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I posted a question a month ago and from reading other questions and responses I can see two highly rated contributors that could probably answer my question in a heartbeat -- but there seems no mechanism on the site to send them a direct message, or send them a link to the question, etc. It seems like I'm relying on a bit of random timing added to a hit & miss algorithm.

So - are there any steps I can take to get my question in front of the Right(tm) people?

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You should make sure you have good tags on the question. Tags should reflect what the question is about, because answerers follow tags that interest them in order to find questions to answer. In your case, the question's tags seem fine.

Our help page What should I do if no one answers my question? suggests you should edit your question to add more details. This also brings it back to the home page so that more people will see it. Some things you may want to add are configuration files and logs of things you have tried that didn't work.

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Direct communication with other users isn't a big part of ServerFault or any other SE site, the focus is on questions and answers.

What you might be able to do, is to ping them in a comment. If there is a related question that the person you want to contact has commented on, you can add a comment with @username and the person will be notified of it.

A couple caveats:

  • Don't do this a lot, don't try to ping people for every question you ask.
  • Don't repeatedly ping the same person, if they don't respond, don't keep trying.
  • This isn't really what comments are meant for, so if you do it, your comment might be removed. If that happens, don't re-post it.
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    Please don't do this - this is not what the ping system is meant for and I don't like gaming the system in that way. Part of why I like that there is no way to notify users you want to answer your questions about them is that this makes ignoring a question an easy and fully neutral option - no one knows if you even read it, but if you get pinged about it then even to ignore it conveys a message to the poster of the question, which creates a certain amount of pressure. – Sven Aug 4 at 17:04
  • Well - the sites are doing fine without me, so I guess they know what they're doing. I'll just go back where I came from. – Dbdata Aug 4 at 17:25

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