My domain name changed from bodhizazen.net to bodhizazen.com

All the .net links now apparently point to spam.

I got a message about this in the comments from your staff here

/usr/sbin/update-info-dir: 2: export: : bad variable name

The data explorer can be used to find all posts and comments linking to the old domain. Moderators can edit comments regardless of age and author but I don't think they can do automatic sitewide search and replace edits, and it might not be considered reasonable to expect a moderator to do the edits manually. So I fear the best approach with comments may be for you to delete them all manually, and post new comments containing corrected URLs in cases where it makes sense. You may want to post on meta (or I will if you want). Please also feel free to ping me in main chat about this.

I do not know the best way to resolve the issue, I have been editing links when I come across them, but I do not have access to the "data explorer" as I do not have access to the moderator tools.

I do not have access to the data base nor do I know what data base you use, nor do I know if your admins would be willing to manipulate the data base.

I am willing to work through posts / comments/ etc and fix the links if you give list, but, depending on length I can not say how long it will take me to work through all of them.

Not sure the best method to resolve the problem.

  • 2
    Thanks for posting about this! (I'm the one who commented.) Small correction: I'm not a Stack Exchange employee or a moderator or anything special like that ("staff"), just another user. I was talking about the Stack Exchange Data Explorer. I'm not very good at SQL and I'm about to step out, but when I get back to my computer I'll try and post a couple queries for questions/answers and comments, unless someone else has already done so. Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 16:28
  • I had sent you an email (first to the @ubuntu.com address, then to the one you used on Launchpad as the other one was apparently dead) about this issue some weeks ago. Did you even get the second one? Good to know that just your domain changed though, I was already fearing you might have taken everything down :)
    – Byte Commander Mod
    Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 23:22
  • 3
    Also don't forget the website links in your Stack Exchange profile, Ubuntu Wiki profile, and wherever else you have put it.
    – Byte Commander Mod
    Commented Aug 23, 2017 at 9:08
  • I'd contact your registrar about this... It seems weird, and your domain's registry date is still 2008. Was your name hijacked or something?
    – Kaz Wolfe
    Commented Aug 25, 2017 at 21:26

2 Answers 2


You don't need Data Explorer to find posts with links that need replacing: site search with url: parameter will do it just fine. See https://askubuntu.com/search?q=url%3Abodhizazen.net

For comments, use the Data Explorer query pattern in comments - it finds 85 comments as of now. Keep in mind that SEDE is updated once a week, on weekends.

  • 1
    I am working through the Q and A . Not sure about the comments.
    – Panther
    Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 18:57
  • 1
    Got them all by url search. Wait to see if anyone has suggestions on comments.
    – Panther
    Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 19:24

What to do with comments...

I don't know if there's a better approach available than just manually removing all the comments that link to the old domain (and have thus become spam) and replacing them, in cases where it makes sense to do so, with new comments.

As I mentioned, moderators can delete comments, but I don't know if they have any automated means to make this change.1 I am hoping a moderator will weigh in on this question.
We don't have any automated mechanisms for this. --Thomas W.

1 Meta.SE has Is there a way to fix broken links in comments? Can the mods edit comments? but that question is over five years old, very general, and doesn't address the case of numerous comments breaking in one specific way due to an unusual event of a one single highly useful domain having been subverted in a way its former owner cannot control, possibly for the purpose of generating traffic from our site.

Updating Posts

Your site and blog are important, useful resources for the Ubuntu community, and your old domain appears to have been bought to capture unintended traffic. It's good this is being fixed. Thank you for your actions thus far!

As I write this, I see you are already fixing the posts. I would be pleased to make some of these edits, but I don't want to step on your toes. Accidental simultaneous edits to the same post can be confusing and annoying. I recall there is a limit on how many edits a user can make to their own posts in a day, so if you reach that--or for any other reason would benefit from help--please let me know and I'll make some of the edits. (Of course, that limit applies just to your own posts, not posts by other users that link to the domain.)

Sometimes people are concerned about how a large number of edits carried out over a short time can push other posts off the front page. But this is a case where I don't think we need to worry about edit volume:

  1. The total number of edits is just not that high. It was well less than a hundred even as I began to write this. (Really this is enough of a reason not to worry, by itself.)

  2. The spammy nature of the site--identifiable by examining the site and the links therein, or by checking its whois record and noticing that the current contact person has been associated with questionable prescription-drug related sites--probably justifies any volume of edits.

  3. Furthermore, I think the main purpose served by our general reluctance to make a huge volume of edits in a short time is that it has the effect of putting off edits that might not need to happen. These edits do need to happen. Every post and edit (except some performed automatically by the system) bumps the affected question on the front page, and usually something drops off the front page as a result.

    For a fixed number of edits that are going to be done anyway, it seems to me that doing this fast rather than slow is not really a problem. It even increases the chance that the post dropped from the front page will be one of the ones brought there by one of your edits.

Finding posts and comments containing the old domain:

Michelle's post search and comment SEDE query should be sufficient for this. I've added these alternatives in case they are of interest, but I'm not suggesting they should be preferred.

This SEDE query finds posts that contain bodhizazen.net in the body. It returns 100 hits. Although it returns more hits than searching on the site with url as Michelle suggests, I would not assume it is better. The Stack Exchange Data Explorer searches snapshots of the site (updated weekly as Michelle mentions), so this query is probably just turning up posts in which the URL has already been edited.

This SEDE query finds posts that have comments that contain bodhizazen.net. It differs from Michelle's query in that it lists posts and gives post links, rather than comment links. Like that query is currently shows 85 results (which is what one would expect unless there are posts with more that one comment with the old domain). As far as I know, either query is sufficient.

  • 1
    Found by query (I wrote one too lol) but not Michelle's search - so if it's not rendered it won't be caught. I recommend checking the query next Monday when the data is fresh to catch any stragglers :)
    – Zanna Mod
    Commented Aug 22, 2017 at 19:15
  • I don't know if Google may be easier, but I'd just like to point out that it can also be used to detect links from the .net domain: google.com/… This searches for the following query in Google: bodhizazen.net inurl:https://askubuntu.com
    – Dan
    Commented Aug 24, 2017 at 8:59

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