Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: Read Me First

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    Read Me First

    Since the Tutorials Forum was being flooded with Stickies (thanks to myself, indeed), I decided to group all of them in one single thread. This is your ultimate Sticky-source for the Tutorials Forum! Props go to the people who wrote the Stickies: Pwaring, er0k, Und3ertak3r, souleman and VictorKaum!

    Asking smart questions - Pwaring

    Just to briefly introduce this article before I start; I've written this because I am, quite simply, sick and tired of stupid questions being asked on AntiOnline by people who can't be bothered to think for themselves before starting a thread. If you're going to ask a question, make sure you do it the right way - follow the principles in this guide and you shouldn't go far wrong. I've put a lot of time and effort into writing this tutorial, but if it stops just one stupid question it will be worth it.

    If I've made any mistakes (particulary typos), please feel free to point them out, either post them in the thread or PM me. I won't be able to edit this post after 24 hours because of the time limit imposed by the forums, but I will update it as necessary and re-post it if I make any major modifications. You'll be able to get the tutorial as a text file from my website: <>. Again, I'll let everyone know if this changes.

    A quick note about political correctness, you'll see me using male pronouns (he, his etc.) throughout most of this tutorial, because I can't be bothered writing out he/she, his/hers every time. I'll alternate between tutorials though so that everyone's happy.

    I drew inspiration for this article from Eric S. Raymond's article: How to ask questions the smart way ( However, it's by no means a copy (I want to point this out before anyone accuses me of doing a quick copy/paste - although if you view the two guides you'll see that they are distinctly different), in fact I spent nearly 3 hours writing this last night. I used Eric's article mainly to see how to start and layout my tutorial, since they are usually the two areas that I have trouble with when writing - once I've started, I can continue writing for ages, it's just the first few paragraphs that I find difficult.

    Enough talk, on with the show!

    Asking smart questions


    On public discussion forums such as AntiOnline, the response that you receive to your question depends heavily on how you ask it in the first place. Set the tone right, and people will be glad to help you, but forget one rule of etiquette and you can expect to be publically ridiculed and flamed by more senior members. This guide will teach you how to avoid the latter types of questions and get the answers you seek, without treading on anyone's toes in the process.

    This guide will be biased towards asking questions on AntiOnline, because that's where I'm posting it and where I expect it to be read. However, the guiding principles covered in this guide can be applied to asking questions almost anywhere, whether on Usenet, other internet forums or indeed real life.

    First and foremost, you should remember that most of the active members on AntiOnline like to answer difficult questions. Asking such questions gives us the opportunity to strech our minds to the full and temporarily relieve the boredoms of everyday life, whether it be our job, college or unemployment. And, strange though it may sound, a lot of us actually get an adrenalin rush from applying our minds to a problem to find a solution. It's a learning experience for everyone.

    However, newbies are often afraid of asking questions because they fear a knee jerk reaction from the established community and the backlash that follows. Whilst I can see where this reputation comes from, it's not a true picture of the people on AntiOnline. Belive me, most of us are more than willing to answer your questions, but we've become so used to stupid queries that we can seem somewhat hostile to those who don't know the situation.

    What we are, without any reservations, is hostile towards anyone who is unwilling to think for themselves before asking a question. Those people who just can't be bothered to try and find the answer from basic sources that are available to everyone or who ask questions that have been answered time and time before, will be labelled as 'stupid newbies', 'losers/lusers' and other derogatory names. We make no apologies for this, if you can't be bothered to check the most basic sources and think through the simplest ideas for yourself then we are not prepared to help you. Your questions waste our time that could be spent helping someone who deserves support more than you.

    The most important thing that you must remember is that pratically everyone on AntiOnline is a volunteer. We don't get paid to help you, we don't ask for much in return and it costs nothing other than your time to ask us a question. Keep this in mind and perhaps you'll understand why we get so angry if you ask a stupid question. Hundreds of volunteers around the world have taken some of their precious spare time in order to read your question. Time that you've now wasted. Time that can never be regained. Time that many people will be very, very angry to have wasted on you and your stupid question.

    You may think that the attitude taken so far portrays the AntiOnline community as a bunch of arrogant, obnoxious and condesending group of people who look down on others who are often making their first steps into the realm of computers and the internet. I can assure you that the vast majority of us do not fit into those categories. We're not asking you to grovel at our feet every time you ask a question (though it would help to boost our egos a bit), nor are we asking you to shower us with gifts (although it would be nice once in a while...). We'd like nothing more than to help you on your way and even join us if you wish, but if, and only if, you are prepared to think for yourself before asking questions.

    If you do decide to ask for help from the AntiOnline community, make sure you're not one of the losers who gets flamed on first sight for posting a stupid question. The fact that you're reading this guide shows that you are at least willing to learn how to do things the right way. Follow the guidelines where you can, feel free to improvise where necessary and you'll find asking questions easier and your answers relevant and fulfilling.

    Before you ask

    Before you ask any question, there are a numver of avenues that you must first explore if you do not wished to be flamed at first sight. Don't worry, nothing here is particulary taxing, but it's far more productive for all concerned if you can find your answer before you even ask the question. Just think about it for a moment, you find what you're looking for and we don't have any time helping you out which can instead be spent on someone with a much more complex query that can't be answered through a simple reference point.

    The first thing that you absolutely must do is read the manual for whatever you're having trouble with. Believe me, if the answer you seek is in the manual and you still ask the question then you will be told, in no uncertain terms, to RTFM (Read the F'ing Manual). If someone tells you to do this, chances are that the exact answer that you are looking for has been covered in the manual, in which case you should humbly apologise and go and look up the answer yourself. The manual is there for a reason, so use it and all those trees won't have died for nothing.

    The smaller cousin of RTFM that I have been seeing more and more of lately is STFW (Search the F'ing Web). So do this before you ask your question and see if you can't find an answer straight away. It's usually a good idea to use Google, since that's what most of us will use and we'll direct you there if that is where your answer is to be found anyway. Make sure you try advanced searches as well, and be specific - don't type "linux" into Google and expect to find out information about Canon BCJ-210 printer drivers for that operating system.

    Why do we tell you to STFW if you haven't already? Because the exact question you are thinking of has probably already been asked and answered before. Find it and your problem is solved. I remember someone on AntiOnline asking recently about where they could find BackOrfice 2000 for download (supposedly for research purposes). I typed in "back orfice" at Google and the first five results all took me to places where I could either directly download or find out where to download the software. This took me all of ten seconds, but the person who asked the question didn't seem to want to put in this tiny amount of effort to find what they are looking for.

    A final note on searching the web - don't expect to be given exact URLs for what you're looking for. Often, if we can find the answer to your question with a quick search, we will direct you to the Google homepage and not to the specific search result. This fulfils two purposes; firstly, it punishes you for not bothering to look there in the first place and secondly, it forces you to do some work for yourself, hopefully showing both you and others that simple answers will not be handed to you on a silver plate.

    The next thing that you should do is check the FAQs for whatever you are having trouble with. FAQ documents are lists of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). I'd say at least 70%, if not more, of questions asked about specific products could be answered by reading the FAQs - which is why people got so sick of answering these questions and created the FAQs in the first place. One example of this (which is by no means unique), is one of the Perl FAQs. *The* most frequently asked question is "how do I change the file extension on a group of files using Perl?". As such, it is prominently placed at the start of the FAQ document, with a comprehensive answer and code snippet that does exactly what you asked. Yet it remains the most frequently asked question because people don't bother to read the FAQs!

    Faqts is an excellent place to start looking for FAQ documents, just search for what you're having problems with and it will probably find a long list of FAQs, one of which may answer your question. Failing that, check out the official homepage for whatever's causing you bother, as they'll probably have an FAQ document. As mentioned before, people will get really angry if you ask a question that's already been answered numerous times before and covered in the FAQ, so make sure you check it out first before asking any questions. Even if the FAQ does not address your exact question, it may give you enough pointers to find the answer yourself.

    Another option that you can explore is asking a skilled friend to help you. However, that person will expect you to have read all the documentation (manual, FAQs etc.) and looked for an answer on Google before helping you out. Otherwise, you're just wasting his time as much as you'd waste ours if you posted your question on AntiOnline. The great thing about a skilled friend is that you can explain your problem to him in person, whereas it may be more difficult to put your problem into words for us to read. Just make sure that you don't test your friend's patience with endless stupid questions and certainly don't assume that it's his fault that the problem can't be fixed or that your troubles are down to him in the first place (I get this all the time - when anyone's computer breaks down it's my fault and I have to try and fix it - even if I've never seen the computer before in my life!).

    When you ask

    If you have read all the documentation, searched the web etc. and still can't find a satisfactory answer, now's the time to post your question on AntiOnline. The most important thing that you must remember is that you are in no way entitled to an answer, as I mentioned before we are all volunteers - we don't get paid to answer your questions and we are not obliged to do so or give you any reason as to why. Those of you who think you somehow deserve an answer will be met by either a stony silence or a (potentially rude or witty) retort. If you do deserve an answer then you will get one, assuming an answer is possible.

    Make sure that you mention that you have already checked the documentation, searched the web etc., otherwise some people will think that you are just bone idle and will ignore or flame you. Something along the lines of "I've checked the manual and the FAQs, plus I tried various searches on Google, but to no avail" should be sufficient to tell others that you've tried all other avenues and are now throwing down the gauntlet to the AntiOnline community.

    One thing that you absolutely must do when you post your question is make sure that it is placed in the correct forum. On AntiOnline, there are specialist forums for almost everything to do with computing. If you have a specific technical problem, post it in one of those, e.g. *nix Security. On the other hand, if you need help with a general problem (e.g. your computer isn't passing the POST test), then feel free to ask your question in the Newbie Questions forum. Whatever you do, don't post your question in here, the tutorials forum (unless you have a problem with a particular aspect of a tutorial). I will personally seek out, redirect and flame anyone who posts non-tutorial questions in this forum, so be warned in advance. Other members will probably also get annoyed if you start asking technical questions in a forum that's intended for general chat or tutorials.

    Never cross-post your question to dozens of forums. I've seen this done a few times recently on AntiOnline, one member posted the same question three times to three separate forums, even after some of us had given exact answers to what he was asking about. Even if your question has not been answered, don't post it to other forums as well, you just add to the noise and will be ignored. If you realise that you've posted to the wrong forum by accident, ask the moderator of the forum politely (or the admin if no moderator exists) if he will move the thread, otherwise post a short apology and start another thread in the correct forum.

    Another mistake that you should never make when asking a question is to send the question by private message and/or email to someone who you are not familiar with and who is not familiar with you. It's a bit of a shock to some people if they open their inbox only to find a lengthy technical query from a complete stranger. I don't mind too much if you want to ask a question of me this way (in case you're worried about a stream of abuse if you venture into the forums), but other people might not react in this way so just be polite and don't use private mail unless you know who you're talking to.

    Another reason for not asking questions via private mail is that your question (and any answer you may or may not receive) will not be seen by anyone else. This has a number of implications; firstly, your question is not reaching a wide target audience. The more people who see your question, the more chance you have of someone coming along who can help you; but this is not an excuse to post to every mailing list you can get your hands on!

    Secondly, there may well be someone with a similiar question to yours who also wants help. By posting in a public forum, they too will be able to benefit from the advice and help that you are given. Instead of work being duplicated, it is instead shared, which is much more effective in terms of time for everyone.

    Spelling, punctuation and grammar

    I don't want to end up sounding like one of my English teachers, who spent two years teaching us basic rules of spelling, punctuation and grammar, but failing to remember these rules when asking your question will make you sound like an uneducated moron. I can't stand it when people fail to use even the most basic punctuation (sentences end will full stops and begin with capital letters) in their posts; it just shows complete and utter laziness on their part. If you can't be bothered to check your punctuation before posting, then I can't be bothered to answer your question; it's as simple as that.

    Whatever you do, never *ever* type in ALL CAPS. It makes you sound like you are shouting. Of course, use capitals where necessary, e.g. PHP, ASP etc., but don't capitialise more than four or five words in a row without exceptionally good reason. In a similar vein, don't type in all lowercase either, it's extremely annoying. Remember that the letter 'I' on its own is always capitialised, there are no exceptions to this rule in the English language. Typing in proper mixed case (as opposed to all upper or lower case) is actually helpful because humans look for patterns of letters to form words, which allows us to read more easily, and we cannot do this if you type all in one case.

    It's not at all cool to talk in l337 sp34k (elite speak), as some people like to do. Substituting numbers for letters and spelling things by the way they sound rather than the way they're written makes it far harder for us to read your question. It also makes you look extremely immature and almost guarantees that someone will flame you for being a lamer. Oh, and one really big bug point for me, 'a lot' is two separate words. There is no such word as 'alot' (perhaps I'm being a bit pedantic here, but I'm sick and tired of people spelling this incorrectly all the time) and 'your' is a possesive pronoun, it is not short for 'you are' (that would be 'you're' instead).

    Having ranted on about the fundamental rules of the English language, don't be put off asking a question just because you haven't written a bestseller. If you trip up once or twice, that's perfectly fine, the only thing that annoys me are people who clearly can't be bothered to even attempt to follow the rules of punctuation and grammar. Don't worry if English isn't your first language, people will appreciate this and cut you some slack to compensate. You probably write better English than some people who use it as their first language (I know Negative can constantly pull me up on various mistakes if he wants to).

    Use meaningful names for your threads

    If you're going to ask a question on AntiOnline, make sure that you choose a suitable title that briefly describes your problem. Most of us don't spend every waking hour surfing the internet, so we scan pages very quickly and see if anything catches our eye. If you start a thread about whether or not you should upgrade from FAT32 to NTFS partitions with the title 'Help!', you'll get little if no help. However, if you choose a more appropriate title, e.g. 'FAT32 vs NTFS - which should I use?', you will (hopefully) catch the attention of those people who have expertise in that area and they will be able to help you.

    Be informative about your problem

    Vagueness will make it much harder for us to help you. Provide as much information as possible when asking your question, for example if you having problems with Outlook Express (as many people do), tell us what version of Windows, Internet Explorer and, most importantly, Outlook Express you are running. Have you installed the latest security patches (either way this could be the source of the problem) etc. All this is information that we need to know in order to help you if we can. If you don't provide enough information, you'll be asked for it anyway, so provide it in the first place and you'll make everyone's life easier.

    If you have performed any diagnostic tests whilst trying to solve your problem, let us know - you may be closer to an answer than you think. Any relevant stack dumps, server logs etc. should either be enclosed with your post or linked to on an external website. Information like this can be vital for us to figure out exactly what is wrong, especially because logs tend to be platform independent (i.e. a log for Apache on Unix tends to be the same as that on a Win32 platform).

    However, you must also be as precise as possible in your question. Surplus information is almost as bad as scarcity. You need to tell us what the exact problem is, as closely as possible. We may be able to help you if you tie down your problem to a particular piece of software that is playing up, but if you give us too much information it may be difficult to analyse what the problem exactly is - and we can't fix your entire system for you.

    Basic courtesy

    One thing that you must never do is ask people to reply by private email. First of all, this makes it seem to everyone that you don't have the time for the rest of the community because you can't be bothered to check back and see if anyone has replied. Besides, there is no excuse for this anyway because AntiOnline allows you to subscribe to threads, and you will be e-mailed when anyone replies to your message.

    If you ask for a private reply, you are denying the community the opportunity to see the answer to your question. Other people who may have a similiar question will have to ask again because you were too selfish to share the assistance you received with the community. On the other hand, if someone helps you out on the forums then that answer stays there, for both you and other people to refer to, hopefully solving other people's problems and reducing the amount of duplicate questions that are posted.

    Do not, under any circumstances, post a homework question and expect us to write a model answer for you. Your homework is yours to do, if we do it for you there is no learning experience on your part and the whole point of setting the work is wasted. Asking us to do your homework show laziness on your part and we can tell quite easily when you are trying to trick us into doing your work for you. Of course, this doesn't mean that we won't help you with your homework, quite the contary in fact. If you need us to fill in some questionnaires for a research project, or you are stuck on a problem question, then most people will happily help you out, so long as you're prepared to do the rest of the work yourself.

    A small point needs to be made on the idea of marking posts as 'urgent'. An answer may be urgent for you, but we aren't in any rush to answer your question. We might need time to think about the answer or we might not have time to answer your question immediately. Marking it as 'urgent' just makes it look as if you don't have time for the community - you want an answer fast and then get out. Tough. You'll receive a reply if and when someone has found an answer and is willing to share it with you, and not before.

    The absolute rule that you must remember though is to be courteous at all times. Even if you ask a stupid question, you will escape at least some flak if you are polite about it. Say please when you ask a question, and people will be more likey to answer it. "Thanks in advance" is a phrase that's good to use (often abbreviated to TIA) because it shows that you appreciate people helping you out even before they have actually done so. It also implies that you will be returning to see if anyone has managed to find a solution to your problem, and that we are not going to be wasting our time helping someone who will never see the help we give them.

    When your question has been answered

    So, you've researched everything, decided to ask your question and got a helpful answer. Great! Is that the end of the process though? No, of course it's not. It is essential that you return to the place where you asked the question and clear everything up. A quick note to say "thanks for your help everyone, the problem turned out to be down to..." etc. is better than nothing. This lets everyone know that you solved the problem and that you appreciated their help. Although you don't *have* to do this, it will display your courtesy and consideration for others, and make it more likely that people will answer any further questions you have in future.

    The end (for now)

    That's all folks, although I'm open to any suggestions as to how I can improve this guide/tutorial - shoot me an email or PM, or post your ideas in this thread if you've got anything say,all comments are appreciated. I suppose I should take my own advice and say "thanks in advance" as well


    An AntiOnline Tutorial - The way it should be - er0k

    Alright, lately alot of AO newbs have been posting tutorials that

    1. aren't tutorials at all

    2. are copied from another site or another location and aren't there own

    3. Are incredibly short and uniformative

    4. are just a list full of links

    5. Aren't even computer related, I saw some tutorial that was gratified that had just like 50 links to the home page of news companies in other countries

    6. Just aren' what AO expects when you write a tutorial.

    This tutorial explains what you all that have recently registered (i.e. mainly sometime this past winter and onward) need to expect when : writing tutorials, reading tutorials, assigning points to tutorials.

    First off I will start with Writing tutorials.

    Writing Tutorials

    0. Make sure you read JP's post that says READ ME FIRST ! This means read it before you post anything in here.

    1.A common misconception is that you have to be a master of the subject you are wanting to write a tutorial over. Wrong.

    The very best way in my opinion, and i have written well over 50, (20 at AO, some aren't really within the boundaries of AO's standards others aren't very good) is to research what you want to write a tutorial on, open up a text editor (In linux/unix i prefer pico, in windows Notepad works fine) and just start writing

    2. Try to make the tutorial entertaining. This will keep the user reading it informed, yet with more attention.

    3. Use a damned spell checker if you can find one. I use kword for that, but occasionally forget.

    4. Make sure the tutorial is of reasonable length.

    5. DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES POST SOMETHING THAT YOU DID NOT WRITE ON YOUR OWN ACCORD WITH YOUR OWN BRAIN (i.e. dont copy a tutorial or information somewhere else, thats illegal)

    6. Make a nice title for the tutorial so that

    A} more people will want to read it

    B} when they open it they wont be appalled that it is completely unrelated to its topic

    C} there is no C

    7. Don't Put the word "Newbie" in everyone of your damned tutorials, i see this everyday. By reading it we realize its for beginners (hopefully)

    8. Dont write the tutorial just for antipoints, but if you do, expect to get the antipoints you deserve. Tutorials arent like other posts.

    9. Do not post a tutorial on various im throwing this in here to see if anyone actually reads this if so respond subjects that aren't related to anything to do with computers in regards to : software, hardware, firmware, networking, programming concepts, etc


    you get the point there ^
    this includes posting a damned tutorial that is full of links and nothing else.

    and finally

    10. If your tutorial gets bad reviews delete it and revise it, then post it again and expect better results, don't just leave it, then write a revised edition (ive seen this before)

    Reading Tutorials

    Its always good to actually read the tutorial before you post a review, i have seen this countless times, to where people just say "Nice tutorial" before they read it fully. This allows for people to post shite that falls under one of the "Do Not" Categories mentioned above. It happens all the time.

    Make sure you think about your review that you post, and make sure it makes sense.

    If you feel the need to "add something" to a tutorial, don't do it, its rude. Write your own damned tutorial instead of saying "O you left out this that i just found.. " or "Yes but this is a better way..." Just send them negs for it or a pm if it is bad enough, otherwise go about your own fisking business.

    Spend some time on reading the tutorial if it is indeed a good one, that is the best way to appreciate someone's work.


    Assigning Anti-Points To Tutorials

    Usually after I write a tutorial, alot of the time i just get either a blank assignment or an automatic neg with no assignment.

    There are several rules you should follow before assigning anti-points to tutorials:

    If it falls under the categories i mentioned that were "The supposed to's" then it deserves merit. (ie antipoints (positive ones))

    If it doesn't, figure out for yourself if it deserves negs, or just some direction via pm. The user can then promptly delete it if they feel it necessary. Anti-points aren't meant as a warning, they are meant as an action taken to either a good doing or a wrong doing.

    Make sure you NEVER assign a tutorial negative points unless it falls under my "Do Nots" up above. There is absolutely no reason to denegrate someone's work just because you "Dont agree with it"

    I find it appalling that tutorials are negged here all of the time because they have the word "Hacking" in them. O btw, do not post a tutorial that teaches you "leet speak"

    Hacking doesn't mean breaking into a computer. Hacking means figuring something about by manipulating it until you find the right answer.

    Sorry about this fit of rage, but i figure this will be useful to the people that obviously just come on here, see someone's name that says "Tutorials posted: 11" or something to that effect and go hrm.. that person has alot of antipoints, i want those, and goes on to post tutorials that fall under my "Do not" categories, and most of the time actually get points for them.

    It all disgusts me. Listen to Negative, that cat knows what he is doing, and listen to intelligence (if you have any) because it by itself should dictate whether or not you post a good tutorial, Antionline is not an archive, we don't want a load of **** here. We want good solid tutorials that can actually make sense to someone, and posting a tutorial about going to australias daily newspaper or whatever website is NOT a tutorial.


    /me steps off soapbox ready to be heckled.


    Help us when you have a problem - Und3ertak3r

    Whenever posting a cry for help, we know that you would like help or advice as accurate and as quickly as possible. This Tut is to give you some idea what information you can provide to help us help you.
    When it comes to computers (for that matter anything electronic) one symptom can have several causes so vague descriptions of your problem will not help.
    Also note that there are sites dedicated to dealing with general hardware and software problems one of these is, <,> and this tut will also help you if you decide to post on that site, it is a more family based site and not security based.

    You may need to read the “So Your Computer Is fUX0r3d?” tutorial (current count there are two parts. This thread may help you work out where to start as to how to describe your problem (that is if it doesn’t help you get started fixing it)

    So here is the list of information we need:
    A clear, but short description of the problem
    Operating System - really needed for Software related problems
    Motherboard: Brand and Model
    Memory: How much and in how many
    HDD Size and manufacturer (model may help also) oh Percentage of free space available
    Video Card / Adaptor: Brand and model PSU Brand and Power rating
    Other Cards i.e. network adaptor, soundcard, USB Hub, S-ATA adaptor.
    Optical Drives

    An example:

    Dual Boot WinXP-Pro and Win98
    AMD 2000+
    512MB loaded as 2 x 256MB PC 2100 DDR sticks
    60Gb Seagate (slave on IDE-0) 15% free in one part (40gb - NTFS) and 5% on the 2nd part (fat32)
    Leadtek A250 GF4-Ti4200 128MB
    2x Surcom 10/100 NIC’s
    SB-Live 5.1
    Sony 16x DVD and Sony 8x4x32x CD-RW
    400w PSU (Omni)
    Removable HDD Bay (set as master on IDE 0)
    When posting Software problems you may not need to post the hardware info above but have it on hand as someone may ask if needed.

    With Windows you will need to know how to find out what programs you have running both During “Start-Up” and while the machine is idle on the “desktop”.

    So when posting cries for help for software problems:

    A clear but concise description of the problem. The Operating System List any hardware that maybe used or affected by the software in question.

    And remember: Ask Questions.
    What happened....
    what did I do....
    what did I Install...
    what did I load....
    what site did I visit....
    .................................just before this problem started?

    I hope this helps



    Copyright Law and related laws contained in Title 17 of the United States Code

    Ok, this probably isn't the best tutorial, and I could have written it better, but it was just requested yesterday, and I wanted to get it up. So if it seems a little unorganized, get over it.

    Download from: PDF is 1 Meg and 252 try writing a tutorial from that....

    Basics and application forms from:
    What's protected?
    literary works, musical works, dramatic works, pantomimes and choreographic works, pictorial/graphic/sculptural works, motion pictures, sound recordings, and architectural works programs may be registered as "literary works"

    As of March 1, 1989, a copyright notice is not required on anything new, although it is still beneficial.
    How long does it last? For anything created after January 1, 1978, it will be 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.

    Section 107: Fair use...
    Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include-
    1> purpose (commercial or nonprofit educational purposes)
    2> nature of the work
    3> amount of portion used in relation to the work as a whole
    In other words, you can copy a small portion but cutting and pasting an entire article is not allowed. If you do want to cut and paste the entire thing, then you need to include a lot of criticism/comment/reporting/teaching, so that the cut and paste is not the primary part of your post.


    Another great source: 10 myths...
    >Even a posting on Usenet has a copyright unless the person explicitly puts that it is public domain.
    Are you reproducing an article from the New York Times because you needed to in order to criticise the quality of the New York Times, or because you couldn't find time to write your own story, or didn't want your readers to have to register at the New York Times web site? The first is probably fair use, the others probably aren't. Fair use is usually a short excerpt and almost always attributed.
    In other words, don't copy more then you have to....

    And just so you know, the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) made the laws a LOT more powerful.

    Remember, copyright is automatic now. You do NOT have to register anything. So any original work has a copyright the minute it is created. So if you want to cut and paste, either get permission, or wait 120 years... Even something written by a minor is protected.

    More links: Copyright in cyberspace> Crash course in Copyright


    Unwritten AntiOnline rules - VictorKaum

    I got inspired to write this by someone (can't remember who) proposing to write the unwritten rules for AntiOnline (AO in short).

    Well, here is a start:

    the written unwritten AO rules

    AO is an internet community excisting pretty long going back to the late ninties. Some members are around here since that early stage (the forum didn't exist then). The unwritten rules are part of the ever moving and dynamical microcosmos AO is. I think Negative once described it as such and so I'm taking this image to explain the unwritten rules.

    AO survives due to it's members. Posting and sharing knowledge, feelings, tech news, ... is the main action here on the forum. In order to do this the way it should be, there are excellent tutorials by various members here. For example the Asking Smart Questions thread from pwaring:

    the Ennis ultimate faq:

    And negative's tutorial index:

    However this is not the focus of this post, there are faq's and newbie tut's enough laying around at AO, written by various respected members.

    The focus of this post are the unwritten rules.
    These are formed by the 'feel' that is current. When joining a community like this one (pay attention lurking on forums is bad for your health) makes you part of one big vibe / feeling. Not only are you part of it, you also constitute it. In other words the members think and feel and therefor you should evaluate what is appropriate and what not. This takes some AO experience. Let me explain with some examples:

    - In the past there were some threads like the longest thread and w00t and such on. Well these threads where at a given point 'in' and more or less appropriate while it's perfectly imagable that they are not for the moment, so posting into or bumping these threads can be a bad idea.

    - Post gaining, useless post gaining is not appreciated however the evaluation of what is post gaining and what is not seems to differ from time to time, always use common sense and keep in mind what I said earlier the 'feel' of AO constantly changes.

    - The same goes for the antipoint assignments. Things that are not completly clear:
    Wether to add your name or not? Some people argue that you should never add your name even when assigning positive app's. This way 'revenge' or 'thanks' positive or negative app's are less possible. Other argue always to add your handle. To accomplish the same goal. You see different opinions about that. The same goes for the forums where you should assign ap's. in the past Cosmos was a place where you could easily gain or loose many points. Negative however asked recently not to assign points in the cosmos forum anymore. From the point of view of this forum this is correct. The points should somehow reflect the focus of the site and that is security, so should the points.

    - The points are subject of discussion and offcourse the way to banning, so be carefull with those. Alliances between members are not tolerated and are taken action upon. e.g. banning. There were high profile bannings in the past.

    - Post contents, 2 years ago it was perfectly possible to post program sources to compile that would destroy all info on your harddisk, now I think those posts would get negged badly. Ao made a turn to the admin side. And some people are really picky on all that even smells lile skriptkiddie stuff. So try to avoid thatn your post seems like skriptkiddie stuff.

    - One way to avoid that last thing is to pay attention to your style, spelling and grammar, I know my English is bad too, but a minimal in paying attention to what you type is appropriate.

    - Keep in mind whenever you gain a status like senior member or get high antipoint rates that there were people before you and that they probably made it possible for you to gain that status. So respect is at it place when required. However this is offcourse not absolute, everyone makes faults.
    At least I do

    - I recapitulate the most important thing to keep in mind: this site evolves constantly and at some day some posts will be possible and others not, that's the price you have to pay when joining a dynamical webcommunity. However posts that does not comply with the style idea I mentioned and are pure and only skriptkiddie stuff will never be tolerated just like that.

    Next read and search, the moderators get sick of moving and deleting threads cause people post them in wrong forums.

    The final thought on this all is: have the curage to use your own brains.



    RTFM-- Read The F........N Manual - Und3ertak3r
    I'm sure this has been covered before.. This is "und3rtak3r's" slant on the subject..

    What it means to RTFM

    R.T.F.M = Read The Flaming Manual (or if it is for the third time you have been told.Read The Farck'n Manual)

    Read the manual implies that you are to read the relevant information before asking any questions. So if you are having problems with your computer have you read the manuals for your computer? If it is a Software problem have you read the manual for the application? In my view reading the manual also implies that you have done reasonable research on the subject, how? It may sound obvious but a great place to start is with a search or two. Start with Google, if the hits are to confusing or out in left field then search any site you know that may have something to do with the subject. RTFM is about you using some of your own "Common sense" before sticking your foot in.

    Why RTFM before posting.

    When you come to AO, and for that matter most forum/chat sites, you will find that there are community expectations, and or rules of engagement. So You will find on most sites a "Before You first Post" sticky type post in the forum headers. It is a fairly good bet that the site owners or lead moderators have listed some very relevant information here that will help you to see how you can best fit in. You wouldn't go to a Needle Work Forum and expect to become accepted discussing the finer points of Feral Cat Hunting.. Would you?

    Why do we Expect you to RTFM.-- Simple so you will learn something.

    As this is a security related site, and the people who have the information are usually in the industry (i.e. they have jobs where this is everyday stuff), and getting to the bones of the problem is important in solving your problem as well as helping both learn from the experience. Or to put it in English, if you spend all day fixing up Id10t errors for fuktards, the last thing you want to waste your time doing the same in your spare time. You do want to learn, don't you?? You will want to fix this problem quickly next time you encounter it won't you?

    What we expect you to do so we don't have to say RTFM

    It is expected that you have read the following: Or at least it is recommended for you to have read the following regarding this site and posting here:

    Posts in the Newbie Security Questions forum:
    The AntiOnline Members FAQ: by Ennis
    The Tutorials: Start with the Sticky threads.
    Antionline netiquette: by valhallen
    The Note to Newbie’s: by allenb1963

    To start learning:
    Go back to the Tutorials and troll the threads. You could start with this one:

    Ennis: Basics of lots of things <url][/url]

    A common theme you will find in the Tutorials is search Google (there is a mirror near you). But Google is not the only search engine on this planet, but what ever your search engine favourite is USE IT. Then you may just post a help reply to have someone tell you that the information you posted could also be posted as a Tutorial.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Thank god, we were being swarmed, good work Neg!

  3. #3
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington
    I think that this might be the essential difference between a "FORUM", and just another online helpdesk?..........AO IMHO is a forum?

    That's my £0.02


  4. #4
    Right turn Clyde Nokia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Button Moon
    A good idea to put all the stickys into one big one, but do you think anyone is going to read ALL that?

    Maybe take the points that are relevent out and post that instead?
    Drugs have taught an entire generation of kids the metric system.


  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004

    Thanx, I got thru it, but my eyes are tearing now. Will have to take brake.

  6. #6
    () \/V |\| 3 |) |3\/ |\|3G47|\/3
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Can I just re-emphasize this part under Asking Smart Questions:

    Use meaningful names for your threads

    If you're going to ask a question on AntiOnline, make sure that you choose a suitable title that briefly describes your problem. Most of us don't spend every waking hour surfing the internet, so we scan pages very quickly and see if anything catches our eye. If you start a thread about whether or not you should upgrade from FAT32 to NTFS partitions with the title 'Help!', you'll get little if no help. However, if you choose a more appropriate title, e.g. 'FAT32 vs NTFS - which should I use?', you will (hopefully) catch the attention of those people who have expertise in that area and they will be able to help you.
    I have a feeling that many of the members to whom this information might be best directed won't be reading this thread, anyway.

    Go Finland!
    Deviant Gallery

  7. #7
    Priapistic Monk KorpDeath's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Too true, Mathgirl. It's akin to the conundrum of stupid people not knowing they are stupid. If they were smart enough to know that they are stupid, they could make allowances for the problem (like wearing a sign!) thereby warning intelligent people not to ask them anything.
    Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attainable, more people would be content to be ignorant than would take even a little trouble to acquire it.
    - Samuel Johnson

  8. #8
    AO Antique pwaring's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Originally posted here by mathgirl32
    I have a feeling that many of the members to whom this information might be best directed won't be reading this thread, anyway.
    Unfortunately that is the case with many things in life - the people who really should be reading the information can't be bothered. It's like detention at school, it doesn't work because the people who get given slips are the people who won't turn up to it anyway and the people who would turn up rarely, if ever, get given detention.

    But hey, I tried my best, can't offer any more than that. If there was a way to force people to read the tutorials I'd be the first to implement it.
    Paul Waring - Web site design and development.

  9. #9
    Just goes to show you...Never underestimate the power of the apathetic side...

  10. #10
    Sheesh, I got bored just scrolling through that post. Dries, you need a hobby amigo.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts