I was with my guild in Ulduar lastnight and I came to a very big conclusion....any raid can be epically won when researched right! Because we explained and shared the sites and ideas on how to effectively down bosses, we managed to take out Flame, Razorscale, XT, the Furnace, Kologarn and Auriaya on the first attempts! This is significant because we have been gaining and loosing members since we are slightly newly formed and still getting used to each other and how we handle things. This goes to show that if you research and explain properly, it can be done! I'd like to share with you my research places in hopes that you will then be well prepared.
First off, you'll need this if you want to raid:
Ventrillo or Teamspeak (w/e your guild uses)
DBM: Deadly Boss Mods (To help with encounters)
Damage Meter: To ensure you're not over agro-ing if you're DPS
Window Mode: I know most people prefer full screen, but window helps a lot
Class Knowledge: PLEASE research your class and what the REQs are to enter a raid
TankSpot: This is generally for tanks, but it explains the encounters in detail through videos for those of you who learn better through example.
BossKillers: For those of you who learn better through text and reading there's BossKillers. This site explains each encounter, proper raid mechanics, Boss HP, abilities, and setups. It offers diagrams to show how to engage bosses even through their multiple phases.
WoWHero: This explains your standing and guild standing in WoW. It also explains what you should be focusing on gear wise.
WoWWiki: The best source for all things WoW. It's a quick spot to pick up any knowledge you might want or need.
WoWHead: Look up gear, recipes, weapons, anything on this site. If you're not sure what boss drops what, this is where you need to be.
YouTube: When in doubt, YouTube! There's bound to be at least a dozen or more strat videos on boss fights and raid mechanics (and the Tankspot people are there as well!).
So I say to you, potential future raider, know your fights, know your class, make a shopping list of gear you need, and pump yourself up to the ultimate player! You're guild counts on you as much as you count on it!