Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: ON POSTING: FORUMS and SUBJECT LINES

  1. #1
    Administrator Site Admin-
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    5,441

    ON POSTING: FORUMS and SUBJECT LINES

    It is a shame that this needs to be said, but since the "General Support" forum has been moved to the top of the list (a situation that has since been corrected), many people are looking no further and are posting things that are much better fits in other forums here. The list of all forums is here. Please think about the topic of your post and post in the proper forum. In particular, I've moved many posts in the past few weeks that deal with problems seen after a hard disk install from this forum to the Hdd Install / Debian / Apt forum.. There are many good reasons for this but the most important one for you as a poster is that it will get your question in front of the right people who can give you an answer to it. Posting a HDD install question here (for example) and not even bothering to mention that you did install the Live CD to hard disk wastes both bandwidth and people's time.

    Other Thoughts on using the forums to post your topic in the right place:
    • If you are seeing a networking problem while booting from the CD (including dial-up networking) then the problem belongs in the Networking forum.

      Questions on other live Linux CD's other than Knoppix likely belong under Other Live CDs, although there may be some cases where questions might fit well in other forums.

      Do not change the subject and post a completely different question inside of an existing thread. Start a new thread for a new topic.

      Tips and Tricks is intended for posting helpful suggestions, not for posting threads that ask questions. If you have a question to ask please do not start a new thread in that forum (obviously questions to existing threads are on-topic).

      There certainly is some overlap. Some questions might, for exmple, be on-topic in General Support, MS Windows & New to Linux, or The Lounge. But please try to select the best forum for posting a new thread, it will save a lot of people time and will help get you a correct answer quicker.

      Also, once you pick a forum, look over the existing posts (or use the Knoppix website search feature on the top of each forum page) to see if others haven't posted about the same problem that you are posting about. There is certainly no good reason why many people post the same questions every day. It is not reasonable to say that "I can't be bothered to look at the previous posts" and expect others to spend their time in giving you the same answers that you could have found yourself if you had taken a few minutes to look.

    And one more thought, although this too fits in the category of things that really should not have to be said: Please do not use subject lines like "how to?", "Please help me", "how do I" , "Need help" , "I'm a noob" , "I'm the uber-noob and you are here to server me" , or other text that givers readers and people who search through the forum looking at subjects absolutely no clue as to what the post is about. Personally, I'm going to stop giving any help to such posts, even if the answer is as simple as a link or I know a simple one line answer.

  2. #2
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT, U.S.A.
    Posts
    1,338

    Re: PLEASE POST IN THE RIGHT FORUM

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Kuhman
    It is a shame that this needs to be said, but since the "General Support" forum has been moved to the top of the list, many people are looking no further and are posting things that are much better fits in other forums here. The list of all forums is here. Please think about the topic of your post and post in the proper forum.[b]...
    Bravo!
    I agree, completely... Not for the "moderator" point-of-view, but, for the poster. You have a better chance of getting not only an answer, but, a "better" answer, if your topic is in the correct forum...

    As a side note:
    If you feel the need to "quote" someone, in a previous reply, please edit out any extra "white-space" that doesnt pertain to the needed reason for the quote... As an example... Quoting someone who posts a complete output of "dmesg", you can edit out any "extra" parts, keeping only referance markers to where the "data" you need them to look for, or, this one just came up, quoting a picture, and not only keeping the complete picture in the quote, but only adding a few lines to the post...

    If you need to post a topic, or a new thread, examine all forums before you post... General Support is just that, for a "catch-all" for those topics that dont fall into any of the other forums... Like video related issues, or not being able to boot the CD, etc...

    As Harry said, may of the topics, and forums, can overlap. This is just because of the nature of support, and computers... Not everything can be placed in a nice, neat, forum, and as an issue is being resolved, it may, cross-over to another forum...

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Kuhman
    Other Thoughts on using the forums to post your topic in the right place:

    ***** Do not change the subject and post a completely different question inside of an existing thread. Start a new thread for a new topic.
    The word for it is "piggy-backing" or "hijacking" a thread, in some cases, when the topic is still maintained, only someone else wants more information, then this isnt the same, but, when the topic starts out as "I cant boot the Knoppix CD", and half-way through the thread, someone posts an issue on "How do I setup a network card", that would not only be hijacking, but, may not get the person an answer on there issue...

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Kuhman
    ***** Also, once you pick a forum, look over the existing posts (or use the Knoppix website search feature on the top of each forum page) to see if others haven't posted about the same problem that you are posting about. There is certainly no good reason why many people post the same questions every day. It is not reasonable to say that "I can't be bothered to look at the previous posts" and expect others to spend their time in giving you the same answers that you could have found yourself if you had taken a few minutes to look.
    Chances are, in most cases, someone else has already had the same issue, and could have also got it resolved... This isnt something a "moderator" should have to point out, a poster should see this also: Searching for an issue that has already been resolved, is a lot faster, and will get you an answer quicker, than starting a completely new post, and waiting for a response... ALSO... from a response persons "point-of-view", I dont want to have to go to replying with a "link" to a topic, that gave them there answer, when they could have done the same thing themselves... I prefer the "personal" touch, but, if topics get repeating too much, that may get to be the responses you will get... i.e. I dont want to be cold, and have to post replies like... RTFM

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Kuhman
    And one more thought, although this too fits in the category of things that really should not have to be said: Please do not use subject lines like "how to?", "Please help me", "how do I ..." , "Need help", or other text that givers readers and people who search through the forum looking at subjects absolutely no clue as to what the post is about. Personally, I'm going to stop giving any help to such posts, even if the answer is as simple as a link or I know a simple one line answer.
    I am in complete agreeance here... I realize that many posts are done "in the heat of battle", or frustrations are high... But, if you really want an answer, quickly, the best form of communication, on the issue you are having, is through the "topic" or "subject" line, that, and the best forum choice. If its worth the time to post the thread, it is worth the time to research if the issue has already been covered, if not, then selecting the best forum to post, and using a well scripted topic / subject...

    As a final thought:
    Think of not only your issue, but, where is the best place for getting your answer, and asking for assistance by using a descriptive topic... It helps those people who are looking to solve a problem, in which, they would know the subject. The Knoppix.net Forums are frequented by many knowledgable, and helpful, people, but, many will only respond on what they know, and not "advertising" for there help, may not get you any...

    Sorry to have taken any extra bandwidth on this topic, but, I can see where Harry is coming from... It shouldnt have to be said, but, now that it has, maybe more people will be getting more resolutions to there issues and problems...

    Thank you for your time,
    Ms. Cuddles

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    6
    This post is the first one which a newbie like my meet at forum. It would be better to rename it as:

    Please post in the right forum; read tips & tricks forum at first

    I indeed run from 0 to Linux in 2 days after reading “Optimal man hd install� manual in the Tips & Tricks, which also eliminated several questions I wanted to post.

    L

    P.S. Remove that wild “School use“ topic from “Tips & Trick� forum.

  4. #4
    Member registered user
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    58

    Overall I AGREE

    I have been mostly lurking and ocassionally trying to help and get some of my questions answered. As a new user the biggest confusion I had was the order of the forums ( like general at top ...) and the , well I guess you'd call them hijacked threads where I expected to see the answer I sought in the general posts by the subject. So even though it has ended with private messages being blocked. Bravo Harry. Keep on with the good work.
    By My Hand,
    I Remain ~ in Service-
    Captain Cautious

  5. #5
    Administrator Site Admin-
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    5,441
    Another thing that perhaps should need to be pointed out to poster but apparently does is that it can be important to actually give people some information when asking for help. Take this post, for example:
    Quote Originally Posted by Killajoe
    i have 2 burners and none of them is recognized how can i resolve this please n e one i am new to the whole linux thing
    The user gives no clue what the two burners are, or even if they are on IDE, SATA, SCSI interfaces or something else. The person seeking help doesn't even tell others if the burners are both in the same system, what version of Knoppix he is using, how much memory he has on the system (or anything about the system) or even what software he is trying to use. At the time of this message being posted only the original post has been made in the other thread, but I'm willing to bet that Killajoe can't get much help until this information is given. For example, we know that 4.0.1 has burning issues, and what the fix is, but we don't know if Killajoe is using 4.0.1. Without Knoppix version number and drive info at a bare minimum, this post is more noise than signal.

  6. #6
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Belgrade, YU
    Posts
    334
    Last couple of weeks, I have strange and strong feeling that there is a tide of new users on many forums I visit regularly (Knoppix, Mepis, Kurumin,...), with unusual questions. Like "somebody"® made some organised action to make as much noise on forums as possible. If true, it would not be the first time "they"® did it.

  7. #7
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    348
    Like "somebody"® made some organised action to make as much noise on forums as possible.
    I don't believe in any conspiracy theory here, in that regard. If you follow US politics (and my first question would be..WHY?) it might be blamed on George W. Bush or lately maybe Tom Delay. It just seems to be a trend here these days. Sorry to use a little dry political sarcasm, but I couldn't resist.

    My guess is that since these perceived increases in lame/odd postings seem to occur in cycles, it has everything to do with the new school year/academic cycle. They should just make a new category here for "My buddy/friend/latest squeeze gave me this disc and I am clueless as to what it is supposed to do so please help me since I don't want to look dumb." or "I was told to download this and now I don't have a clue as to what it is." Many times, if someone just gave you a disc, they might not have been able to make it work either. They just wanted you to think you were missing out on something and make you feel inferior. How is THAT for a conspiracy theory? The main reason I suspect students is primarily the purpose that they could use a Knoppix CD for. It can allow them the use of a system that they would otherwise not be able to use as they might like to. I will leave that up to your imagination. I had worked within the educational system in the US long enough to have adopted that theory.

    The main reason I think people do not get help is because they do not have a clue how to ask for it, or they are just too lazy to do what it is they need to do to find the answers. I worked with a technical hotline on occasion and was frustrated by calls made by someone looking for me to do their diagnostic work for them. If they did not cover the basics on their own, I simply did not assist them until they had done so. many times the concern was resolved by following procedures outlined in the diagnostic and service manuals. They were just looking to get a quick answer to something that they were too lazy to find on their own. It's the refusal to RTFB or RTFM thing. I suspect that instant gratification stuff all over again here. Someone needs to have a bit of patience when asking for help also. I'm sure that everybody is just standing by waiting for that "Special" post to make their day complete.

    In order for someone to get proper help in a reasonable amount of time, they need to do the basics and THEN give as much information about what they are experiencing as they can, even if some of it might not seem relevant. THEN we also need to know exactly WHAT hardware/software they are working with, giving as much detail as they can. It is simply NOT enough to know that there are two drives! What type of connection do they have, ATA, SATA, SCSI, or Vulcan Mind transferrence? What brand/manufacturer is responsible for their existence? The amount of memory, type of graphics adaptor, network cards, sound cards, main chipsets, cpu, manufacturer AND model number, if available, ETC!!! Then we need to know if the system ever worked with any version of software whatsoever! Did it stop working with Windows and now it won't boot Knoppix? It simply MUST be Knoppix that is a fault there, just couldn't be a hardware issue! Those clouds of factory smoke coming out of the case should have NOTHING to do with it since it happened a few days ago and is not happening now. I won't mention it because it simply MUST have NOTHING to do with the problem and I'm just too lazy to type that info here anyway.

    The main thing I have noticed in this, and other forums is simply that someone will not go through more than a few pages or posts before they decide to stop looking for a solution and post a new thread. Many times the answer is there if they only looked a little harder. If they find something, they just seem to chime in sometimes with "I have that exact same problem", and then offer no more information about the concern as did the original poster. Many times they are unable to find something because someone else did not give a good description in the subject line either!

    Then there is the person who gets pointed in the right direction and then fails to get the right information from the link that someone provided. They seem to miss the point. If someone gave you a link to this thread, you should read it and realize why someone pointed you here. THEN you need to do what it is that you need to in order to get the help that you asked for. It isn't brain surgery, it's just common sense. If there is one thing that I would include in every curriculum in every school in every country, it is HOW TO DO RESEARCH AND FIND ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS!!!!!!! (AND not look like a deer caught in the headlights while doing so) (AND not annoy too many other people in the process either!)

    These are the same people that get indignant when you ask them for more information or explain the need to check the basics first. Many times the answer awaits in a faq or a sticky. They just did not bother to look any further or spend the time doing a little more research on their own.

    I am NOT saying that everybody that asks for help here is a moron, but there are a few that really take the cake from time to time.

    One must take the time to recognize the people who reply to many of the posts in this forum and others. They give freely of their own time with the intention of helping others resolve issues with whatever they are working with. The vast majority, if not all, are not compensated in any way for doing this and many times do not even get a "thank you" for their assistance. It is a gift of someone's time. I'm sure many could think of things they would rather do than go through these forums looking to offer assistance to somebody they don't know.

    I cannot blame anyone for adopting a cynical outlook while attempting to help many of these people resolve their concerns. It is often a thankless endeavor and many people take the help for granted. I have seen many posts like the one that is used in the example given elsewhere in this thread. That is how I ended up here in the first place. I was curious to see if there was another repository of good knowledge and advice about Knoppix. There actually is good information here. It might not be all about Knoppix, but if someone read through this thread carefully and completely, they might have an idea of how to post a question, in the right category, with enough information so that they might get the attention of someone that could help them AND not have someone need to point them here in the first place.

    I will now step/fall off of my soapbox or something to that effect and "That's all I have to say about that!" Sorry for the rant.

  8. #8
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT, U.S.A.
    Posts
    1,338
    ckamin,

    Nice... ( I think I was like this when I just started out; something breaks, or doesnt work, and I would post, to get answers )

    One point, I'd like to make, though, your response was very detailed, one thing I recalled, from my experience, came to mind... I didnt know HOW to get the information... The Linux commands are archaic, even the ls command isnt intuitively named as to what it does... Let alone lspci, lsmod, etc... A person "thrown" into Linux, and probably, not willingly, hasnt a clue what the command is, and thus, may not be able to even use the simple man pages to get information on something they dont even know how to spell, or that it even exists.

    Being, a past phone support tech, for the enemy, back on the roll-out of Win95, M$ taugh us to do three things... 1 ) Fix the problem, timely, or get them to someone who will. 2 ) Show them how they can FIND the answer that we did, so, if it happens again, they can find the answer themselves. 3 ) Ween them from using our support, in essence, put ourselves out of business, or our jobs.

    I, also, added one more thing into the "requirement", and that was show them something "a little more" each time, that would help them in there own daily computer work, working with our OS... Sometimes, it was being able to start a program, or config screen, three different ways; Device Manager could be started from three places; 1 ) click on START, and select it from the menu, 2 ) was right click on the MY COMPUTER and select PROPERTIES, etc... This same process applies to the way you change VIDEO SETTINGS configuration, etc...

    For me, learning Linux was, a liitle scarey, "am I going to break it?" kind of thing. What am I typing, and what does it do? Is it broadcasting important information that is "privacy" related, is it openning my system up to any threats, or attacks? etc... A "very" high amount of TRUST is placed on asking for assistance, and I dont place any less responsibility of "keeping that trust" that is placed on me, on giving bad information, or, taking advantage of someone who might not know what they are doing to "break" that trust. If I know the answer, I respond in kind, if I dont, but I "think" I do, I will ALWAYS say so...

    I dont believe on leading someone on a wild-goose-chase, nor giving them non-sensical commands that wont accomplish what they are trying to do... Had enough of that with the phone support, and other techs... "Yeah, just format your hard drive, that will solve your dial-up problems", kind of thing.

    In a case of a "dial-up connection problem" - I am quite sure that "re-installing" from scratch will solve the problem, but, it may not be necessary... In the case of Linux / Knoppix / Kanotix, it may only require examination of the symlink on the /dev/modem, and ensuring that it is pointing to the correct, and right port that the modem may be on... Why cause the extra greif of having to re-install, when it isnt necessary... In the phone support job I had, simply, one answer, to why this was being done... to ditch the customer.

    ckamin,

    You pretty much hit the nail "dead center" in your response... I just wanted to add that many people, who are posting, are frustrated, either by there own accord, or by forces not of there own, and, that, many, dont know anything of this OS, how it works, or how it is examined. They dont know what to type, what to change, or, even, why they would ever. They dont know the commands, and many, dont have a clue that even a "manual" exists for most, if not all, the commands, already is loaded, and kept, by the system.

    Some people dont have a clue what they even have. They buy a computer from Dell, or Gateway, or get it from a friend or family member, and have never seen what is even inside of it... They were "given" this "marvel of technology" sight unseen, and barely know, if that, how to connect the myriad of cables onto the back of it, let alone, detailed information of the components that are contained within it.

    I once asked someone if they had a computer, they respnded they did. I then thought we could have a discussion on details of there system, and asked what kind of processor does it have, they didnt have a clue what I was talking about... The response, was, I dont know, but, its a FAST one! ( and you want chipset information from this kind of a person? I dont think you are going to get it. )

    Trouble-shooting with these kinds of people, rely severely on the ability to get them to type something that will "tell them" what they have... MODEM = "blah blah blah, chipset XXYYZZ" - hence, why a lot of things can either be typed, or files examined, that will report back what was found. Windows takes advantage of this, for one, because they knew what kind of "technical" people they are selling there OS to, and, two, they knew these people wouldnt know this information, or be able to find out, on there own.

    If a person doesnt know what kind of processor they even bought, or, would respond with "its a fast one", you want these people to open there own computer? I dont think so. I wouldnt let them, I'd try my best to get my answers BEFORE I would let them crack open there own case. I'm not going to "open myself up" to any legalities of stray static charges, them deciding to "play" with that "big chip thingy" with the fan and hugh heat sink on it, while they are nosing around inside the computer...

    Technical Support people have to decide what "they" feel the "level of expertise" is of the person they are trying to help, and, upon knowing that, dictate the "how are we going to solve the problem" against that level of experience. They have to decide just how "far" they can go, with the person, before they are asking for trouble. This is another reason for some of the "posting" subject lines, and even the body of there questions, it gives the "level of expertise" the poster is working from...

    If the subject line says: HELP ME!
    and the body says something like this: I dont have a clue what happened, it just broke.

    You gonna have this person crack open there computer and tell you what they have inside it? I dont think so... This kind of a post shows EXACTLY what "level" the person is coming from, either within Linux, or with computers. ( in many cases, its just the "newness" of the Linux, they could be quite competent in Windows -=- DISCLAIMER HERE )

    Chances are, if you would come across this kind of post, the person is clueless, helpless, and probably, very frustrated, at this situation. Resolve would, no doubt, be a long string of responses of "type this command" and post back the output... these commands would probably be, commands that tell what "internally" is installed on the system, what is running, etc... without having to deal with asking them all the details of there own system, because, as we both know, they wouldnt know them.

    As for the whole "post correctly" thing, in the situation above, they did, they didnt know, and they wouldnt be able to, know. You dont want them to know, anyway... As the old saying goes... Cut To The Chase! Who cares if they know what they have or not, the problem is, they want "this" fixed, they, and many people fit into this category, they DONT WANT TO KNOW, and they feel, they dont NEED to know either, what they have in there own system. They come to you, to fix it, not be educated. The trick is, how do you fix it without giving them the education they dont want? ANSWER: give them commands to get you the information YOU want, to assist in fixing THERE problem, without making them feel degraded, or having to learn anything in the deal.

    type lsmod and post the output here...

    pk, type rmmod xxxxxxx -=- and then try it...

    great, it works, thank you for the helping me, HELP YOU, fix your problem

    From the "general populous", this is just enough information for them, without saying you have to "learn" why, and what you are doing... lsmod lists out all the modules that are currently running on your system, the offending module that is causing you problems is the one listed, in your output, named xxxxxxxx, so we need to remove that module, so, type this, and just to be sure it went away, do another lsmod, and check through the listing, again, and see if it is still listed, no? good, then test the problem again, and see if it is fixed. it is? great, have a nice day...

    Some people WANT to learn, but, a vast majority, of the general public, doesnt. Linux is archaic, cryptic, foreign, you name it, to these people. They want the system to work, thats it. Whether it be, to play solitare only, or do there monthly financial balancing, etc... or whatever, they want it just to work. When these people have something break, they dont care, in many cases, how much it costs, or how much THEY could fix it themselves, they think its all VOO-DOO chants, and just want it fixed.

    The people who deal with these kinds of people, just have to take heart, they arent going to change. The posts arent going to change, We have to change. If you have any "background" in the computer support field, you are barking up the wrong tree, if you think "everyone" is going to change. As Mr. Spock said in Star Trek - The Motion Picture: "The needs of the MANY, outwiegh, the needs of the FEW" - tech support people, though many, are not as many as the people who are asking for help. Thus, we, the support people, need to change to reflect the needs of the ones we are trying to help.

    I know this "ruffles" a few feathers, and bandwidth is going to suffer, but, what are we fighting for? For the "new people" to not be "new"? For these people to come here "enlightened" already? A newbie is just that, new, not a guru, not a genius, not a Linux savy person, they may, and in most cases, be, completely lost. I think there posts will reflect that, and, we, are trying to educate these lost souls, trying to fix there problems, trying to help them, thats it. We can "try" to help them fix it themselves, but, as the support field goes, that isnt our choice, it is theres. The last thing I have to say, along these lines, is, if we want the posts to get more "inteligent", we need to be more "supportive", more "understanding", and, lastly, dont fall back to, what, it appears, we are heading towards, posting responses on these people, who come to us for all the above stated, and simply post a response stating RTFM!

    The "Linux Community" is growing because we are ALL trying to be supportive, of everyone, and anyone, who asks for assistance. This is our "growth potention", this is what we are coming into being known for. Asking newbies not to be new, is ludicrous. A teacher is only as good as there students are to learning. Ask anyone who teaches, if the student doesnt want to learn, nothing a teacher can do, to change that. We are not only "teachers", but, we are also being asked to be "technicians". An Eletrical Technician, who is employed to wiring your house, doesnt go around "educating" the household on how THEY can do there own main breaker wiring for there own house... And, many people dont ask, thats why we PAY THEM for that. They have the knowledge, the education, and the job, of doing that... Not us.

    So? Are We Support Technicians, or are we Teachers? ( or a combination of both, as the need, or post, requires? )

    Ms. Cuddles

  9. #9
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    159
    Doh. Looks like this thread morphed into a "contest for longest post" while I wasn't looking

  10. #10
    Senior Member registered user
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Saint Louis, MO, USA
    Posts
    376
    Quote Originally Posted by Cuddles
    So? Are We Support Technicians, or are we Teachers? ( or a combination of both, as the need, or post, requires? )
    I'd like to rephrase that question. Rather than ask 'What are we?' perhaps we should ask ourselves 'What do we do (on this forum), why, and how?'

    Regards,
    - Robert

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Revised subject: 4.0.2 DVD and CD out now.
    By Harry Kuhman in forum News
    Replies: 46
    Last Post: 03-08-2006, 09:44 PM
  2. Subject/titles?
    By sn0wflake in forum Ideas
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-01-2003, 03:14 PM
  3. Subject : Konferenz DVD 2003
    By mzee in forum Knoppix DVD
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 09-03-2003, 04:05 PM
  4. posting
    By senorian in forum Hdd Install / Debian / Apt
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-10-2003, 11:00 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •