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gettinghelp

Getting Help

Check the docs first

Take a look at the MinixFaq and the UsersGuide to see if your question has been answered. You should also check the Google Group archive.

Post to the MINIX 3 Google Group

There is an active Google group for discussion of MINIX 3, asking and answering questions, getting help, and other matters related to MINIX 3.

Anyone can read postings and archives by just going to the group's Website. However, to post a message, you have to register and log in. It is free and just takes a minute and we won't divulge your email address to anyone. The registration procedure is needed to keep automated spambots from posting to the group, a problem that we were having with the old USENET group.

Be Detailed and Clear

When asking for help, please give a detailed description of the problem. Tell us what command(s) you were running when you encountered the issue. If possible, please try to reproduce your issue against GIT trunk. It may have been fixed already. If you can pin down the problem to a small, reproducible test case, that would also be very helpful.

Please try to write clearly. Please write in complete sentences. Please use proper punctuation and grammar. Please use proper capitalization, and break your email into paragraphs. Please don't use textspeak abbreviations. If you put some care and thought into your email, you are more likely to get a useful response. If English is not your native language, just make your best attempt.

When you post your message, please include the following information:

  • A descriptive title
  • MINIX version (e.g., 3.2.4)
  • GIT commit (e.g., 9865aea)
  • The nature of any changes you've made to the MINIX sources (e.g., I modified PM…)
  • Package name/version, if relevant
  • Your hardware platform (or the virtual machine emulator, if relevant)
  • Description of the problem
  • A simple recipe to reproduce the problem
  • Expected Results - What you expected to happen
  • Actual Results - What actually happened
  • Any other relevant information. Err on the side of too much information, rather than too little

Please also see How to Report Bugs Effectively.

Netiquette

When you post a message to the group, you are sending it to hundreds or thousands of people. Just as in the real world, not all speech is appropriate in all places. There are things you can say to your drinking buddies in a bar that might not go over so well if said out loud in a public place, such as a school, store, or church. Over the course of several decades, certain conventions have developed as to what is considered polite behavior on newsgroups and what is considered rude and boorish. There are even semiofficial guidelines in RFC 1855 for what constitutes polite behavior.

However, if you are a newbie (newcomer), RFC 1855 may be a bit much. The following guides may be helpful to newbies:

Also worth noting is that the Internet is like an elephant: it never forgets. If you make a stupid, bigoted, or irresponsible posting at 18, count on all your future employers finding it when you are 40 by looking at the Wayback machine and other places.

gettinghelp.txt · Last modified: 2016/09/23 04:17 by arnhemcr