I notice there are (at least) 3 different SE sites that a Linux-related question could get asked: here, StackOverflow or Ubuntu. There could be others too.

But where is best to ask my questions regarding Linux? I don't really know what the differences between Ubuntu, Unix and Linux are (I've only recently started using Linux), nor why they have dedicated SE sites...


1 Answer 1


There is a slight overlap between the sites, most so between U&L and AskUbuntu.

  • If your question is primarily about programming (not shell scripting) or if it requires specialist programming knowledge to solve, then use StackOverflow.

  • If your question is primarily about Ubuntu and if the issue is exclusive to Ubuntu (i.e., it would not apply to any other Linux distribution) or if it requires an Ubuntu specialist to solve, then use AskUbuntu.

  • Otherwise (or if you're unsure whether it's a specific Ubuntu issue), please feel free to ask here on U&L.

For example,

  • Questions about text-processing with sed and awk, how to use join or any other standard or common Unix command line tool, Unix file permissions, shell scripting in general, etc., are best asked here on U&L. We also take questions regarding the POSIX standard, which includes the system interfaces, which are C library functions. It depends on the framing of the question whether these are best asked here on U&L or on StackOverflow.
  • Questions about C code, C++ programming, using libraries in your own programs, implementation of programming algorithms in general, etc. are best asked on StackOverflow.
  • Questions about how to set up your Ubuntu system, services provided for Ubuntu by the company Canonical, or anything not related to the use or administration of any other Linux but Ubuntu, you may take to AskUbuntu.


See also the relevant help pages on each site:

  • There's Super User also. Linux is on-topic there too. Confusion Intensifies
    – Kulfy
    Commented May 30, 2020 at 5:57
  • 2
    @Kulfy There doesn't need to be any confusion. If you want your Linux question answered by people who also deal with Windows and more broad questions, then ask on SuperUser. If you want your Linux question seen by Unix-y people only, then ask here.
    – Kusalananda Mod
    Commented May 30, 2020 at 6:35
  • 1
    The basic point to learn is that Stack Exchange is not divided up by topic. It is divided up by audience. So the decision is whether one wants one's question read, and potentially answered, by programmers, by "power users", by Ubuntu users, by general Unix and Linux-based operating system users, or indeed by bioinformatics people. (-:
    – JdeBP
    Commented Jun 1, 2020 at 11:52
  • 2
    @Kulfy I think it would go like: Do you have computer? Yes: SU will accept, Let be somewhat specific: Are you running Unix-like or GNU/Linux operating system? Yes: U&L would work best. Let be more specific: Looking for technical support from Ubuntu? Yes: go for AU. Let be even more specific: Are you dealing with code? Yes: go to SO.
    – Pandya
    Commented Jun 10, 2020 at 6:23
  • @Pandya Need to design a processor from scratch? Yes: go to EE (actually don't, come to think about it)
    – pipe
    Commented Jun 10, 2020 at 7:33
  • 2
    @Pandya Do you have computer? Is it too old? Yes: Retrocomputing. Looking for Macintosh? Yes: Ask Different :)
    – Kulfy
    Commented Jun 11, 2020 at 7:40
  • @Kulfy Haha! :)
    – Pandya
    Commented Jun 11, 2020 at 18:12

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