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Author Topic: NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP  (Read 348 times)

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Offline alynur

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NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP
« on: September 25, 2018, 11:27:33 pm »
Hi guys, shouldn't we be asking posters for the basics, like inxi -Fz, whenever a new post comes in looking for help? Wasn't there an automated request not so long ago for that?
What was I thinking?

Offline zebedeeboss

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Re: NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2018, 02:01:24 am »
There were but we had a number of users raise concerns over it and it was more effort to answer those concerns than to simply drop it. So the auto answer thing was turned off.

You can still ask for that info though, if you need it to help with the reply.

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Online PCNetSpec

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Re: NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2018, 07:19:43 am »
Exactly, the minute we implemented that we got inundated by people who (quite wrongly) thought the output was giving away information that could be a security risk. It ended up with what was **supposed** to be a time saving measure actually slowing things down as responders had to go through a 4 - 5 post sequence of explaining why the information was (or wasn't in that particular post) necessary when someone say posted a screenshot of their desktop.

We even got the occasional vague accusation of somehow "spying" when the question didn't really require inxi -Fz output.

We only enabled it in the **support** forums (ie. it wasn't enabled in General Discussion, User Tutorials, etc.), but people don't always:-

a) Immediately understand the forum structure .. so post stuff in what may not be the correct section.

b) ask support questions that require an inxi -Fz output.

There's no way for us to automatically distinguish which posts require it and which don't .. so doing it 'wholesale' ended up wasting both poster and responders time with explanations, so was killed off.

It unintentionally ended up being a choice between:-

Two posts asking for it where it was necessary and it being posted
or
Four to five posts explaining why it was/wasn't necessary in individual threads .. and that we weren't spying or risking peoples security.

I think at the end of the day in an attempt to save both posters and responders time we implemented something that overlooked the fact that a lot of people came to Linux precisely because they don't like being asked to give out information unnecessarily .. something they reminded us of pretty quickly, and it must be said quite correctly :)
« Last Edit: September 26, 2018, 07:33:47 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline alynur

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Re: NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2018, 09:17:13 am »
Thanks for the explanation. I don't mind so much asking posters for the inxi -Fz info so much, it's just that I'm not a very good typist, more of a one finger per hand type. It's not like I can give a lot of help anyway, but I see a lot of effort by some people(PCNetSpec) trying to help a person out and later in the post we find out there is something different about the poster's equipment that requires a different responce. I know I'm getting too old to let this stuff bother me, but what the heck, I don't have anything else to do.
What was I thinking?

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Re: NEW POSTS ASKING FOR HELP
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2018, 03:21:10 pm »
I don't think there are really any workable shortcuts, it would certainly help everyone concerned if posters with a support issue posted as much info as possible .. problem is, a lot of people coming here for help have no idea what would be helpful.

I mean at first glance "My wireless is broken. please help" may seem unhelpful .. but then would a new user know which commands to use to get info about their adapter in Linux ?
(probably a bad example, because there is a sticky at the top of the Networking forum telling people what info to post for wireless issues .. but nobody ever reads it)
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