In What process is running before I even get a prompt?, the OP describes a problem with their login shell, soliciting several answers containing troubleshooting suggestions, but no real solution. Then the OP was updated to say: "This issue has mysteriously resolved itself...I can't reproduce [the cause]."

So I flagged the question as too localized, but my flag was declined. Is such a question not too localized? Did the mod miss the edit? Should I have added a comment to the already-long comment thread explaining my flag?

1 Answer 1


Although the specific problem isn't reproduced, it seemed to me like the basic question and answers given could easily be useful to a future visitor. The answers give an overview of what's probably going on, and basic diagnostic steps which will apply to anyone regardless of the actual mystery.

So, I don't think it's necessarily too localized, and definitely didn't want to close it by moderator fiat. (If enough high rep users want to vote to close it despite my opinion, I'm happy to shrug and go along.)

  • Touché. However, I wonder how we determine how likely a question that was not solved for the OP is to be helpful to others. The particular question being discussed seems like an "obvious" case, but others may not be so relatable. I also wonder if answers which only provide troubleshooting steps can/should be distinguished from answers that give a specific solution, but alas, that's another question...
    – depquid
    Apr 26, 2013 at 12:41

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