Thank you for your confidence in our abilities

But have you read this FAQ?

We get a lot of interesting technical questions on here, but Server Fault is meant to be first and foremost a resource for system administrators and IT professionals. In other words, Server Fault isn't meant to cater to every computer problem - just those that only exist in or can best be solved in the IT and sysadmin domain

Yes, someone here might be able to help you, but you'll find that other forums more focused on your topic can give you a much better answer than a bunch of IT professionals. It's likely that your question will be downvoted, closed, and in some cases marked "offensive." It's not that we hate you, it's just that we like to keep our corn pops separate from our cocoa puffs.

In that vein, here are a bunch of other forums where you can get help:

(This list contains the top two forums for each category as voted for below.)

Check out the answers below for even more suggestions!

What forums can people go to to ask the questions that are off topic here? Please list only ONE forum per answer so votes can bring the best forums to the top.

Return to FAQ Index

  • This is exactly what was needed! Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 19:27
  • 1
    Minor nit: I'd change the ordering of other/general so that google search was first. SO/SF are very well designed to promote the "search first, ask as a last resort" method of finding answers, which I think is important as a general principle.
    – Wedge
    Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 19:35
  • @Wedge - You're right, re-ordering now...
    – Adam Davis
    Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 19:47
  • 1
    It is so painful to consider sending people to Yahoo! Answers. Might we replace that with ask.metafilter.com?
    – davebug
    Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 20:07
  • @davebug - I added yahoo, google search, and askmetafilter as answers. Vote them up, and the top two will go on the list.
    – Adam Davis
    Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 20:31
  • is it worth cross linking this with a the SO question?
    – Sam Hasler
    Commented Apr 30, 2009 at 20:53
  • @Sam - I don't know. Crosslinking between SF and SO is going to be an interesting question for many similar topics and articles. At this point I'm going to assume that utlimately the communities will be different, and this question will adapt to this community's needs. I've prepopulated it with SO's answers, but I suspect it will become uniquely serverfault within a few months. In that vein, I'm not sure how crosslinking will benefit people, beyond the link to stackoverflow for programming questions...
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 1, 2009 at 14:17
  • Can someone add IRC please. I've suggested it below because it's a very immediate place to ask questions.
    – Gareth
    Commented May 6, 2009 at 11:04
  • As soon as someone lists IRC channels that apply to individual categories above, I will. Adding links to IRC software isn't going to resolve someone's problem - if they know so little about IRC that they need help finding software, they will have no idea what to do when they start the program. Links to IRC servers and channels for particular topics above would be appropriate.
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 6, 2009 at 12:40
  • Does this belong on meta? Commented Dec 2, 2010 at 11:47
  • So why are people voting to close this? It does seem appropriate on meta.
    – Zoredache
    Commented Sep 12, 2011 at 16:35
  • 1
    I voted to close this as noise or pointless because meta is supposed to be an area where we discuss the main SF site, or did I misunderstand something? Commented Sep 13, 2011 at 0:15
  • This needs to be updated.
    – gerrit
    Commented Mar 20, 2013 at 14:16

14 Answers 14


Google Search


ask.metafilter.com (there is a one-week waiting period after signup, before you are allowed to post a new question to Ask MetaFilter)


http://www.wolframalpha.com/ - (Hardcore) scientific & statistical information


Launchpad Answers, for projects hosted on launchpad, such as Ubuntu or Drizzle


Experts Exchange

(no link, just joking)

  • 3
    I'm tempted to flag as offensive... ;-P
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 5, 2009 at 15:14
  • 2
    i need help but they broke my google when i visited them so that i can't read any of their answers. they probably have a virus in their outlook i guess
    – username
    Commented May 12, 2009 at 13:50
  • 3
    +1 "The Website with the Hyphen in the Name"
    – gbarry
    Commented May 21, 2009 at 15:34

A moderator closed this question regarding screen resolutions as "not sysadmin related".


What does "sysadmin" mean? Does it mean just "networking"?

Who are these professional systems administrators that don't use computers with monitors? ...With users that don't use computer monitors?

Are output devices not part of "the system" and do they not need "administration"? I'm confused.

  • 2
    Hardware and software problems on a single case basis are not particularly sysadmin or IT related. If you had 500 new computers and 500 monitors and they were not compatible but should be, then it might be applicable, but in your case you have hardware that used to work, nothing changed in your setup, and now doesn't work. It's not a question that requires sysadmin or IT expertise - just computer repair expertise. While the skills needed overlap, this site is focused on those questions that are explicitly and wholly within the IT and sysadmin domain.
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 21, 2009 at 15:44
  • It's a fine distinction, and over time we'll gain many more 3k+ editors than can vote to close and open questions, and this line will shift. There will be many comparable questions that will remain open and many others that will be closed, and it will always be a source of friction. But this website isn't meant to cater to every computer and hardware problem - only those that really only exist in, or can best be solved in, the IT and sysadmin domain.
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 21, 2009 at 15:48
  • 2
    Thank you for answering, but that sounds to me like the fix is to find and replace "my" with "this user's". Or, maybe just tweak the title to sound more encyclopedic: Change "Why won't Windows allow my monitor's native resolution?" to "Force native resolution to Non-PnP monitor in Windows." Commented May 21, 2009 at 16:58
  • Whether or not that question actually addressed an issue experienced by the user or the person asking the question was performing desktop support, not IT administration. Since Server Fault exists to cater to IT administrators, it was off topic. Yes it is a fine line, but not that fine. Don't you get upset when people ask you to fix their VCRs because you're a "computer guy"? Commented Jun 2, 2009 at 22:59

WikiAnswers is another popular general Q&A site (and my workplace...)

  • General technical questions
    • irc://freenode/serverfault
    • irc://freenode/stackoverflow
  • Server Fault meta discussion
    • irc://freenode/serverfault



Hard Forum for PC displays is actually one of very few of its kind. Most "display" forums integrate a bunch of video card, TV and gaming talk. This one focuses on just PC displays.


IRC Links to programmes that you can use to connect to an IRC server.

  • 3
    The links you provide aren't forums for people to ask for help - they are programs that allow people to get to the forums. This is like saying, "If you need help, go download a browser." Do you have links to specific IRC server/channels that provide a good forum for one of the areas abaove?
    – Adam Davis
    Commented May 6, 2009 at 12:38
  • 1
    As great as irssi is, XChat may be worth mentioning under the Linux section (or listed separately as cross-platform?)
    – dbr
    Commented May 8, 2009 at 21:22
  • I only listed them for the initial poster to add IRC to the list. There should be a whole IRC question & answer really.
    – Gareth
    Commented May 9, 2009 at 8:57

Workplace or Career Questions:


Yahoo! Answers

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