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#1 Posted on: 2004/3/14 14:04 How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
My goal here is to speed up replies and solutions to posts. If you have a functional problem, and in your post you just relate the problem, i.e. "I have blank page" and then simply add on "please help me", this is not the way to go. Someone then needs to ask you for more information, or to switch on "debug", and post the results. In most cases a functional problem cannot be fixed or traced to its source unless you switch on the debug and post the results.

To switch on debug, go to system admin-->preferences and then general settings. You will see a "Debug mode" field. Choose "PHP Debug". Then go to the page that has problems and copy and paste any error messages.

See the Home Wiki Troubleshooting a Blank Page section for tips on switching on debug manually if you need to.

It also greatly helps if you always state your Xoops, PHP, and mySQL versions.

Please use a specific effective title for the post; this assists other users to answer you who have had a similar problem. Many users will not be attracted to a "please help me I have a problem" title. A relevant title also helps other users find solutions to their problems.

Before posting please do a search in the XOOPS top right "Search" box using appropriate "keywords" and find out if the subject has been dealt with before. The search results bring up "Forum" results among other things. Remember to click on "Show all", and browse through the pages.

If another user is able to quickly guide you to another forum link dealing with the same issue--then that may indicate that you have not done a thorough search yourself. In some instances users are just looking for a quickie answer without doing the groundwork. It can sometimes take a while to find the answer you are looking for using search, but it is worth the effort. It is also a great way to learn about Xoops.

Please don’t report an issue as a "bug" unless you are sure you have exhausted other possible reasons. If a problem is a "bug", then you will probably find many other people post about the same issue. But if multitudes of people don’t have your problem, then the problem is likely with your set-up or individual install.

Summary:

- Use a relevant effective post title
- For functional problems do a debug if appropriate, and state your set-up versions
- Before posting do a search to find out if the issue has been dealt with before.

Tip: When searching and you find some posts, hold down “Shift” as you click on the post title, this opens the page in a new window. Stops you getting a “this page has expired” message when you go back to the search list.

See also:
http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/bugs.html
http://noverse.com/blog/2012/06/how-to-write-a-good-bug-report/

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Edited by Mamba on 2014/7/16 9:43:32
JackJ
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#2 Posted on: 2004/3/14 15:28 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
Thank you. Hopefully at least a couple people will take your excellent suggestions (facts) to heart.

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Brad
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#3 Posted on: 2004/3/14 15:34 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
Simply Brilliant,

Please make JACKJ's post 'sticky' in all of the applicable forums!

Cheers JACKJ,

My big suggestion would be to include the following, simply because people often seem to have a hard time bothering to look in the docs, even when directed:
(Please forgive if this is posed more elegantly elsewhere)
-------
If you can not log in to XOOPS set debug options, you can set it in your database:

Setting XOOPS debug in the database:
In any dB access tool (phpMyAdmin, etc.) open the table: [xoops_config]

In Column [conf_name] find the row:
[debug_mode]

Set the [conf_value] in the [debug_mode] row to one of the numeric values below:
0 No debugging
1 PHP debug
2 MySql/Blocks debug
3 Smarty Templates Debug.

That may save quite a few more needless posts.

Maybe we should spend a few days tacking on and then lobby to make it sticky?

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tripmon
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#4 Posted on: 2004/3/14 15:44 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
That was going to be my own suggestion, but decided against it. Since you mentioned it, I'll second the motion to sticky the post.

If I may also add, Herko and others have always had the unenviable task of politely asking users not to double post their questions in more then one forum.

I realise that certain situations may seem urgent and people want to be sure that their question is seen. The major problem with a double post of the same question in different forums divides the answers in a way that makes finding all relevent information that much more difficult to find.

Keeping your questions in one spot insures that it will not get overlooked and keeps all the answers and replies in one easy to read spot.

Cheers


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Stewdio
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#5 Posted on: 2004/3/15 19:25 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
*bump*

Sorry for the uncharacteristic bump. I feel it's an important message for all users.

Cheers

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Stewdio
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#6 Posted on: 2004/3/16 3:38 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
Thanks jack. A timely post that can only be helpful to anyone who reads it. I would add a further comment regarding the latest topics list operating here; If a post does not get answered on the latest topics list, it will often dissapear for good unless the poster "bumps" it to the top again. This is fine for experienced forum users, although a series of "anyone ...? Plese help ...! "follow ups is a bit sad. There is a simple hack to catch all unanswered posts and all unread posts in the forum and I wonder why this is not implemented on the XOOPS site?? Many of these posts are first timers who have not even had a "welcome to XOOPS response". That's poor housekeeping IMHO. In essence your post attempts to promote good protocols and coutesy from forum users, but I think we should also consider implementing this catch all feature in return.

Richard


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carnuke
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#7 Posted on: 2004/3/16 17:55 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
If the XOOPS webmasters don't want to make it sticky, they don't want to make it sticky? No point in pushing them..:)

That idea never occurred to me--but I would be happy if they want to write something with a similar message in their own name.

I just quite enjoy helping people out if I can, mainly at the weekends. Keeps me off the streets.

I do think new users would get answers quicker if they understood the protocols of posting in Xoops.



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JackJ
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#8 Posted on: 2004/3/17 1:53 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
JackJ

Quote:
I do think new users would get answers quicker if they understood the protocols of posting in Xoops.


I fully agree; so much of this forum is filled with repetitive content. Even since your post I have seen a post called "help" and another about blank screens after install. It actually gets boring having to churn out the same replies, so some of thse folks miss out on basic advice.

JackJ, all I can say (and I hope I'm not speaking out of line here)is that the docs site is working on a FAQ document for newbies. I (personally) would like to see a link to this in the General information sidebar here with sticky in each forum linking to it. Just my thoughts... not an anouncement Just as a an aside, whatever happened to Cblue?? she was appointed community helper, then into the core team and since, we have not seen or heard from her??

Please keep up the good work jackJ, despite the frustrations, many of us really appreciate your frindly and informed input, besides, who else would suport wfsections??


best regards, Richard

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carnuke
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#9 Posted on: 2004/3/17 2:11 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
Hey guys,

This is a very good post, but making it sticky doesn't really make it better visible (honestly, who of you reads the sticky posts of the forums you want to make a post in?). We're working on a XOOPSiquette that will be the rules for this site, amoth others how to post in the forums. A link to the XOOPSiquette will be visible for everyone.

About cBlue: she's still around, but she's got a new job that takes a LOT of her time and energy (and she's loving it), but it keeps her away from the XOOPS community at the moment. She's not gone tho

Herko

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Herko
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#10 Posted on: 2004/4/8 18:20 Re: How to effectively post a question in the Xoops forums.
Edit: missed these posts

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JackJ
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