This answer links to a zip containing drivers for Windows running in Bootcamp. I think the answer is pretty self-explanatory, but somehow I don't feel right to just leave them at is. I don't know what to comment either, as it is self-explanatory?

I've read this question and this. Downvoting might be the answer, but I believe this is correct answer and should not be downvoted anyway.

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    Its worth remembering the real reason behind that rule - if that link goes down, its useless to anyone else.
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Commented Jun 10, 2017 at 0:24
  • 1
    As someone who had the displeasure of having to update a answer I submitted with a link to a device driver every month for the last three years I can tell you answers which contain links to drivers are not that helpful (gained maybe 50 reputation from that particular answer)
    – Ramhound
    Commented Jun 12, 2017 at 22:57
  • @Ramhound so, what is the appropriate answer to a question which the obvious answer is installing driver (not updating) other than giving link to the drivers in question? Link to the website and how to search the required driver?
    – Vylix
    Commented Jun 12, 2017 at 23:00
  • I have no suggestions.
    – Ramhound
    Commented Jun 12, 2017 at 23:21
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    @Vylix what about providing the vendor, driver name and version? For instance Realtek, High Definition Audio Codecs version R2.81 for 64bits Vista, Windows7, Windows8, Windows8.1, Windows10 Driver only
    – pyb
    Commented Jun 14, 2017 at 14:53
  • @pyb - No, bad, that's so much worse. The purpose of a link is so someone can easily find a document. What you're doing provides the same purpose as a link, but requires more manual effort in most cases. Better to use an easier HTML hyperlink for its intended, designed purpose, and then shun and complain at bad web designers who make bad decisions of causing link rot. At very least, web designers should provide a "permalink" - a hyperlink that is intended to be permanent - to valuable resource. Consumers should demand this, not us standardizing a process of working around bad decisions.
    – TOOGAM
    Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 1:27
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    @TOOGAM Cool URIs don't change will be 20 years old next year. I agree that's how it should be, but that's just wishful thinking.
    – pyb
    Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 15:48
  • 1
    The answer is deleted. Here is a screenshot of it for <10k users. I suggest you include a link to this screenshot in your question. Commented Jun 16, 2017 at 21:05
  • @pyb - doesn't have to be wishful thinking if you're willing to invest a bit in combating the problem. If a website won't provide permalink, don't waste your time referring people to it. Simple as that. If the website has a resource, find the resource on another site that does have a permalink. Even if the location needs to be created first. Case in point: I don't ever recall trying to share a web resource using a description like the one you showed. (Therefore, I have my doubts that you'll provide a convincing argument why I would need to.) The answer is simple: just don't do it.
    – TOOGAM
    Commented Jun 17, 2017 at 6:17
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    @TOOGAM So you'd rather link to a non official site, which has no more guarantee that it won't break in the future and has the extra risk of containing malware? I respectfully disagree with this. Your habits should not be used as guidance. Arguments should. People have been referencing books using their titles, authors, etc. because these are intrinsic properties, unlike the address of a building where you could read that document. Therefore I link to official URIs with details on how to find it were it to move.
    – pyb
    Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 19:24
  • @pyb : This conversation-in-comments is getting a bit old, but since you asked a question, I will answer it: Depends on the non-official site, and how much trust I have in it. For instance, I tend to trust TOOGAM.com to have official copies of software. Although I didn't mention "posting the hyperlink yourself" as an option from the get-go, I did have that strategy in mind (but just didn't think such a hopefully-obvious possibility even needed to be explicitly mentioned). So, your suggestion that non-official sites are malware risks seems overly broad.
    – TOOGAM
    Commented Jun 18, 2017 at 19:28
  • @TOOGAM It's just another argument in favor of linking to official websites. Chances of getting malware are higher and that risk is unnecessary. Also corporations have usually more resources that hobby websites, so I would expect the rate of 404 errors to be better/
    – pyb
    Commented Jun 19, 2017 at 13:27

2 Answers 2


If the answer is software or drivers published by a reputable source (manufacturer, OEM, etc) with an established web presence then telling people what they need and how to get them and then providing a link for convenience is best. If the link goes dead, knowing what they're looking for and how to get them can allow a corrected link to be added later if necessary.

If the answer is a custom solution that requires software that exists but isn't necessarily professionally maintained, the answer is probably "it depends".

Asking "Is this package really the only solution?" or "Is there a way to host this package in a way that is less prone to change or loss?" may be good questions to ask before deciding the best way to provide the solution.

At the very least, explaining in the answer the nature of the software solution, where it comes from or how it was constructed, why it is necessary, and that it isn't guaranteed to be available for ever may at least be an appropriate flag pointing future people towards a solution even if the original solution is no longer available.


I don't like that answer as I do not believe it is truly self-explanatory. Even with allegedly explanatory addresses like the one linked, it still doesn't answer the question, only infer the possible answer by merit of solidifying your problem's parameters.

As Journeyman Geek stated, the rule is essentially in-place due to dead-links making an answer useless to people later. I don't see how the string of, Cirrus-Audio-Drivers-for-apple-macbook-running-windows-10-via-bootcamp could lead anyone to an answer immediately, unless they copied that text, removed the hyphens, and then started the troubleshooting journey from the very beginning, presumably again.

An acceptable answer IMO would explain the gist of your problem, the gist of your solution, and then the link to do the solution if it's unreasonable replicate it here due to say, huge size, otherwise a link correlated to your gist's explanations after providing them here would be optimal for source-citing as opposed to source-answers, i.e., link answers for this context.

For this answer, I would have provided the name of the drivers affected and their suitable replacements, their replacement publisher, and if possible, a gist of why you needed to replacement drivers in the first place in case the alternative driver source vanished.

I also do not consider a "reputable" manufacturer as some kind of gold-standard source. Microsoft jabs aside, I've seen Microsoft URLs die over time, so I wouldn't trust anyone else blindly.

It's best to make a local copy of the content and cite its source.

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