From reading the SO Blog post, it seems the general consensus is that Ask Ubuntu is special since most users want simple, easy answers that don't require hacking something to get it to work.

However what if I wanted an answer that gave the complicated, but better, answer? I'm thinking more of server, command line only type stuff. It seems that this site wouldn't be the best place to ask because I'll get instructions and a simple intro guide, not the in depth answer I was looking for. Should I post it on Unix&Linux or Ask Ubuntu?

And before you say "Try [insert distro] if you want to do some hacking", I like Ubuntu and its derivatives, and won't change that. However Ubuntu can be used for more than just simple stuff.

4 Answers 4


Honestly, the goal of the site is to provide the best, most accurate and complete answer. If there is a complex question that can be solved using a simple approach - then that's even better.

In the end the question will dictate how "complex" the answer is. Here's an example question which has two correct answers. One that's completely correct, but very complex. The other is simple by nature, though not entirely "complete" with the end results. In this case the author has found the latter answer sufficient - but the community can also add merit to other answers by voting on them. Doing so helps to highlight multiple potentially great answers that helps add value to the question - and to other users seeking a solution to that same question.

As the question asker you don't have to settle for an answer that's unsatisfactory. We're building a community of experts - answering questions and asking them too. Eventually if you don't find the answer you're looking for - you can apply a bounty to the question to help prod a more complex, but complete, answer.

That information can be found in our FAQ - You'll want to try and avoid discussion forum style questions that are vague though. If you can keep questions focused on a particular item - the complexity of the question doesn't matter. Most of the time it's the scope of the question that causes an issue on this site.


I think you've got the wrong idea about who the people here are. We're mostly either Ubuntu developers, members or power users.

We aim to give the most helpful answer possible, not the most simple. If you have a complicated issue, ask it and the answers should reflect the required amount of detail. Just remember, as with most things in life, if you put garbage in, you'll get garbage out so you should make sure to explain things, include model numbers if hardware is involved, explain the software stack if you're doing something utilising multiple software systems (and it's not default) and include what you've tried already to speed the whole process up.

The only time you'll hear any of us suggest another distribution is if it's genuinely the right thing to do. There's very little gained trying to hammer a square nail into a round hole.


Go for it. Just put in your question that you want a detailed, in depth answer and tag it with the ubuntu-server tag.


I also search on SuperUser, and Unix/Linux. If it is a work computer, ServerFault is an appropriate choice. And sadly, Ubuntu has gotten strange enough that I've gone to Debian (and/or Linux Mint LMDE) as they feel more like Ubuntu was to me 5 years ago.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .