With 3341+ questions tagged ubuntu would this seem a good migration option?

The most recent ones are:

How can I change my uid without opening another user account?
vmware linux headers not found for ubuntu 10.10?
How to copy image to clipboard, to paste to another application?

  • Do you have any example questions that were asked on SU (of any age), but would be much better on AskUbuntu? I'm having difficultly deciding if I personally think this is a good or bad idea because linux questions aren't off-topic on SU.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 11:34
  • @DMA57361 - I don't know. I've added links to the latest 3, but you'd need someone with more Ubuntu experience than me to say definitively.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 11:41
  • @Chris, I'm hardly an expert, hence my hesitation, but see Jeff's 1st comment on the blog post which summarises my concerns quite well - the sites have different types of users (personally I would ask any Ubuntu questions I want answering on SU). I guess heavily Ubuntu-specific questions (development? bugs?) would be better other there, but otherwise if someone's decided to ask here, why push them away.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 11:49
  • @DMA57361 - agreed, but I think the option should be there. I'll see if one of the SU mods is in chat tonight and raise the issue again. Perhaps we need a [featured] meta question for migration target suggestions (with evidence) - unless [featured] doesn't work here of course.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 11:55
  • 3
    @Chris - it depends on the necessity. For example if only 1 out of every 100 Ubuntu questions (and here's where my question mark currently sits) on SU would be better on AU, then having the migrate option may invite over-zealous migrations of questions that should stay put.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 12:00
  • @DMA - I've changed the question from "can we have" to "do we want". I think that's probably a better question to ask.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 12:02

4 Answers 4


Summary: no, I don't think we should unlock this migration path.

As with all things unix, that to me is a bit of a special case.

I view it thusly:

  • Super User is for computer enthusiasts, who love OS X, Windows and Linux — and for that matter, all software and hardware — equally.

  • Unix/Linux is for people who love unixes of all flavors and types.. but probably hate Windows and only begrudgingly use Macs now that they are unix-y.

  • Ubuntu is for people who love just one type of unix: Ubuntu. They are on a holy mission to create the “unix for the rest of us”.

These audiences are really quite different in their approach, goals, and what they love and hate. I’m disinclined to allow a lot of arbitrary migration between them.

But in GENERAL, yes, we don’t want that kind of serious topic overlap between sites. Unix is just .. special.. in this regard. See Joel’s post: http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/09/fork-it/

  • 1
    ubuntu does not contain even one line on unix .
    – Lincity
    Commented Jun 5, 2011 at 10:52
  • Excellent sum-up of the (generic) interest ranges of the different groups. Like when I have a question, if distro even comes into it (which isn't often), I'm likely to frame the question in the terms of Debian instead of Ubuntu, as a Linux Mint user.
    – killermist
    Commented Jun 17, 2012 at 20:51

This is bit of a yes-and-no situation. The option to migrate would be handy, but this might result in all questions being migrated.

What I suggest is to let the question remain on Super User. If the question seems a bit tricky/convoluted , perhaps leave a comment stating that the OP might get better answers on Ubuntu ?

  • +1 Except I think rather than leaving the comment questions without satisfactory might as well be moved (Note: moderators can do this, and it has happened previously)
    – 8128
    Commented Dec 31, 2010 at 17:17

True and I agree, yet I'm against migrating all already existent questions to AskUbuntu.

Also, check out this blogpost http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/10/new-question-migration-paths/ about new migration paths.

  • 1
    I wouldn't want a mass migration either. Each question should be taken on it's own merits.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 10:38

I don't see any harm in doing so. My biggest concern is educating the community that not every question needs to be migrated, and although Super User moderators are known for having a very strict closing policy, some questions have their merits on Super User rather then AskUbuntu.

However I do think the close reason would be useful.

There is an expanded discussion of what I meant with this in the comments. It might add more value then my actual answer does.

  • As I asked in the question comments: Do you have any example questions that were asked on SU (of any age), but would be much better on AskUbuntu? So, my question is: how often will migration be needed? It's not an area I can personally comment on (seeing as I rarely touch any form of Linux), but I'm just thinking if only a small proportion of Ubuntu questions need migration, wouldn't it be better to simply close those that do crop up and redirect the asker manually? Allowing migration if it's going to be rarely needed just seems like it will invite unnecessary migrations.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 12:38
  • @DMA. Since Ubuntu is focussed on Ubuntu, pick any question tagged Ubuntu and you will have your answer. The problem is Ubuntu has a different goal. I am not against the idea, and I am not saying questions will get better answers there. Honestly, I had my account on AskUbuntu removed because it's not where I would ask my Ubuntu questions, but there could be a need to migrate in future. My concern is more educating the community. I am already dealing with questions people want to move to WebApps that do not belong there. Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 13:27
  • 1
    @DMA As far as closing them off-topic and manually migrating the questions is concerned, that is just going to cause more frustration. Why should someone retype a well thought out question because a select few thought it wasn't worth allowing the migration path, which won't harm Super User or AskUbuntu in any way. Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 13:30
  • I disagree entirely with your first response - IMO every Ubuntu tagged question does not belongs on AU. And saying forcing people to retype is bad is true, but so is migrating questions that do not need migration! That's why my main question above was how often will migration be needed? - if lots of questions will need migrating daily then yes add the path, otherwise don't add it if it isn't needed - the risk is it will be misused (accidentally, I'm not claiming they'll be malicious use). It's a matter of volume, reducing whichever of those two possibilities will happen most often.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 17:26
  • @DMA I think you miss my point entirely, but honestly, I don't know how to explain it better. I think the wrong question is being asked, and it is becoming a storm in a teacup. Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 17:36
  • @Diago upon a re-read you are correct, my apologies, I did misunderstand. I'll leave my previous comment for chronology purposes. Still, I'm not sure how many Ubuntu questions on SU actually need migrating. That said, are there any stats on how many questions are migrated down the other paths? If it's all relatively rare I guess it's a mute point anyway.
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 17:57
  • @DMA. Considering that most of these sites only came out of beta in the last 2 weeks, it is almost impossible to have any considerably valuable stats. It is really a mute point at the moment. It will always be an ongoing thing. The big problem is education on when migration should be done, not whether we should have the option or not. Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 18:13
  • I think I get you now, even if migration isn't given an option users can (and will) still post "ask this on AU" comments on inappropriate questions. So then, the obvious follow up question is: when should migration of questions to AU be done? :)
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 18:18
  • @DMA All the moderators have a weekly meeting and it is one of the topics we are actively discussing at the moment. Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 18:21
  • Fair enough, I'd assumed there wasn't an answer yet - otherwise you'd have probably posted it.-The question there was intended to be a little tongue-in-cheek, partly because it is indirectly what I was trying to (and probably should of) ask at the start, because "how often will migration be needed?" is going to entirely depend upon the answer to "what questiosn should be migrated?"
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 18:34
  • 1
    @DMA & Diago - the phrase is actually "moot point" Wikiontary definition
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 14, 2010 at 22:43
  • @ChrisF Pardon? I can't hear you... let me just turn the volume up... ;) ___ Fair enough. I'm sure it's probably not the first time I've got it wrong...
    – DMA57361
    Commented Oct 15, 2010 at 7:29
  • @DMA - don't worry - lots of people do.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Oct 15, 2010 at 7:42

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