements where one statement is dependant on the other. in this case, you first want to see if the spell has more than 1 stack (check if the spell with ID X has Y stacks), and afterwards if it’s cast on a player. If parenthesis aren’t there, this wouldn’t work, because it wouldn’t know which spell to check.
        2) you don’t need to add any symbols in front.
        3) it doesn’t really matter for the result, but often it’s best to place statements which need to be examined together on the same line.
        4) I adapted that code from an example where they had to put that check. but in this case, if the sha debuff also were to apply to a pet (like a water elemental standing next to a mage), this filters it out.
        5) in this case, you put down:

        spell=”Eternal Flame” and fullType=SPELL_PERIODIC_HEAL and targetType=”Player”

        you can also use spell names. 302 was just shorthand for the combatlog code for periodic heals. finally, targetType makes sure any accidental pet heals are excluded. Parentheses aren’t needed, because no statements (key=”value”) are dependant on another.

        if you want to add Holy Shock heals to it as well, you do it like this:

        (spell=”Eternal Flame” and fullType=302)
        (spell=”Holy Shock” and fullType=301)

        in this case, I want all eternal flames where the fullType shorthand is 302 (i.e. periodic heals) and all holy shocks where the fullType = 301 (i.e. direct heals), but both of which only cast on players.

        If you’ve ever written select queries on a database or in Access for a computer sciences class, this is basically the same. I know that not everyone has had the chance to work with such statements in their school though, but they allow you to make nearly any query which you can define in a definitive way.

        as an aside, I believe the Log browser is a basic UI to call some predefined methods in the expression editor. if you press the copy button from the log browser, you can copy the querystring the log browser gives and try and adapt it in the expression editor.

        • Ophelie Says:

          If I’d ever written select queries on a database or in Access for a computer sciences class, I wouldn’t be so daunted at the prospect of using the Expression Editor! I’m sorta old and didn’t study hard sciences in uni, so the only time in my life I’ve ever had access to anything that remotely resembled a computer course was in high school. We covered the proper order of turning on the screen and computer as well as using right click to copy and paste (we didn’t even get as far as ctrl+c and ctrl+v. I suspect that was too much for the poor old man who was forced to give the course.). Any knowledge of computers beyond that is self taught. And I guess the need to learn query languages never just arose.

          I appreciate the pointers! They should be enough to get me started. I had actually been wondering if I could just copy the code from the Log Browser into the Expression Editor and use it as a starting point. I’ll play around with it and see what happens!

          Thank you!

          • Calidyn Says:

            There’s an import function in the Expression Editor that lets you input the code from the log browser and will let you see it in its expression editor version, but it doesn’t always generate the expressions in the most intuitive manner.

            Playing around with the Query Builder in the Expression Editor that actually uses the EE language should be more helpful, I think, in getting a sense for how the grammar and syntax work and the scope of the language. And then you just have to master the brackets, which it doesn’t do very well (or at all, really).

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