Forgive me if I missed the question but I did poke around. What questions are off-topic here? Obviously questions about Elementary's DM/WM (desktop-manager/Window Manager) and general desktop support where issues are primarily elementary related, but at what point are we drawing the line as Off-Topic?

I feel that I should add, this would specifically be what is inserted into the help center link found here.

  • I'm going to post my answers here separately so they can be voted on individually. – Lewis Goddard Jul 23 '15 at 12:22

Bugs & Feature Requests

Often filed by people who don't realise that this is a bug or feature request, there is a custom close reason set up for these. They typically don't have concrete answers, so cannot really be closed any other way. Asking for workarounds is on topic, however.

  • In my opinion, this covers Upstream Issues. – Cole Busby Jul 24 '15 at 3:58

Group Questions

The simple answer here is to split the question up into more easily handled chunks. Leaving them will make it harder to find and harder to answer, and they are discouraged across the entire StackExchange network.

  • Generally agree. Only exception: If one part of the question is already answered I think it's reasonable to edit the question to make it a valid one-issue question and inform the user to open seperate threads for the other (removed) parts. – quassy Jul 29 '15 at 20:43

Future Releases

This is not the place for speculation, so if something isn't publicly released, even as an alpha, it doesn't belong here.

  • This actually falls in line with gaming.SE's rule as well. – Cole Busby Jul 23 '15 at 15:54
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    Generally agree. But it'd would be nice to have "When will the next version of elementary be released?" around with a generic answer explaining "It's ready when it's ready" and elementarys policy towards releases. Even now there are a lot of questions about 0.3.1 and 0.4 floating around so there should be an answer to share with them. – quassy Jul 29 '15 at 20:47

Programming (that's not elementary specific)

Just view Gilles' answer, but it's basically that if it is not specifically about programming for or on elementary (in a way that is different from, say, Ubuntu), then it's off-topic.


elementary Packages on other Systems

I think, seeing as this is the elementary OS Stack Exchange, rather than the elementary Stack Exchange, that such questions would indeed belong on Unix.SE, with the possible exception of Ubuntu questions belonging on AskUbuntu.

  • If you're going to downvote, please explain why you disagree. – Daniel Foré Jul 24 '15 at 1:48
  • AskUbuntu would shun you for not using Canonical supported software, from my experience there. I would think U&L would be more supportive. – Cole Busby Jul 24 '15 at 3:59

Old (Unsupported) Releases

As we do on Ask Ubuntu, we should not accept questions about unsupported releases. It would be difficult to answer such questions anyway as most users of the site will not be using the older release in question, and it would also be bad practice to make the asker think it is okay to remain on software that is out of date and thus a security risk.

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    I'm unclear on why this has been downvoted, could anyone explain? – Lewis Goddard Jul 26 '15 at 10:23
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    I know a lot of people using Luna (myself among them) and wouldn't want to leave them without support. – png2378 Jul 27 '15 at 19:14
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    @PNG Yes, but are you going to support 0.0.1 until the dawn of time or are you going to say "I'm sorry but you really should be off Windows ME by now." – Cole Busby Jul 29 '15 at 0:52
  • Afaik elementary never clearly communicated what is unsupported / supported. From what I've heard some Luna users had the feeling they were running an unsupported system even before Freya released... In my opinion Luna should at least be supported for 6 months after Freya release date / until 0.3.1 release (whichever is later!). – quassy Jul 29 '15 at 20:50
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    @quassy well maybe this is a good time for the developers to decide what is unsupported. – RolandiXor Jul 31 '15 at 19:53
  • Yes, even though that does not necessarily mean that we as the SE community have to follow their decision. – quassy Jul 31 '15 at 19:55
  • @quassy it would be a rather unwise route to take. Without the support of the developers, you're asking the majority to hold up the roof for the minority. It's not a healthy situation for a QnA site. The few questions we get about old releases would hardly get answers (at least no readily), and in many cases answers would be impossible to come by because we're dealing with software that comes from repositories - and those don't stay around forever. – RolandiXor Jul 31 '15 at 20:03
  • Not saying we should support Jupiter (at all) or Luna forever. But if elementary decides to say Luna is EOL than we should still support it for some time. (In my opinion, as stated above, 6 months after Freya release / until 0.3.1 release, whichever is later.) – quassy Jul 31 '15 at 21:40
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    Realistically support (on our end) should end when Ubuntu ends support for the underlying LTS release, IMHO. – RolandiXor Jul 31 '15 at 21:41

Upstream Problems

Problems that are identical on systems like Ubuntu (14.04 for core, 14.10 for kernel) or Debian are likely upstream problems, and are off topic. There's no real reason why the question can't exist here too, especially if it's listed as a duplicate, but should likely be posted somewhere else for more exposure.

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    I dunno if I agree with this tbh. Why should a user of this site have to know our underlying architecture to have their problem solved? If it's not a bug and it happened on elementary OS, it should be on-topic imo. – Daniel Foré Jul 23 '15 at 15:58
  • AskUbuntu tends to leave these as answerable, but recommends asking on other stackexchange sites as well. – Lewis Goddard Jul 23 '15 at 18:17
  • It's honestly a matter of "How much should we cover" and if it is off the beaten path for the normal user of the OS, how would they know? If you, yourself know that theres a bug report runnning on launchpad for the issue or even wherever debian's bug reporting mechanism is, I feel you should close questions of these and may state to have the user look there as more reports tends to get more involvement. At least that is how I'm understanding this. – Cole Busby Jul 24 '15 at 3:57
  • @ColeBusby Right, upstream bugs should get treated like internal bugs, link to report, mark as duplicate, or offer a workaround. – Lewis Goddard Jul 24 '15 at 6:06

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