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__General FAQ__

General FAQ by Tarwn
Posted: 22 Dec 02 (Edited 7 Jan 03)

Here are some suggestions, and a rule or two, for using the Tek-Tips forums. These suggestions and guidelines are based on comments from various members and have developed over the last few years. There are very few hard and fast rules - please read the guide-lines and use your common sense.

  1. Be nice. Try not to get impatient if someone doesn't understand your question.
    Do not start a new thread if you did not receive the answer you were looking for. This will only cause the second and sometimes both threads to get red flagged and taken down by management.


  2. Be nice. Try not to get impatient if someone doesn't give enough information for you to understand their question.
    This is a hard and fast rule. Bad tempered replies don't help anyone, and will just get deleted by site management anyway.

    Addendum: Writing all in CAPS is considered screaming and could cause people to ignore your post simply due to the annoyance factor.


  3. Don't ask people to help you do illegal things or offer to do them yourself; respect copyright laws while you're at Tek-Tips.
    This is a hard and fast rule.


  4. Remember that Tek-Tips is designed for IT Professionals. It isn't intended as a lazy person's way to get homework assignments done. Nor is it a free program writing resource. People are often willing to give snippets of code to clarify an answer or illustrate a point, but it's expecting too much to ask for a 'full code solution'.
    This is a hard and fast rule. Don't copy and paste your homework assignment in Tek-Tips unless you want your question and your Tek-Tips user-id deleted.


  5. Choose the right forum for your question. There are quite a few forums here at Tek-Tips, take a few minutes looking through the list of forums and pick the one that looks closest to your question.
    For Example:
    - Asking how to verify that someone filled out an input before submitting a form is considered a client-side operation and should be asked in the Javascript or VBscript forum for best results.
    - Asking how to verify a users inputs against a database using ASP would be considered more relevant to the ASP forum, but could be answered by looking at the FAQs
    - Asking for assistance or advice concerning a specific problem in an ASP page is probably the most relevant to the forum. See examples in the "Descriptive Subjects" section.


  6. Avoid posting the same question in multiple forums. Try to determine the best forum for your problem or question and post it there. If in doubt, ask. You'll be directed to another forum if necessary. If you don't get an answer in a reasonable time, then post to a different forum.
    Tek-Tips doesn't provide the ability to post into more than one forum at once, but people will sometimes post the same question in multiple forums anyway. The main problem with this is that other members will not know about the duplicate postings unless they visit all the forums. An answer may be given in one forum, another answer in a second forum and so forth. If a discussion is restricted to one thread, it is easier to follow up, comment and get closure on a discussion.


  7. Avoid asking multiple questions in a single thread, you'll get better results if you keep your questions focused on a single well defined issue.
    Likewise, if you are continuing a conversation on the same specific point, it is not necessary to begin a new thread, this could cause later posters to repost information that had already been mentioned earlier, or could dissuade them from answering if they have to backtrack through 3 or 4 differant threads just to understand the entire question.


  8. Use a descriptive Subject. Many of us will skip over reading the post if the subject doesn't indicate the question.
    Don't use Subject's like this...
        Does anybody know...
        Urgent help needed!
        Error message
        Basic question
        My )&*#$^)#&^$ PROGRAM won't ...

    Try Subject's like this instead...
        How do I read individual selected values from a multiple select in a form?
        What does "Either EOF or BOF is true" mean?
        How can I improve performance when reading this specific recordset with ASP?



  9. Make an effort to look in help files and/or other documentation or articles.  Help article's are often available online at the software or hardware vendor's web site.
    Common Online Resources:
        http://www.w3schools.com/asp/default.asp
        http://www.w3schools.com/ado/default.asp
        http://www.aspin.com
        http://www.asp101.com
        http://www.aspfaq.com/
        http://www.4guysfromrolla.com/

    Search: Use the Search facility and try to find answers before you post a question.
    FAQs: Read the FAQ's here at Tek-Tips and try to find answers before you post a question.
    Research First: Even if you don't find an answer to your question and end up asking in a forum anyway, researching and thinking about your problem will help you ask a focused question that will get answered, rather than skipped over.

    If an answer exists in a FAQ or a previous thread, youÆll probably be directed to that FAQ or thread rather than repeating the answer in your thread.

    FYI: to direct someone to a FAQ or thread, simply type (or copy and paste) the FAQ or thread number in your post, like this: FAQ333-2924 or Thread333-433465  
        The FAQ or Thread number can be found in the upper left corner above the title and will automatically be linked when you submit your post.
    Do not copy the URL from the address bar and paste this for the link, it will not link correctly.


  10. Just so you don't get the wrong idea: no question is too basic for Tek-Tips forums. We simply suggest spending a few minutes trying to find the answer yourself, and then if you can't, post your question.
    There is a lot of knowledge and help here.

  11. Don't worry if English is not your first language; that's true of a lot of Tek-Tips members and no-one here will criticise your use of English. You will find that more people will be able to help if you use English; please stick to English when using Tek-Tips.


  12. Try not to fall into the temptation of answering or asking questions by email, if you do (and we all do sometimes) then please post the solution on Tek-Tips when you're done so that everyone can benefit and we know the problem's been solved.
    Best thing is, if someone e-mails you, politely tell them to post it on tek-tips, thank them for the e-mail, but refuse to answer.


  13. Include specific details such as the version and service pack or patch-levels of the product you are using; a solution that works in one version may not work in another. If you are connecting to a database, give details of which database and which connection method you use. If you are using external add-ins, controls, or dll's please specify.


  14. If you are asking a question related to code, please post the shortest example of code that will reproduce the problem you're experiencing. Include relevant declarations and controls that are affected.
    For example, if you are having a problem with a recordset, including the database connection, SQL query, query execution, and recordset manipulation code is considered relevant and sometimes necessary, but including the 200 lines of code to display the page header would be superfluous.

    Note: Please use the TGML code tags when posting your code so the forum won't try to render the html, for information on these click the Process TGML link above the "Submit Post" button before submitting a new post.

    Provide sample result (or desired result) of your code if you can.

    Please report the exact error message if you are asking a question about an error you are receiving, please...Telling us you are getting an error is unlikely to result in a useful response. "My app errored!!!" or "Please Help." will not get as quick or accurate reply as "When I run my app under these conditions I get a syntax error on this line ... The error message is ..."

  15. Please acknowledge answers that help. Sometimes an answer is given but the questioner never replies in any way. It is hard to know if the problem was solved or if the questioner just hasn't seen the answer yet.

    Tipmaster Stars are a way to provide positive feedback. We all (even those us who say we don't!) appreciate receiving stars - but only when they are deserved...
            FYI: You "award Stars" by clicking on the link at the bottom left of the post.
            "Let <username> know
            this post was helpful!"

    If one of the answer's solves your problem, post a short reply and let everyone know what worked for you. This lets the person who posted the answer and everyone else who reads the thread know which answer was correct for you. That way other people can benefit from the knowledge base we are building here.

    Please also post the solution if you solve a problem yourself. That way, all questions will have the solutions. And all of us can learn from others' experience.


    When you reply to long threads note the person you are addressing. That way we'll know to whom the post is directed. For example,
    johnwm,
    I don't think the solution you posted will work in Version 5; that feature was introduced in V6.



  16. Tek-Tips is not a work place environment and the members have no contracts with answering questions.  If a member starts to help you and then was apparently not available to finish the help, do not get discouraged or treat them rudely, but instead  add a reply in your thread to see if another member may know how to help you.

    Note: Do not refer to members in your questions subject line by their handle or by any means  referring to a specific member.  This defeats the ideal of the forums members not holding any ties to questions.  No member has the responsibility to reply or help with a question.  There are thousands of other members to help with-in Tek-Tips, and surely one of them will.



Summary. Tek-Tips provides us with an opportunity to help and be helped. Please remember to show respect and appreciation to all other members of the forum, keep enjoying the forum and the programming. And, from time to time, give them $5 or so   http://www.tek-tips.com/supportus.cfm

"This FAQ, like a lot of others on Tek-Tips, was based initially on Terry Broadbent's FAQ, Thanks though to the members of the Round Table who also contributed. I have unashamedly stolen borrowed from various sources for this document. All of the good bits are theirs, all of the bad bits are mine." - Mike Lacey

Stolen Borrowed once again by Tarwn as the base for the General FAQ for the ASP forum, forum specific alterations and <cough>bad</cough> examples provided should be blamed on myself and not earlier authors. - Tarwn

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