Let's try and keep things sensible...
≈ Why I set this mailing list up
Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind (or to avoid going insane).
I've been the owner/moderator of the redhat Yahoo! group for a while now, and one of the moderators of the linux Yahoo! group, and the standard of posting on these groups, on the redhat group in particular, has gone really down the pan of late.
These groups appear to be populated now by Help Vampires with no inclination whatsoever to do any research before asking questions, and by people who seem utterly clue-repellent when being given explanations by their "elders" about how to post in a manner that makes their mails clear, concise and suitable for archiving.
People will insist on posting questions like "how do I get a graphical login?" or "how do I access stuff on my Windows partition?" − it's not that these questions are particularly stupid, if you don't know the answer it doesn't mean that you have the same intelligence as a cabbage. The big problem is that answers to these questions are available on countless FAQ pages that are revealed when spending no more than a few seconds using a search engine. Indeed the FAQ page for those groups (and for this mailing list) has answers to those very questions, and new subscribers to those areas are sent a link to that page when they join! List maintainers really go out of their way to give the newcomer this information, but nooooooo, da newbie is so clever that s/he doesn't need to read this basic stuff, right?
Maybe I'm getting old, maybe I'm just getting burned out and/or bitter, one thing I am becoming for sure is not prepared to do other people's legwork for them. For one thing, I have better things to do with my time, not to mention that information that someone found out for themselves instead of having it served up on a silver platter is information that's more likely to be remembered and, above all, understood.
This list is intended as a place where people who are willing to do their own homework can share their findings with others who are equally motivated, and where they can ask help when stuck in a rut. It is also intended as a place where people can carry out such discussions without having to spend time trying to educate lazy people. The kind of person this list is intended for should, for example, be able to guess what its name refers to.
≈ List policy
There will be zero tolerance of sloppy posting. I can think of no valid reason why people should have to trawl through loads of sludge, nor why the archives should be polluted with malformed data, just because one person can't be bothered to post correctly. For what is generally accepted as "correctly", see this page. Your e-mail client doesn't let you quote correctly? Get another e-mail client because yours is b0rken. Your webmail facility doesn't let you do things easily? Using a browser to send mail is nothing more than a kludge so you shouldn't expect it to be easy. How easy do you reckon it is to read USENET with an IRC client or to resolve DNS with an FTP client? Try using the right tool for the job at hand and you'll find things a hell of a lot easier all of a sudden.
If you ask questions that are already answered in a bazillion different areas on the 'Net you will be told to STFW and that GIYF (see here for the meanings of these acronyms). If you repeatedly ask questions that are best answered with a terse "STFW" then you might want to question what you're doing here.
Topic drift is an inevitability on mailing lists such as this. I'm not going to get cranky if messages aren't strictly related to Unix and nothing else as long as there is some kind of link to computer hardware. Obviously, it would be preferable if the hardware question was to do with getting the hardware working in Linux (or any other Unix) but I'm not going to be too draconian about that.
However tempting it is to bash an easy target, this list is not about bashing Microsoft. Their software does a good enough job of ridiculing them without anybody's help.
When you post to this list, I'll assume that you've read and understood this page. Help us help you, for instance by giving us as much background information as possible and log extracts etc… Eric S. Raymond's Smart Questions page is a must read.
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