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Last post Nov 09, 2007 01:56 AM by mbanavige
Nov 09, 2007 01:56 AM|LINK
Finding your way in the ASP.NET Forums - Tips and Guidelines
If you're a new member to the site: Welcome aboard!
Whether you're a new member to the asp.net forums or even if you've been here for awhile, this post is intended to help you get the most out of the forums.
As with any on-line community, standard rules of
netiquette should be followed. While this post doesn't represent a complete set of forum guidelines, it covers some of the more common issues/questions you might come across as you begin to participate.
Now...down to business. [:)]
When should I start a new thread?
Before you start a new thread, take the time to search for your answer first. You can use the
site search and also
Google to see if answers might already exist for your question. Many of the questions posted here each day have already been answered either at this site or at the many other Internet sites that host ASP.NET content.
Where should I post my question?
It's not uncommon to be a bit overwhelmed at first by the number of individual forums at this site. Finding the correct forum to submit your post plays a
very important role in ultimately receiving an answer to your question so go ahead and take a moment to look around and familiarize yourself with all that's available.
Always look for the most specific forum that relates to your question and post your question in that most specific forum.
This means; if you're Getting Started with web forms, don't post to Getting Started. Instead, go ahead and post right to the
Web Forms forum which is more specific for a web forms question. Similarly, if you're getting started with a GridView, go ahead and post to the
Web Forms Data Controls forum rather than the Getting Started forum.
Remember: Always pick the most specific forum that relates to your question.
Also: No duplicates please. Each question should be asked only once - being submitted to that most specific forum.
If you're not certain if you're posting in the correct forum, check the top of that forum's post list to see if an "Announcement and FAQs" post has been added. These types of "Sticky" posts
often contain some specific information about that forum and what it is intended for.
How should I ask my question?
Now that we have an idea of how to determine where to post, your next question might be: How should I write my post to help make sure I can receive an answer.
Use the post subject to provide a quick summary of your question. Don't just write "Help!!!" or "Emergency!!!" in the post subject. If your post subject doesn't encourage other forum members to click on your post, you might not get an answer right away.
Provide specific information such as the language you're coding in (VB, C#), the Framework version you're targeting (1.1, 2.0 etc...) and a code sample in your initial post. If you receive an error in your code, go ahead and post that error message.
But...don't overdo it. Posting the code for an entire page may be too much. Try to keep your code sample relevant to your specific question.
Don't include confidential information in your posts. Sometimes this can be overlooked if you're copying source code into your post. What you post will ultimately become very public.
For a complete article on "how to ask a question", give this a read:
How to ask a question
Now that I've received a reply - what's next?
A reply to your question may or may not represent your answer.
If the reply represents an answer, go ahead and click the "Mark as Answer" button on that post. You can actually mark more than one post as an answer if multiple members contributed to your answer.
If the reply doesn't represent an answer, go ahead and submit a follow up post explaining why the information posted did not solve your problem. If you don't indicate why the response(s) received so far aren't helping, other member might think you're
To learn more about the effects of clicking the "Mark as Answer" button, I'd recommend reading up on this site's
Community Recognition Program.
Somebody already marked my thread as Resolved?
On occasion, you might find that your thread has been marked as resolved and an answer was selected - even though you didn't personally click "Mark as Answer" on any of the responses.
This can happen when:
-- A response to your question appears to be a technically correct answer.
-- Some time elapses where you don't reply to that apparent answer to indicate that it was not your solution.
If that post is not your answer, you can unmark it (Click "Mark as Not Answer"). At this point, you should add a follow on post as to why that members post did not answer your question.
Replying to old posts (aka:
If you come across an old thread on the forum that you think you might have answer for, we ask that you
don't provide an answer for that old thread.
What this? Don't answer the question?! Yes, that's right.
When you reply to an old thread in a forum, that
old thread finds its way back to the top of the forum list. This causes a more recent thread to fall off the bottom of the list and move to page 2 (or 3 or 4 etc...). This reduces the number of members that might
see and possibly answer the question posed in that newer thread. If you have time to provide answers to any forum questions (thank you!), please stick to the forums more recent threads. There's a member still waiting behind that recent question hoping for
There are a couple of different ways to go Off-Topic.
1) The various forums at forums.asp.net are for ASP.NET questions. This means, if you need help with Windows forms, Windows Development, Classic ASP, IIS settings, Window Server etc... then this is not the forum for your question.
We do host a few forums here that at first glance don't seem to be specific to ASP.NET at all. For example:
SQL Server, SQL Server Express, and SqlDataSource Control,
MySQL. While these technologies can certainly be used outside of ASP.NET, they exist as unique forums here at forums.asp.net to support the needs of the ASP.NET developer. Questions posed in these forums should always
be done in the context of ASP.NET.
Other forums that you might find valuable are:
-- Silverlight: http://silverlight.net/ -- IIS:
-- Classic ASP: http://forums.iis.net/1032.aspx
-- Windows Client Development: http://windowsclient.net/
Note: The membership is shared between Silverlight, IIS, ASP.NET, and WindowsClient so you can use your same login credentials across all these sites
2) Another way to go "Off-Topic" is to reply to an existing thread in these forums with a question that is very different and unrelated to the question ask by the member that started that existing thread. This is often referred to as
Thread Hijacking. Thread Hijacking is prohibited.
Account Signature Guidelines
Within your account profile, you have the opportunity to specify a short "signature" that will appear at the bottom of each of your forum posts. The guidelines for this signature area are:
-- No Advertising
-- No affiliate links
-- 2 link maximum (to on-topic ASP.NET related content only)
-- 256 characters or less in length
-- No animations (image animations or other)
-- Up to 1 image is allowed, with max dimensions of 220px wide by 60px high
-- If stylized markup/css is used (background colors and such), then the max image dimensions apply
-- Font sizes no larger than the site's default post font size.
-- The site's Terms of Service must not be violated.
With so many members and so many points of view, we cannot hope to always agree on what the right answer to a question might be. In fact, it is often these different opinions on a topic that ultimately connects a member's question to a truly helpful answer.
If you see a current topic for which you disagree with the opinions expressed in the existing posts, go ahead and post your opinion too. But please keep all posts polite, courteous and on-topic.
Thanks for reading and once again