i asked rsync not removing single quotes around array of strings --filter list on ServerFault, but it was closed as off-topic without explanation.

i am trying to automate a safe way to move files from multiple machines that came to our business with an acquisition. i specifically mention safe because i know these machines are heavily infected with malware and cannot have them boot up on our HIPAA protected LAN. i posted the question to ServerFault because that is the site where i found the most relevant existing answers to my questions. A very similar question about mutt on ServerFault is referenced, but that is not closed.

Maybe a better solution would be to tag the question with SuperUser, StackOverflow or some other means so that i can continue to do my JOB until at such time that it definitively belongs on another site.

I do not know any sysadmins who consider simple bash scripting software development.


I didn't vote to close this question, but I came pretty close. I thought about it for a while.

I'll take a wild guess at why some people voted to close it:

The business context you mentioned in your question here is utterly missing from your question on the main site. Thus, it might have looked like an academic exercise. Such academic questions often get closed as off-topic or migrated to Unix & Linux, one of the sites where enthusiast questions often get better answers.

If I were you, I would be sure to add the overall context to the question, so that it's easier to see that it's a professional question. This not only discourages people from marking your question as off-topic, but also lets people come up with alternate approaches which may help with your overall issue.

  • i believe adding context to the question would just make it longer and less likely to be read, not to mention demonstrate lack-of-focus. Thank you for the suggestion. i already know many alternate ways to solve this, but since i am a professional, i need to know why this is not working. If i had not tested this, i would have polluted our existing network with malware. Professional IT people need dependable, repeatable, and robust automation. Alternate ways to solve a problem are sometimes a way of skirting around the issue. – rjt May 9 '13 at 19:25
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    The point is, it wasn't at all clear from your question that you are a professional. You may need to make that clear. – Michael Hampton May 9 '13 at 19:27
  • i understand Michael and appreciate your candidness and insight of the SE platform. – rjt May 9 '13 at 19:31
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    No problem. Server Fault is different than other Stack Exchange sites in that we reject questions which aren't in a professional context. Some people get a bit carried away with it, though, since we have a very large number of such questions. – Michael Hampton May 9 '13 at 19:33

The smart-mass answer is that 5 people with 3k+ rep thought it should be closed.

The mod answer: I have no idea what they were thinking and have re-opened it.

I see no reason it should be closed. As I have no insight into their close reason I can only make vague assumptions as to why they voted the way they did. The question could be a bit more clear...

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    The abruptness and lack of transparency have turned me off StackExchange too many times. Thank you for being blunt. – rjt May 9 '13 at 19:27
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    @rjt - I'll pipe up. I voted to close (and migrate to Unix.SE, I believe) for the reasons Michael Hampton brought up in his answer. There was no clear indication your question was in a professional context. I know and thank your for not cluttering your question with unnecessary background but sometimes a little background is the difference between solving the problem the right way and solving the problem the wrong way. – user62491 May 14 '13 at 8:38
  • @kce, thank you for letting me know. I was not aware there was a vote to migrate. – rjt May 14 '13 at 21:08

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