In unix.stackexchange.com, there're at least 6 7 questions (see below) about USB flash memories that become read-only. In superuser.com, there're many, and the user bwDraco wrote a "canonical" question and answer. Other questions are labeled as duplicate of that question. It was based on this meta question.

I think unix.stackexchange.com needs a similar solution, i.e.: (1) Give a summary of that question in superuser.com, and put the link to it. (2) Mark existing quetions as its duplicates. (It's beyond my privilege.)

Any idea? I've asked dwDraco for a comment, too.

The list of such questions I've found is here:

BTW there's one read-only MTD question (in fact another in stackoverflow.com.) I didn't know MTD, which seems Linux, and I thought it's similar to our FAQ, and suggested to have a look to our FAQ.

  • 2
    Good idea. The SuperUser post has some Windows-specific data that obviously shouldn't be included over here, though.
    – Wildcard
    Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 5:05
  • Sorry, I seem to have missed this discussion. I just noticed it today. As I explain in my answer, while posting an answer is a great idea, posting a link to the SU answer is not. Please don't do that.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Mar 11, 2017 at 14:29

2 Answers 2


While your idea makes sense, I am afraid the way you implemented it is very wrong:

  1. First of all, don't post a new question unless absolutely necessary. First check the existing ones. is one of them good enough to have your answer? Can one be edited slightly to make it fit the broad, general answer you want to post? If so, it is better to post your answer there instead of posting a whole new question. The whole idea is to keep things organized, so avoid posting something new unless it is needed.

  2. Don't say "this is a dummy question copied from elsewhere". Just ask a question. An actual question that is broad enough to cover the cases you are aiming at.

  3. Don't say anything in the question about its being special. It isn't, yet. Just write it in such a way that it can serve as a master post and then we can close others as duplicates of it. At most, you can leave a small note linking to this meta post, but no more than that and even that is not needed.

  4. Post an actual answer. Don't just link to the answer on SU. If you want to have the question answered here, it needs to be answered here!

  5. Since you will be copying information from somewhere else, make sure to provide attribution. Ideally, however, you will pick only the relevant bits from the other answer, tweak them a little as needed to be specific to *nix, add some extra *nix-specific information that might be missing from the other post and make a new answer. If you want to just copy and add nothing, it would be polite of you to mark the answer as community wiki. Both to allow easier editing and so that you don't get rep from just repeating someone else's work.

  • I think I'm in a right direction, even if it has some flaws. I understand you're kind to newbies, and your answer, which is really instructive and detailed, is absolutely correct in general. (Thanks!) Let me examine the problems of the current situation. (SU = superuser.com; USE = unix.stackexchange.com) Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:02
  • 1
    BTW I guess by "dupe target" you mean "the reference destination for duplicate questions." But the word "dupe" has the meanings related to deceit, so that expression should be avoided. (I was misled for days.) Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:02
  • 1. The repeated questions are not specific to Unix at all. (Not only hardware-wise, but they should also test it on Win or Mac.) One natural option is to migrate them to SU, but its not best, because (i) there continues to be users who seek an answer in USE. Then to allow them searching USE, we should keep the (repeated and reference) questions in USE, and (ii) if they were got deleted, housekeeping would be cumbersome each time; you have to locate the SU question, going back and forth between SU and USE, for the sake of migration. Simply marking them as duplicate is much easier. Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:02
  • 2. It's right that you shouldn't give a pair of the "canoncal" question and answer for each FAQ. That would destroy the benefits of stackexchange, which is probably the consequence of the system, such that those who wonder ask, and other reply. (Intervene least, and let it evolve spontaneously. «Lessez-faire», so to say.) OTOH a "canonical" Q&A is a summarized, imaginary (or fake) one. Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:03
  • 3. Although it will deviate from the general rule, my intention is to keep the answer minimal, by just being the pointer to the canonical answer in SU, and mention "it's not specific to Unix." You can add some extra information. I think it's what we have to compensate, by not migrating to SU. - remember that if we give another full-fledged answer, it'll be a fork, a split, or unnecessary segregation from SU; improvments in SU won't be reflected to USE. Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:03
  • 4. The repeated questions already have confused comments and answers, including accepted ones. So simply adding a canonical answer to an exsiting question does not immediately mean that the question and the answer will become a good reference one. (And the questions are unnecessaily lengthy in many cases; I don't feel like forcing those who have asked another repeated question to read them.) These are why I think bwDraco considered to take an exceptional course; and s/he first asked a meta question in SU. Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:04
  • 5. It's indeed possible to follow the conventional way for our FAQ. To that end, you have to examine all the 7 existing questions I mentioned above; add a canonical answer to the best suitable one; first comment to the rest as "possible duplicate"; wait some time; once it's mature enough, so that the answer has enough upvotes and it's clear the rest can be deemed duplicate, then fianlly flag them as duplicate; and close my question, too. Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:05
  • 6. If someone can take this burden, IMO extra burden, it's great. (Please declare so before your action.) Unlike SU, there's only seven questions in USE, being manageable. But sorry, don't count me in. (I've already spared some of my time.) 7 I can't come up with a solution better than my original one. As for making it a community wiki, I'll follow you. (Maybe a moderator wants to convert the question itself to a wiki.) Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 12:06
  • @teikakazura the main point here is that a link to something else is not an answer. In fact, it is the most common type of Not An Answer. So if you want to write something like this, great, but please write an actual answer. Oh, and sorry about dupe! That is a common term for duplicate in the Stack Exchange network and I hadn't considered that it might be confusing. Thanks for pointing it out.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 22:28
  • I understand what you mean, but what you cited - that meta issue indeed is rationale - is a link to an external source, while what I propose points to a real answer. It's an alternative to migration to SU; simply it's like a redirect / proxy (in ordinary sense, like delegate), so to say. / And I wonder if you perhaps agree with the disadvantage of forking? Assume you copied the SU answer, and wrote "copied from this SU answer. Check it since may have updates, because it is far more frequently viewed than the copy here" It woudln't make sense. Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 7:40
  • Having a "canonical" summary Q&A will anyway make an exception from the standard stackexchange method. So I think we shouldn't have both canonical Q&A altogether (then probably it's best migrate all to SU), or make a canonical question and a bare-bones pointer answer. / I think we're nearly boiling down. I believe in your experience, and maybe I'll respect your next answer. Thanks a lot for your vigilance. :) Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 7:40
  • @teikakazura each Stack Exchange site is independent of the others. None of these questions would be migrated to SU, they are on topic here. While I, personally, would love to see a system allowing the linking of questions between separate SE sites, such a system does not exist and, therefore, answering a question with a link to another site (even an SE site) is absolutely not an answer. Other SE sites are external resources. So, again, if you really want to do this, just copy the relevant bits of the SU answer and post them here. Then, provide a link back to the SU answer for attribution.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 14:36
  • 'Kay, I'm not convinced, but I follow you. Wait a bit. (Sorry for migration issue. I though I've seen many migrated instances in other stackexchage sites.) Thanks for discussion. Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 5:15
  • @teikakazura I didn't say migration is impossible. I said that we (and all other SE sites) don't migrate away things that are on topic.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 9:08
  • I posted a "real" answer. Commented May 6, 2017 at 7:42

I posted an answer.

Please upvote it. It seems necessary to mark other questions as duplicates of that reference question. Thanks for your attention.

  • 3
    Please don't do this! If you want to post a canonical answer, post an actual answer. Don't just give a link to some other site. I deleted your answer since it wasn't actually answering the question, it was only indicating where an answer might be found. While your suggestion here makes sense, you need to write an actual answer. So, you could use the answer on SU to write your own, for example.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Mar 11, 2017 at 14:17

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .