In theory, the tag is about

a computer program running to serve the requests of other programs or a physical computer dedicated to running one or more such services.

The first meaning (a computer program) is a useful one: there are many questions about server programs. The second meaning (a computer dedicated to running server programs) is not: hardly any question is specifically about server computers. In practice, the tag is mostly used to mean “the computer where I'm having this problem doesn't have a console”, which is just as useless information as the color of the shirt that the asker is wearing.

For the first, useful meaning, is fairly similar. So there's no use in trying to enforce the meaning of .

Stack Overflow got rid of server multiple times, as did Server Fault and Super User.

Let's just get rid of .

Trogdor served on a plate

  • 6
    +1 for Trogdor bagel. Oh and killing off server sounds good too.
    – Caleb
    Jul 29, 2014 at 7:16
  • If we don't want to talk about the physical device, we should also modify the description of unix.stackexchange.com/tags/webserver/info and the like.
    – lgeorget
    Jul 29, 2014 at 10:40
  • 1
    @lgeorget I've edited the description of webserver and file-server. Jul 29, 2014 at 12:05
  • And I copied it to AU.
    – Braiam
    Jul 29, 2014 at 14:34
  • I suggest the addition of creme cheese mixed with red and yellow food colorings. For both enhanced flavor and burnination abilities.
    – derobert
    Aug 2, 2014 at 3:23
  • For now lets try the unanswered list which could need other kinds of actions (VtC, Vote up/down, answering, etc.)
    – Braiam
    Oct 9, 2014 at 22:28

1 Answer 1


[edit: see my comment, I now agree with burnination, though I think my reasons are different.]

Daemons are background programs, that run without direct user interaction.

Many servers are daemons, but there are certainly servers that aren't. Like, say, an X server. Or your game set up to accept network players. Or your VoIP software. Or…

There are also plenty of daemons that aren't servers. Cron, for example.

And are systemd socket-activated servers daemons? Or inetd servers? I think not, as they aren't background programs that sit around running, waiting for something to do.

Not to mention expertise in daemons is things like setting them up to run via init scripts, unit files, or the like; sequencing them to start in the correct order; supervising them to make sure they stay running; etc. Expertise in servers is things like picking appropriate addresses and ports; securing them from attackers; opening holes in firewalls to let connections through; etc. Those are fairly different.

That said, we could certainly banish the non-listen(2) meaning of server.

  • 1
    Securing from attackers is security, there isn't specific expertise in securing servers as opposed to securing other kinds of programs. (There is specific security in securing specific programs, e.g. security apache.) Opening holes in firewalls is firewall regardless of whether you're running the server and want to let clients through or you're running the client and want to let it talk to servers. Picking addresses and ports seems a very weak topic and is networking ip anyway. I just don't see expertise in “servers”. Aug 2, 2014 at 8:42
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    (cont.) I don't really see expertise in daemons either, but they're a clear search topic. But servers? What's specific to servers? And do you really believe we can enforce that “server” means “server process” and not “server computer”? Aug 2, 2014 at 8:44
  • @Gilles That may well be... When I looked at the tag before, I saw a few that I wasn't sure what to tag other than server. I suggest start working on the retag, and let's see if we're left with anything that really appears to be just about socket servers (or even machines sitting in server rooms) in general. Certainly the ones that are (e.g.,) some-server and server (only because some-server is a server) can be some-server only. If that leaves none left, then... tag burninated?
    – derobert
    Aug 6, 2014 at 11:39
  • Do you think we still need server? I see it used only to mean “I'm using a server somewhere”, not to reflect the topic of the question. Can we burninate now? Oct 9, 2014 at 22:23
  • @Gilles no idea, but we're nowhere near close to getting rid of all the server-tagged questions. Still see 253 here. Those need retagging...
    – derobert
    Oct 14, 2014 at 17:05
  • Most server questions simply don't need the tag. Do you think there are still questions that need specific attention such as retagging or closing specifically because they're tagged server? If not we can ask SE to delete the tag from the database. Oct 14, 2014 at 17:28
  • @Gilles I looked at a bunch of questions tagged server. There are a few where it'd be useful... but there is so much noise it's hopeless. It'd take months to go through it, and eternal vigilance to prevent new mistagged questions. We can always come up with a less-generic tag... So I agree with you now: burninate.
    – derobert
    Oct 22, 2014 at 16:05

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