This post was published long before the Mists of Pandara Expansion.
The tips and techniques explained here may be outdated.

At a glance

Here’s what my raid frames (Grid) tells me at a glance (image is about 2x nomal size. click to see the full screenshot):
Glance

That which grid does by default:
– The boxes are colored by class. So at a glance I know there are 3 hunters.. and I wonder why there’s only two hunter pets up. (Kupl is Lilac the warlock’s phase shifted imp)(all the other warlocks are succy-sac warlocks.. so no pet for them) (If the 3rd hunter pet was dead it should show as dead at the bottom.)
– The first row is group 1, the second row is group 2, etc. It’s easy to say Lilac is in group 3 (Lila in Column1, row 3). Omar is in group 4. You -can- group the hunter pets with the groups in grid.. but I don’t like the way that display looks.
– Falt, Niho and Lilg have aggro (Red dot, upper left-hand corner) Since Lilg is a mage I bet it’s a bad thing that he has aggro. Since the tanks targeting skull (Joeb and Mich) -don’t- have aggro I’d guess that skull is currently chasing Lilg. Which now that I look deeper, is a really good guess. On the full screenshot Lilac (ME) is targeting Skull (right of grid). Skull is targeting Lilgnome. Though.. since Joebelcher has top aggro on omen (left-hand side) it’s probable that the skull is spitting poison at Lilgnome.
– Thed is hurt for about 2.7 health. If I were healing I’d probably throw him a little heal (1.5k)
– There are a couple of other people who are slightly hurt.. but it falls below my threshold. They might benefit from a tiny heal.. but probably, unless they have aggro, they’re fine as they are. (ie, Lilac has a tiny sliver taken out of her health.. she probably is just suffering a bit from the poison. Not worrisome at the moment).
– Urd (who looks to have an ORA compliant addon) is doing a group heal on his group, group 5 (The +2.5 showing on everyone in group 5 and the green dot in the lower left-hand corner) (Though it looks like Urd is the only one who is damaged. Someone else may have thrown a heal on the group just before this screen shot)

Things I setup:
– Falt, Jeob, Mich and Vodk all have thorns on. (green dot, top middle)(Add Aura: Thorns)
– All the warlocks have Fel Armor up (purple dot, left-hand-side) (Add Aura: Fel Armor)
– Niho has Righteous Fury up (purple dot, left-hand side)(Add Aura: Righteous Fury)
– There are three pets for the party. Kupl is Lilac’s(my) imp. He’s phase shifted (and altered to look out-of-range). Raks and Tyge are hunter pets. Tyge is targeting skull and Raks is hurt for about 2.3k. I don’t think mend pets show… I’ve never figured out if I wanted to add them.
– Falt is targeting the Orange Circle (orange dot, bottom right-hand corner)(GridStatusRaidIcons)
– Niho is targeing the Purple Diamond (purple dot, bottom right-hand corner)(GridStatusRaidIcons)
– Alot of other people are targeting the Skull (Grey dot, bottom right-hand corner)(GridStatusRaidIcons)
– It’s not shown here.. but on my healer, out-of-range toons show as more transparent. That way I don’t keep trying to throw heals on them.
– You -can- configure Grid to show you other people’s mana bars. I haven’t found much use in that. Instead, if someone is low on mana (below 20%) Grid shows a pale blue dot on the bottom side. If I were tanking and needed to confirm healer mana before a pull I might configure it to show more detail.

The thing I’ve found about grid.. is the more you use it.. the more uses you find for it.

Downloads I recommend:
Grid: http://files.wowace.com/Grid/Grid.zip
GridAlert: http://files.wowace.com/GridAlert/GridAlert.zip
GridIndicatorSideInidicators: http://files.wowace.com/GridSideIndicators/GridSideIndicators.zip
GridStatusRaidIcons: http://files.wowace.com/GridStatusRaidIcons/GridStatusRaidIcons.zip

Also nice-to-have:
Clique. See full Grid+Clique post.

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