I posted the following question: https://serverfault.com/questions/907784/some-systems-unable-to-connect-to-my-ntpsec-server

Initially I did not indicate that the connection - while at my home - is a business connection, as I'm a consultant. As well, the question is clearly within scope as it pertains to how business systems I manage are able to communicate with a server on a business connection. The Moderator seems way too aggressive in this decision - and frankly I don't think he even bothered to read past the first sentence. I've read https://serverfault.com/help/on-topic - My question is about the matters listed as within scope, and it is not about matters listed as not within scope. The moderator's tone and delivery is awfully aggressive/hostile: "Deleting and reposting does not magically make your question on topic. You are still using a hobbyist system on a home network. Do not attempt to post blatantly off-topic questions again". That comment alone suggests that the moderator simply didn't bother reading the new posting. It may be a "hobbyist system" (debateable, just because something is used by hobbyists doesn't preclude its use in business, that's patently obvious), and the "home network" is being used in service to my business, which again, falls within scope.

But beyond all that, clearly if you read the question, this is not a 'hobbyist' question. I'm not asking why my PC has poor latency playing PUBG or some such non-business silliness. I'm using business linux servers I manage in numerous locations around the US, I've run non-trivial diagnostics. I'm running a public, listed stratum-one timeserver, which is a core internet service. If I wanted to deceive my way into getting some help - as the moderator seems to suggest - I could just as easily have reposted that the server is on a business connection (which, in fact, it is), and not stated what the hardware was (which is irrelevant to the content of the question).

I do not see my question as being out of scope. If the "mitigating" facts that I provided still don't meet muster, then I'll happily look for a more welcoming place to ask a serious technical question.

I'm curious, if a University sysadmin posted a networking question on serverfault, would it be booted as well, since a University is not a business? On that extremely narrow interpretation, I can pull up dozens and dozens of questions from University admins that should be deleted.

This may or may not matter, but I'm a Unix/Linux systems administrator, have earned my living as such continuously since 1994, I've managed countless diverse systems and services since then, some large, some small, always in a professional capacity. I'm on-call 24x7x365, today, this year, last year, and with only a couple of extremely brief vacations, that's been the status quo since 1994. I'm asking my question in that capacity.

  • 1
    Deleting your original closed question and reposting it as a new one is not the the desired way to get it answered. As the original close reason stated, "If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question". - Questions that are edited within five days of being put on hold are automatically added to a reopening queue for community review.
    – HBruijn
    Apr 16, 2018 at 8:24
  • I did not simply repost the question as a new one. I updated it in detail to describe the use case.
    – anastrophe
    Apr 16, 2018 at 15:23

1 Answer 1


HBruijn already explained why the second question has been deleted.

Both questions are off-topic on SF because they 100% deal with consumer workstations or networking. Regardless of how you use it, you use a residential consumer internet connection in your home and on top of that, you want to connect to a RasPi, which we would consider off-topic even in a company network and usually close questions regarding it with the following reason:

Questions should demonstrate reasonable business information technology management practices. Questions that relate to unsupported hardware or software platforms or unmaintained environments may not be suitable for Server Fault - see the help center.

We don't consider to be using an RPi as actually reasonable for any business purpose due to its severe shortcomings in hardware design and I just cannot see why anyone would want to use this kind of hardware in a residential network to provide "professional services" instead of just firing up a 5$ DO instance that does the same job better.

Lastly, as a university is in the business of research and education (even as a nonprofit), this is clearly on-topic. Incidentally, I am a full time university sysadmin and I even use RPis at work, but they are for completely non-critical tasks and if I had ever any questions regarding them, I would ask at SuperUser, Unix&Linux or rpi.se.

  • As I replied to HBruijn, I did not simply repost the question, I edited it to clearly describe in detail that this is being used within scope.
    – anastrophe
    Apr 16, 2018 at 15:24
  • It is not within scope, as you are in a home network. Nothing can make it topical.
    – Sven
    Apr 16, 2018 at 15:25
  • I read discussion here over use of the RPi. The RPi is running Debian, this is a network question unrelated to being on a "consumer" connection or "home" network. Does a $5 DO instance have a hardware GPS with antenna? Good luck running a Stratum One timeserver on DO. There are many questions here on SF that are just beginner questions, but because they ask their question without providing details, they get a pass. The hostile attitude of the moderator is an issue. Funnily enough, my RPi on "home" network is more reliable than some "business" hosting providers I've dealt with.
    – anastrophe
    Apr 16, 2018 at 15:35
  • Also "they 100% deal with consumer workstations or networking" is false. Please don't misrepresent my question. I think it's unreasonable that the 'rules' are worded in such a vague way that Universities are considered to be in "business", but an actual business can be rejected. But - I'll let it go at this point. There's a certain elitist mentality here that is very off-putting. If you'd read past the words "Raspberry Pi" in my question, you'd see that it's an interesting issue - but I'm wasting my breath. Thanks for the civil reply, at the very least - unlike the moderator.
    – anastrophe
    Apr 16, 2018 at 15:52

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