Ubuntu Forums FAQ

Here you can find answers to questions about how the board works. Use the links or search box below to find your way around.

Where do I post a new thread ?

The forum consist of several main sections for the Ubuntu Official Flavours Support that you may post in. In some section there are a number of subsections, also known as sub-forums.

If you are looking for support on a technical issue, please post in the New to Ubuntu section (if you are new) or in other appropriate sub-forum if you already know or have information about your specific issue. There are some specialised sub-forums in Ubuntu Specialised Support and Other Discussion and Support.

If you have a thread that is not to do with technical support, you should be able to find a suitable sub-forum in Ubuntu Community Discussions.

Please try to post in an appropriate subforum, as this will help keep the forums organised and will help others to help you, or to find your thread later to help themselves.

Do not cross-post. Cross-posting is the posting of the same question in different parts of the forum. This means: post only one thread per topic. Do not, if you have a problem with a particular issue, post one thread about it in New to Ubuntu, another thread about it in Desktop Environments, and yet another about it in General Help. And do not post a question to a thread started by another member and then start your own thread(s) on the same topic. Cross-posting bumps other people's threads down, dilutes support from users trying to help you, and is considered parasitic.

When in doubt, post one thread per problem and put in New to Ubuntu.

How do I make a new thread?

Go to the sub-forum that you want to post in (new to Ubuntu, for example), look for the orange New Thread button near the top left of the page, and click on it to start a new thread for your problem.

You'll then be able to create a thread title for your thread. Please pick one that actually gives an indication to others of what your thread is about. Avoid vague attention-seeking titles such as, "Please help! I'm pulling my hair out!", or "If this is the kind of problem Ubuntu is going to give me, I'm going back to Windows!", or "Help! I'm a noob. Urgent!"

If it's a sound problem, say it's a sound problem. If it's a CD burning problem, say it's a CD burning problem.

Once you have typed your thread title, you may click on the Check if Already Posted button and the forum will search for threads on a similar topic. Many questions similar to yours may have been asked and solved before. You can save yourself (and others) much time and energy by seeing if the answer might be out there for you. If you middle-click on one of the search results, the thread will open in a new browser tab for you, so feel free to see if any of them help. If they don't, continue to type your initial thread post.

In your thread's first post, please explain briefly your situation, what you've tried, and any other information that may be helpful to people who are not standing right behind you looking at your computer monitor.

How do I format my posts and messages ?

When posting messages you may wish to include some formatting such as bold text, italic text and underlined text.

Adding formatting to your post can be done in two ways:

  • Using clickable controls similar to those found in most word processors
  • Typing formatting commands in BB code

Clickable controls are available in the Standard and Enhanced WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editors. The difference between these is that the standard editor will show the BB code in your message and be processed when it is displayed. The enhanced WYSIWYG editor will show your message as it will be displayed while you are typing.

To use these, simply click the button, for example the B (bold) button and then type to get bold text. Click the button again to stop using that formatting. You can also highlight text that you have already typed then click the formatting button to format existing text.

BB code is a special set of codes similar to HTML that can be used in posts to the board. Please have a look at the Basic Guide to BBCode on the forums, the section below, or the BBCode Howto for detailed informations. To see the full list of BB code tags that can be used on the Ubuntu Forums site and additional examples of their use, click here.

Basic guide to BBCode

If your post includes long terminal output it is extremely helpful to use code tags.

Quoted portions of other posts can be put into a Quote box.

If you are using New Reply you can simply select the text you wish to have within a code box and use the # button on the reply editing toolbar.

If you are using Quick Reply you can still achieve the same result by typing [code] at the beginning and [/code] at the end.

Other useful forum markups are :

[quote]Quoted phrase[/quote] : wrap quote tags around text

[i]Italicize[/i] : Italicize

[b]Bold[/b] : Bold

[u]Underline[/u] : Underline

[s]Strike through[/s] : Struck through

[list][*]List item 1[*]List item 2[*]List item 3[/list] : Unordered list

  • List item 1
  • List item 2
  • List item 3

Replying to a Post

You will need to be logged in and have confrimed your email to be able to post and reply.

As a registered user you can go to a forum on a board where you have permission to view threads and leave replies. Some areas like the Archives are view only. The forums run a script that closes threads without activity for a year. You will not be able to reply to those. To reply you have a few options. You can click on the + Reply to Thread button and add a new post to the end of the thread. Alternatively, you can leave a quick reply in a quick editor box listed below the posts in the thread.

When using 'Quick Reply' you can choose to quote a particular post if you are replying to something someone wrote. You may need to click the quick reply button Reply to this Message Reply in a post to activate the quick reply box before you can type into it.

If you want to post replies to multiple posts you can select them by clicking the multi quote button Multi quote. This button will change to indicate that you've selected it. Clicking post reply will then bring you to the full editor with all the posts quoted.

Editing your Posts

Can I edit my posts?

If you have registered and are logged in, you will be able to edit you posts.

To edit your posts, click the Edit Post button by the particular post.

Once you've made your modifications, a note will appear to inform other users that you have edited your post.

If the edit time and date appear as a link you can click on this to see the differences between the original and edited versions, or between edits if there have been multiple edits.

Can others edit my posts?

Administrators and moderators may also edit your messages. If they do, there will usually leave a note telling other users that the post was modified.

Creating and Participating in Polls

You may notice that some threads on this forum also include a section where you can vote on an issue or question. These threads are called 'polls'.

How do I create a new poll?

When you post a new thread, you may also have the option to create a poll.

This allows you to ask a question and specify a number of possible responses. Other members will then be able to vote for the response they wish, and the results of the voting will be displayed in the thread.

An example poll might be:

What is your favorite color?

  • Red
  • Blue
  • Yellow
  • Green
  • Sky-blue
  • Pink with yellow spots

To create a poll when you post a new thread, simply click the 'Yes, post a poll with this thread' checkbox at the bottom of the page, and set the number of possible responses you want to include.

When you click the submit button, you will be taken to the poll creation page, where you can specify the question and the list of responses you want to include.

You may also want to specify a time limit for the poll, so that (for example) it stays open for voting for only a week.

How do I vote in a poll and view the results?

To vote in a poll, simply select which option you want to vote for, and click the 'Vote!' button. Sometime you can choose more than one option. You can see the current results for a poll before you vote by clicking the 'View Results' link. Voting in a poll is entirely optional. You may vote for any of the available options, or cast no vote at all.

Note whether or not a poll is a public poll. If it is, any votes you cast will be attributable to you.

Generally, once you have voted in a poll, you will not be able to change your vote later, so place your vote carefully!

Attachments and Images

How do I attach a file to a post?

To attach a file to your post, you need to be using the main 'New Post' or 'New Thread' page and not 'Quick Reply'. To use the main 'New Post' page, click the 'Post Reply' button in the relevant thread.

On this page, below the message box, you will find a button labelled 'Manage Attachments'. Clicking this button will open a new window for uploading attachments. You can upload an attachment either from your computer or from another URL by using the appropriate box on this page. Alternatively you can click the Attachment Icon to open this page.

To upload a file from your computer, click the 'Browse' button and locate the file. To upload a file from another URL, enter the full URL for the file in the second box on this page. Once you have completed one of the boxes, click 'Upload'.

Once the upload is completed the file name will appear below the input boxes in this window. You can then close the window to return to the new post screen.

What files types can I use? How large can attachments be?

In the attachment window you will find a list of the allowed file types and their maximum sizes. Files that are larger than these sizes will be rejected. There also is an overall quota limit of 5 files you can post in a reply.

How do I add an image to a post?

If you have uploaded an image as an attachment, you can click the arrow next to the 'Attachment Icon' and select it from the list. This will be inserted into your post and can be located where you want it displayed.

To include an image that is not uploaded as an attachment and is located on another website, you can do so by copying the full URL to the image, (not the page on which the image is located), and either pressing the 'Insert Image' icon or by typing [img] before the URL and [/img] after it, ensuring that you do not have any spaces before or after the URL of the image.

Smilies

What are smilies?

Smilies are icons that can be used in your posts to express emotions or feelings. You might wish to use these to show that you are happy, sad, joking, or embarrassed. For example, if you are telling a joke or being sarcastic you may wish to add a wink instead of writing 'this is a joke'.

The basic smilies are the same as what you would find on any instant messenger system. They are made up of a combination of characters which often show the basis of the resulting image. For example, :) is converted to a smiley face and :( to a sad face or frown. Tilt your head to the left to see this in action as these consist of two eyes and a mouth either smiling or frowning.

How do I add smilies?

Some smilies can be accessed from the 'New Post' or 'New Thread' pages Clicking them will automatically insert them into your message. You can also type the character combinations for the smilies directly. A full list of the smilies and their character combinations used on this forum can be found here.

On occasions, you may want to prevent the text in your message being converted into smilies. Then use the [noparse]no smilies here[/noparse] BBCode tags around that portion of text, see here.

Message Icons and Thread Prefixes

What are message icons?

Message Icons, also known as Post Icons, are small icons that appear in the title of your post. If your post is the first in a thread, then they also display in the thread listings. They can be found below the message box on the 'New Post' and 'New Thread' pages. Simply select the icon that you wish to use and this will be displayed before your thread title.

What are thread prefixes?

Thread Prefixes can be used to further identify your thread as containing a particular content in the forum. You will see a box before the title box which contains a menu with the available prefixes for you to choose from.

Moderators, Super Moderators and Administrators

What are Moderators, Super Moderators and Administrators?

Global Moderators oversee the forums. They have the ability to edit and delete posts, move threads, and perform other actions such as giving infractions. The process to become a moderator is detailed in the Team Nomination wiki page. Global Ubuntu Forms Moderators requirements are detailed in the Moderator wiki page.

Some specifc sub-forums (Ubuntu Weekly newsletter, LoCos) have dedicated Moderators.

Super Moderators is a set of about 3 persons from the Moderator group being mentored by the Forum Council into becoming future Forum Council members and Forums Administrators. Super Moderators requirements are detailed in the SupeModerator wiki page.

Administrators are Forums Council Members and have access to members accounts, the forums structure etc. The Forums Council is presented in the ForumCouncil wiki page.

Search FAQ

Select this option if you would like your search to look in the text of FAQ items as well as their titles.

Select an option here to specify how you would like your search query to be treated. 'Any words' will return the most numerous but possibly least relevant results, while 'Complete phrase' will return only results that contain exactly what you are searching for.