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RESF Mailing List Guidelines

Before Posting to a list

There are a number of ways you can find help within your system. If you don't find the answer there, try to look into the list archives before posting a question. This is a high volume list and chances are that someone has already had the same problem you are now trying to fix. See Useful Resources below for a list of places to try. Refer to this presentation on mail etiquette that you should follow.

Still stuck?

If you cannot find an answer after searching the archives or by using the resources described below, then writing to the list is a good idea. The guidelines below were written and adapted to make sure your message gets the attention it needs to be read and answered.

Keep in mind that while there may be many users on the lists, your post may go unanswered, even when following these guidelines. (See section below re: nudging) Posting to the list should not be considered a guaranteed method of receiving support.

Posting Guidelines

Be Courteous

Be courteous and polite to fellow members in the list. Never swear or be rude to anyone. When you interact with people on any of the RESF mailing lists (or indeed on any communication platform), you are expected to act in accordance with our Community Charter and its values.

Keep it Short

Most RESF Lists maintain a maximum message length of 40 kilobytes. Remember that your message will be copied potentially thousands of times when being delivered into people's mailboxes. It is wise to keep your messages as short as possible.

Avoid including log output (select only the most relevant lines, or place the log on a website or in a pastebin instead) or excessively quoting previous messages in the thread (trim the quoted text down to the most recent/relevant messages only).

No attachments

Attachments to email make the messages much bigger. They create an enormous amount of extra Internet traffic when a mailing list sends the message and attachments to thousands of people worldwide. They also can create problems for the recipients, who may be limited to low-bandwidth connections. A reader may not know they are downloading an email with a very large attachment until it is too late, and they might be blocked from getting other mail until they finish that download, which makes them frustrated.

Don't use attachments to your email. Instead, post a file in a pastebin, or elsewhere on the web, and include a URL to that file in your email, not the file itself.

Lastly, we have to store the attachments. We don't want to store too many :-)

Starting a New Subject

When you send in a new topic, do not start by replying to an existing message, but rather, start a new message to "rocky@lists.resf.org". This keeps messages organized by thread, for people who like to use threads (on high-volume mailing lists like this one, threads can be a great convenience).

Furthermore, please do not recycle messages. Recycling messages is replying to an existing thread by changing the thread name. This creates confusion and diverts the number of people replying to the topic.

For details see https://web.archive.org/web/20070219193422/http://mm.bbspals.org/message-recycling/

Write a Good Subject Line

Make a subject line that clearly tells us what you need. This is a point that can't be overemphasized. Try "Crash after setting up disks in Rocky 8.5" instead of "Can't install!!" Why? So that people with certain skills, looking for someone to help, will notice your message. That helps you get help from the right people quickly.

On a high volume lists, many people just skim through the subject lines and only read the messages that catch their interest. So, by creating a good subject line, you increase the chances that your message is actually going to be read and eventually answered.

If You Are Replying to a Message

Make sure we can tell what you are replying to. Place each part of your reply after the text it addresses (i.e., NO Top-Posting, please see "Wikipedia - Top Posting" and links therein for more on this). Most mail readers automatically put a '>' character in front of each replied-to line. It gives a conversational flow to the text, and people know what you're replying to. Trim irrelevant material. It makes it easier to read your reply and helps the reader to stay on subject. Using bottom, interleaved posting is recommended as it is more organised.

The fact that you're sending the email from a smart-phone or similar device doesn't invalidate those guidelines. Please consider sending the reply at a later time when you have access to your regular email system or send a private reply instead.

Replying to Digests

In a some high volume lists, you may choose to receive mails in digested mode. However when replying to such messages, please avoid just hitting the reply button. This creates meaningless messages like "Re: Rocky-Mirror Digest, Vol 7, Issue 193" which does not reflect what you are talking about. Please do the following:

  1. edit the subject to reflect what topic you are talking about
  2. snip out all the irrelevant parts of the digest other than the post to which you are directly replying

Let Us Know When Your Question is Answered

When you get a solution to your question (or find it yourself after posting to the list), reply to your original e-mail describing what solved your problem, adding a [SOLVED] to the end of the subject line. This will let people know that you don't need help any more with this and can look for other posts to help. Also, it makes a search in the archives easier when someone has a related problem in the future.

Commercial messages

Commercial messages, including job postings, are not currently allowed on the RESF mailing lists.

Behavioral guidelines

If a mail has offended you personally, please send a private message to the person expressing how you feel, instead of sending it to the mailing list.

Please remember that we have members from all genders and nationalities. No gender abuse is allowed on the list, and do not include any gender specific slang in your posts. Also do not indulge in racial or regional criticism. This is a very serious violation.

Be careful when using sarcasm and humour. Without face to face communications your joke may be viewed as criticism. When being humourous, use emoticons (smileys) to express humour. (tilt your head to the left to see the emoticon smile) :-) = happy face for humour.

Behave in a professional manner in the mailing lists. Any mistake could put you under the scanner and at the receiving end of much rebuke.

While uncommon, list moderators and administrators do monitor the lists and will take action on users found to be in violation of these guidelines.

Do not Cross Post

Avoid posting to multiple lists simultaneously. Pick a mailing list that is most suitable for your post and just use that. CC'ing multiple lists should be avoided.

Post to the the mailing list that is most suited to your purpose and then just copy the link to that page or mailing list and paste to all the other mailing lists you want to post to. This will reduce the amount of data duplicated - only one copy will be accessed by all who read it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crossposting

Stay on-topic

Make sure your topic is relevant to the chosen mailing list. For example, sending a political petition not related to the purpose of the list. In turn, replying on list to an off-topic post tends to magnify the problem.

Unsubscribing

To unsubscribe from the list you can visit the web page for the list at https://lists.resf.org or by sending an email to $listname-leave@lists.resf.org

Use the common language

Unless you are a RESF mailing list that is dedicated to users speaking that particular language, communicate in English. Other languages might be ignored merely because the users in these lists might only know English or use it as their common language. Refer to the Communicating and getting help page for more information on other mailing lists.

Use standard language and not colloquial or regionally accepted abbreviations. Visit http://www.jargon.org for more such acronyms.

Use the universally accepted standard English. Always do a spell check before mailing to the list. Grammar doesn't matter as long as one is understood. Do not use SMS language. Do not use dots(".....") to conclude the sentences as is common across social networks.

Avoid long signatures and disclaimers

We find value in your main content rather than signatures. One or two lines would be optimal to convey messages that must be included in your signature and avoid huge disclaimers describing how your mail is private and confidential while sending things to the mailing list.

No chain letters

Never send chain letters to the mailing list. A mail simultaneously sent to more than 10 users will not reach the list. This is to eliminate possible spammers/bulk mailers to reach the list.

Do not use ALL CAPITALS

Using capital letters in your sentences is considered shouting. It is considered as being rude. If you want to emphasize on something use this or this.

Avoid repetitive posting

Often people helping on the mailing lists are volunteers who, just like you, have busy lives. If you do not get a response within a few minutes or hours, avoid re-posting the same question repeatedly. Give a minimum of 24-48 hours for an answer, and if you don't have one by then, give a "nudge" to the list by replying to (not re-posting) your original message.

Please read all your mails before replying to a mail. Someone may have already answered it.

Useful resources

Getting Help From Your System

There are many ways to get information from your system. Get a terminal window by right clicking on the desktop. In the window type one of the following (without the '$', and substitute application-name with the name of the application you are having trouble with).

$ man application-name
$ info application-name name
$ locate stuff-you-want-to-know-about
$ rpm -qd packagename

Documentation

The Rocky Linux Documentation Team is working hard to provide excellent documentation for the project. You can see their efforts in:

Rocky Linux is also based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux, so RHEL documentation should be helpful for users of EL distributions like Rocky.

List Archives

Mailing list archives can be browsed using Hyperkitty at the link below:

Mailing List

If you encounter any issues or problems regarding a mailing list setup or its operation, please contact the list administrators rather than posting to the list about the problem. For lists on resf.org, you may reach the list owners at $listname-owner@lists.resf.org. There is a link to the -owner address at the bottom of the listinfo page for each list.

Search It!

  • https://duckduckgo.com
  • https://google.com

Try to narrow down search terms using a list name (e.g. rocky users) or by including site:lists.resf.org in your search query, which would search all the archives.

Acknowledgements

This document includes (in part or in whole) content adapted from Fedora's Mailing List Guidelines. We thank them for their continued work on these guidelines and commitment to nettiquite. Please see their own acknowledgements for more information


Last update: 2022-11-10