More IRC tips

May 3, 2007

In response to Aaron’s post about using IRC, I have a more tips about asking for help on IRC.

* Be polite- 99.9% of us are volunteers and cursing because nobody is answering a question is frustrating and makes us not want to help. Its not a requirement that we help you, we do it for the good of our soul, to give back, etc. At the very least, be polite.
* Use the appropriate channel. This goes along avoid flybys that Aaron said. We have many channel for lots of things: Kubuntu, Ubuntu Development, Mozilla Team, Desktop Effects (Beryl + Compiz people), Spanish, even channels for LoCos. Asking your question in the right place will help you get responses faster. This link may help
* Stay on topic – Good grief, nothing is more frustrating to see activity in a channel that is not related to the topic of the channel. For example, the topic for Kubuntu starts as “Kubuntu Support Channel”. The chatter channel is #kubuntu-offtopic where everything is on topic. I run Irssi and my screen tells me when a new message is show in the channel. Sometimes, I will toggle between development and support channel and it makes people want to help less when the channel is full of information about the latest Nvidia card or YouTube video exchanges or things not on topic.
* Know your system – Please know what release you are on and your hardware. Just for reference, use uname -a to learn about your system (kernel included), lsb_release -a to learn about your release (Feisty, Edgy etc), and lshw to learn about your hardware. lspci is another good command. We can help fix your wireless if we know what card you have.

Remember to say please and thank you as well. 🙂

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