Is it against the rules to post answers that solve problems without using the command line?

I posted an answer here, but apparently solving a problem using Synaptic Package Manager is unacceptable.

  • 1
    I was able to install the updates by <some tool not available by default> should at least mention how that tool is to be obtained or used. Otherwise the majority of your "answer" was composed of "me too" + "random feature request for something that already exists".
    – muru
    Commented Jan 2 at 12:26
  • Synaptic is installed by default on most Ubuntu variations.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 13:56
  • @GlenM Synaptic hasn't been installed by default for ages on Ubuntu. It's no longer a default on Ubuntu desktop systems.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Jan 2 at 18:11
  • Strange because it was installed be default on my Xubuntu 22.04, on three systems.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 21:17
  • Even if it isn't how do you install software on Ubuntu? Open the software centre and search for Synaptic. I am sure anyone looking for answers is already familiar with that.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 21:29
  • @GlenM then say that? They might be familiar with the software store, but there's no reason to assume that they know what synaptic is these days.
    – muru
    Commented Jan 2 at 21:38
  • @muru ok, I will admit I assumed people could copy and paste Synaptic into the software centre. Once you run it it has three buttons - reload the database, mark updates and apply. As to your original reply at no point did I refer to or ask about a feature request. What I did say was maybe to enable automatic updates.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 22:43
  • Considering OP's problem is with the software centre in the first place, it's rather funny you'd assume people would use it to get something else to solve the problem - for all they know, it might not be possible to do that at that point. To me it seemed like you were asking for Ubuntu to enable automatic updates, not the user, who's have problems with getting updates to work in the first place.
    – muru
    Commented Jan 2 at 22:46
  • To me, your answer basically is the equivalent of "Q: I'm having problems filtering text with grep. A: Me too. I got it working with the Silver Searcher. Maybe also <some random idea>". I'd have downvoted and flagged that for deletion as very low quality.
    – muru
    Commented Jan 2 at 22:54

2 Answers 2


No, of course you can post an answer that details how to do anything by any available means.

However, I also don't think the Mod comment actually state a very clear or understandable reason why the answer is deleted.

I believe the reason your answer does not qualify as such is because it lacks sufficient detail on how to do what you state. If you improved the answer by adding 1) How to install synaptic and 2) How to do the exact steps that solved the issue for you, then your answer could be undeleted.

  • Thanks Artur. I agree I should have provided more detail on how to use Synaptic.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 14:05
  • So is anyone going to actually solve that person's problem? My answer works, even if it isn't thoroughly described. Not only does it work it provides a complete and clear description of what will be upgraded with the option of not applying the upgrades.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 23:21
  • @GlenM just add details to your deleted answer as Artur and terdon told you and let us know. Me and certainly other people here would be glad to undelete your answer once it has a sufficient level of details! Commented Jan 3 at 9:32
  • I fixed it. See what you think.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 3 at 13:04

As Artur said, posting answer that don't use the command line is absolutely fine. However, your post wasn't actually an answer. After your edit which removed the suggestion of the already existing feature of unattended upgrades, this is the entirety of your answer:

I have had the same problem. I was able to do the updates through Synaptic Package manager.

OK. So what is this tool? How does one get it? What do you need to do with it to get around the problem? How do you use it?

We expect answers to have more detail here and explain what needs to be done. The question doesn't actually ask a specific question, which is unfortunate, but a perfect answer would explain what this "prepared update" thing is, what causes it, how to avoid it in the future, and how to get around it. Your answer only suggests that using some tool in some unspecified way might be able to do some undefined improvement.

I know it seems like we're all a bunch of nitpicking pedants. And, frankly, many of us are. I certainly am! But the goal of thee sites is to provide a useful library of questions and answers to help future visitors. This is why we're so persnickety about "quality" and rules. It seems weird at first, but the simple truth is that these rules, and this pedantry, result in a useful resource and are what stops us from becoming the noisy mess of the classic forums.

  • But all the answers that use the command line to do the exact same thing as using Synaptic are ok? How do you get this tool? It is installed by default in most Ubuntu variations.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 13:54
  • 3
    I don't see any command line answers there, @GlenM, but the point is that those would show what you need to do. If you had posted, for example, a screenshot showing what buttons to press on synaptic to get around this, or an explanation of why synaptic would work better, that would make a big difference. I admit that I, personally, would not have deleted your answer but I would probably have converted it to a comment since it wasn't complete enough to stand as an independent answer.
    – terdon
    Commented Jan 2 at 13:59
  • Yes there weren't any answers, just comments, my mistake. I see what you mean about improving my answer. Thanks.
    – GlenM
    Commented Jan 2 at 14:03

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