The FAQ is a very, very important document. It forms the topical-foundation of ServerFault in the way that a constitution forms the foundation of a country's legal system. Because of this, changes to the FAQ have to be approved by the community. Wholesale revision like we're proposing here needs more than just the meta-regulars giving their input on it.

Meta-regulars have been working on a draft text of a new FAQ for ServerFault for the past couple of weeks. We believe we have it in good enough shape to send it up for approval by the overall ServerFault community. Is it ready, or does it still need work?

The process:
This question will stay open until 23:59ish UTC Thursday the 2nd. At that time, the question and answers will be locked, and up-votes counted. If "Yes, good enough" votes have a 2/3rds majority this FAQ will be posted as-is by StackExchange staff (after simple copy-editing, if needed).

If we don't reach 2/3rds majority, we will need to work on it more. This question will be closed, a new one posted to handle edits, and another voting-round will be held after the edit-round is completed. If we need an edit-round, we'll follow the edit process outlined out here.

Server Fault is for System Administrators and Desktop Support Professionals needing expert answers on topics related to managing or maintaining computer systems in a professional capacity for their company or clients.

If your question is about…

and it is not about…

We have sister sites

We also have…

… a list of the most common questions with links to the "best" answer we've identified.

How did we do?


2 Answers 2

up vote 14 down vote accepted

No, it needs more work.

This text has some flaws that still need to be worked out. We need more revisions.

If you have specific problems, add them as a comment. Though, for extended debate on specific points, another meta-question or chat-transcript is probably a better choice.

The bold parts between lists, should, like DBA's faq form a sentence. "If your question is about ___ and it is not about ___ ..." then what? –  freiheit Jan 29 '12 at 23:45
I may be somewhat late with this, but the datacenter operations aspect is missing completely, just as is sysadmin-related organizational stuff like best practices / ITIL. I also feel that each and every referenced tag needs a meaningful wiki summary to be able to serve as "further reading" –  the-wabbit Jan 30 '12 at 0:20
Being pedantic, I've spotted some minor issues. Some Bullet points close with a full stop, others don't. The bullet points also have some comma separated items, some are capitalised, some aren't. Use of & and / instead of and and or. The text of bullet points that have sub bullet points, should end with a colon. Also, is (lex legis) really required, doesn't legal by definition cover that? although TBH, I did have to google that term, as I've never heard it before. –  Bryan Jan 30 '12 at 0:28
@syneticon-dj - Absolutally, every single tag there needs a good wiki –  Mark Henderson Jan 30 '12 at 0:29
Sorry I'm going to have to put a +1 for no for the above mentioned reasons. I think the content is fine, but the formatting needs a bit of work –  Mark Henderson Jan 30 '12 at 0:32
Yup, I think we need a few more tweaks now that we've got more eyeballs on it. –  Shane Madden Jan 30 '12 at 1:35
It bothers me that this has been a work in progress for quite some time and only now some people are wanting to change things. –  John Gardeniers Jan 30 '12 at 3:18
@JohnGardeniers - that's always the way these things go, isn't it? ;) –  Mark Henderson Jan 30 '12 at 4:26
Let's consider that scoping the site to "Systems Administrators" might possibly sound like we're excluding people who are tightly scoped such as network engineers, datacenter folks, firewall administrators, storage experts, etc. –  Wesley Jan 30 '12 at 7:25
+1 - I'm not concerned about the cosmetics/grammar (though we certainly want a list and we need to fix that stuff before making this live), but I would like to see DC Ops included more prominently. –  voretaq7 Jan 30 '12 at 18:55
@Bryan I agree, there's some relatively minor issues, as you've listed, that need correcting. Other than the typography, grammar, and possible spelling issues what are your thoughts on the content? –  Chris S Jan 31 '12 at 15:44
The cloud tag was trimmed back as it was getting unruley. I think it probably needs more work than anything else. The bold parts don't "need" to be sentences, it just needs to be clearly understanbable, which I believe they are. This isn't college English 101. Right now I'm in a bit of a time crunch but getting a limited list of the "best" tags in the cloud and making sure they all have decent tag-wikis is something we should certainly do be posting the FAQ. –  Chris S Jan 31 '12 at 15:48
@WesleyDavid It needs to be short and concise; I certainly don't want a "Network Admin" coming along and thinking they're in the wrong place. But I don't want someone who administers their home network of 4 computers thinking that it fits them either... I think we'd all agree it could be better, but what would you put? –  Chris S Jan 31 '12 at 15:50
@ChrisS Freiheit's comment is the main problem, as I don't think that reads correctly. You could instead use something along the lines of, Server Fault is for questions relating to... and Server Fault is not for questions relating to..., aside from that, I'm perfectly happy with the text. –  Bryan Jan 31 '12 at 16:09
@ChrisS We don't need anything more than the list of what is acceptable and not acceptable. We don't need to qualify people's job titles. So, instead of "Server Fault is for System Administrators and Desktop Support Professionals..." it should say "Server Fault is for Information Technology professionals..." and then let the list of acceptable and unacceptable topics speak for themselves. That way it's clear that the site is for pros, and allows people of all specializations to participate. –  Wesley Jan 31 '12 at 17:03

Yes, this is good enough.

It's good as is, no revision-round needed. Approved.

There's a downvote on this answer - please only upvote the option you're voting for, don't downvote. –  Shane Madden Jan 30 '12 at 1:02
Maybe we can get a mod to reverse that downvote. Anyone here know a mod? –  John Gardeniers Jan 30 '12 at 3:17
Mods can't do jack about votes short of destroying the account of the voter. Which I can't figure out without db-hacking. –  sysadmin1138 Jan 30 '12 at 3:19

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