This is a follow-up to a recent Meta question: Where do EC2 and AWS questions truly belong? That question was posted by a WebApps moderator, calling attention to inappropriate migrations to WebApps. The gist of the post was that WebApps focuses on web-based stuff that acts like apps, and not hosting services.

SU's and wiki excerpts basically direct all such posts to WebApps. An excellent answer by allquixotic described the complexity of dealing with the issue.

No formal action resulted from that thread, and it seems not many SU users were aware of it. A well-meaning user just updated the wiki excerpts for these two tags to enhance the usage guidance, but the revisions reflect the common, incorrect assumption that these topics belong on WebApps (and the edits were approved by other users who were also unaware).

We need to do something to provide proper guidance for how to handle these questions, because virtually none of them belong on WebApps.

  • If you read allquixotic's answer, redirecting most of these questions properly will be an uphill battle, and perhaps outside the familiarity of many of the users who would be doing the redirecting and close voting. We could just decide to make these questions on-topic and deal with them here if they are asked here.

    People with enough knowledge to suggest a better site for specific questions could do so, but driven by expected better resources for an answer rather than site scope.

  • We could decide that they are off-topic here except for content questions that are always on topic on SU. Simply close them and offer any guidance we can on where the OP could try re-posting.

  • We need to clean up our tag wiki information, at least removing the WebApps advice. If none of the above are viable solutions, perhaps we could encapsulate allquixotic's analysis in the tag wikis and have the excerpts direct the user to the wiki for detailed guidance. The wiki advice often isn't read by the poster, but at least it would provide ready access to the advice for community moderation. I've proposed some simplified guidelines in answers, below.

Voting on any Meta question is always useful to indicate how much concern there is about an issue. But what would be the most useful in this case is answers and comments suggesting how we should resolve this.

Note: we also have with a handful of question and a wiki excerpt that directs users to webApps. I suspect this is in the same boat. The excerpt directs users to WebApps, but I'm not familiar with whether that is appropriate.

  • 1
    Sounds more like Webmasters than WebApps territory – random Mar 17 '17 at 3:05

Guidance for one facet, possibly a bullet in the wiki:

For questions about writing code related to AWS or to any application running on AWS, Stack Overflow may be a more appropriate site.


Guidance for one facet, possibly a bullet in the wiki:

For questions dealing with the AWS services, themselves, or administrative tasks associated with the host, Server Fault may be a more appropriate site.

  • Unclear if the SF people would consider some of these falling under “networking”, which they explicitly redirect to SU. – Alex Shpilkin Jun 1 '18 at 14:42

Guidance for one facet, possibly a bullet in the wiki:

For questions about the operating system or any PC application hosted on AWS, post here on Super User (or any site on which the question's subject matter would be on topic for a PC).


Tentatively I've simply edited the excerpts to read

$variable are on topic here only if they're related to interactions on local computers, otherwise other sites on the network may be more appropriate

  • I had problems with "interactions" when I saw the previous edits. You can't do anything with AWS unless you're interacting with it on a local computer, so that basically says anything involving AWS is on topic. – fixer1234 Mar 17 '17 at 6:47
  • Which leads me to ask, what would be on topic with AWS for us? – Journeyman Geek Mar 17 '17 at 6:49
  • I proposed that in one of the answers. Basically, anything about the OS or application running on AWS that would be on-topic here if it was running locally on a PC. – fixer1234 Mar 17 '17 at 6:52
  • which is where keeping it vague feels like a good idea. There's just too many possible sites that would be relevant here – Journeyman Geek Mar 17 '17 at 6:57
  • How about something on the order of, "$variable are on topic here only if the question is about the operating system or using a PC application running on $variable. Otherwise, other sites on the network may be more appropriate. – fixer1234 Mar 17 '17 at 7:10
  • 1
    Sounds better. Do the edit? ;p – Journeyman Geek Mar 17 '17 at 7:12
  • Done. They're in the queue. – fixer1234 Mar 17 '17 at 7:19

Guidance for one facet, possibly a bullet in the wiki:

For questions about using the AWS Management Console, or any other future web-based AWS UI that behaves like an application, WebApps may be a more appropriate site.

  • The management console? I'm unsure about this - I'd say that too belongs on server fault? – djsmiley2kStaysInside Mar 19 '17 at 7:10

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