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The TechSpot FAQ

General

What are the General Forum Rules ?

Read Forum Rules

What are the avatar rules ?

Users are allowed to use avatars of 100*100 pixels and size under 20kB.

What is a signature and what may it contain ?

These are small blocks of text or a cool image which are your ticket for a cool "punch" line/graphic.
However limit these to 400*100 pixels and under 30kB.

What are Points ?

Points are like User Reward Program. You can earn points for viewing, posting or replying to threads. These points can be later redeemed for some stuffs

My Points are not increasing!

Point count has been disabled in following forums:
  • Introduce Yourself
  • General Discussion
  • Mischief
  • Movies, Music, Animations, Television

How do I search the forum ?

You can do a simple search by clicking Search on top of the forum. If you're in a Subforum, you can search inside that particular subforum only by using Search This Forum on top of the thread list.
You can use advanced search options too. Using advanced search, you can search for one or more keywords, you can set the display options, select forums to search, search for posts by a particular user etc.,

How do I use the Member List?

You can sort the memberlist by any column. Just click the header of the particular column.
You can search for usernames. Advanced search features are also available. You can also view all members starting with a particular alphabet.

What are announcements ?

Announcements are, as the name suggest, announcements about something important regarding the forum, rules, changes, policies etc. They appear on the top of the posts. Always make sure you read every announcement, to keep yourself updated about the forums.


What are subscriptions ?

When you post a new thread, or reply to a topic, you can choose to automatically add that thread to your list of subscribed threads, with the option to receive email notification of new replies to that thread.
You can change the default subscription mode from your UserCP.


How to turn off images in threads ?

If you don't want graphics like Signatures, Avatars, or any other images in threads, you have an option to turn it off in your UserCP.

Forum Posting

What are the Posting Guidelines ?

See HOWTO Ask a question

What are allowed in posting, and what is not ?

You may post about anything and everything under the sun unless it violates the forum rules.
You'll have to take care that your thread is posted in the correct section.

What should I do before creating a new thread ?

  1. Search the forums to see if the topics has not been discussed till now.
  2. Google for answers to simple and common queries.
  3. Check if you are going to post in the correct section.

What qualifies as spam ?

Threads which violates the forum rules are spam. Threads like posting illegal e-books, movies , etc. links are spam and will be deleted/edited.
Posts which don't go with the thread and is off topic are spam.
Posts which don't serve any purpose and aimed at increasing the post/point count are also spam.

What if I double post ?

Your post will automatically merged with the previous post in case the duration is within 30 seconds. If there is any instance of double post (of the same content in the posts), then you can only edit the posts. You'll have to report the post or PM the mods/admins asking them to delete the posts.

What if I post in a wrong section ?

If you feel that your post is in the wrong section, then DO NOT cross post in another section. PM mods/admins or simply report the thread, they'll move the thread to the correct section.

Can I edit my own posts?

You can edit your own post by clicking on the Edit button. When you click it, a quick editor opens up and which allows you to edit your post immediately on the same page by using AJAX scripting technique. For using all the editing and posting tools click on Go Advanced button after clicking on Edit

How to Thank for/Rate an useful post ?

You can thank members for their thread. So instead of posting just "Thank you" in the thread, you can use this Thank you feature. You can see this button in every first post of any thread.
Rating a thread is way to express the quality of the thread. You can rate thread by checking the "Stars" in the Rating options.

What Are Attachments?

Using Attachments, you can add extra stuffs in your post. You can attach .bmp, .doc, .gif, .jpe, .jpeg, .pdf, .png .zip
Note that only 3 Attachments are permitted per post.

How to quote from a post ?

You can either use Fast Reply or Quote button on any posts. If you use the Fast reply, then make sure that you check the "Quote message in reply?" in the message options. If you wish to use quote button, then a new page will load with the last 10 replies to that particular thread. You may quote from the posts and reply.
You can also manually use [QUOTE ]and[/QUOTE] tags to quote.

How to quote from multiple posts ?

You can use the M-Quote button. Click on M-Quote for each and every post you wish to quote and then click on Post Reply button. You'll now have the quotes, enter your reply and post.
You can also manually use [QUOTE ]and[/QUOTE] tags for each and every post you wish to quote.

Are there any special codes/tags I can use to markup my posts?

Yes, they are called vBCodes. Check the Complete vBCode List

What if I have a spoiler ?

You can use the [SPOILER] and [/SPOILER] tags for hiding a particular part of your post. User's can view the hidden part by clicking Spoiler button.

What are Smilieys?

A Smiliey is a small image that is intended to represent a human facial expression and convey an emotion.

Code Buttons and Clickable Smilieys

When you use the Post Reply button o create a new thread, you come across a set of buttons which you can use for common formatting jobs. In the same place, in the right hand side you'll see a set of smilies. They are called Clickable Smilies which you can click on and it'll add to your post. More Smilies can be viewed (and clicked on to add to your post/thread) but clicking on the "More" link below the Clickable Smilieys.

What are message icons?

Message icons, express the mood of your thread. For eg: You can select the downthumb icon, if you are posting about a movie you don't like.

User Communication

Can I send email to other members?

Yes, You can check the member's profile page for "Send Email" link. You can also email him by clicking the username in any post and clicking Send Email link from the drop down menu.
Note that some members don't wish to receive email and now you'll have to Private Message/Personal Message (PM) the members.

What is Private Messaging?

You can Private Message (PM) another member to "talk/chat" with him. It's a private conversation. You can PM other members if you wish to ask something which might not relate to the ongoing discussions in the threads.
Your PM box can store up to 50 messages (including the messages that you have send to other members). Here's your Private Messaging page
You can PM a user by clicking the username in any post and clicking Send PM link from the drop down menu. You can also Use Send New Message in your User CP.

Does this forum have a Chatroom or so ?

Yes, this channel has an IRC based chat room. Currently, it is an official channel #techspot running on irc.stardock.com server

What is this IRC and how do I use it ?

Follow the complete IRC guide for Newbies in the FAQ

Forum Administration

Who Are Moderators?

Moderators are 'forum leaders' who work on the forum to keep it 'clean', attend to reports, edit posts and work to make sure that the forum rules are not violated by the members. They also take decisions on forum issues and matters.
Tech Spot Moderators and Administrators

Why have some of the words in my post been ****ed ?

The admins have censored some swear words (like the f word), so you'll have the words ****ed.

How to report a thread ?

You can see a report a post link on the right hand side of a single post header. You can use to report spam, advertising messages, and problematic (harassment, fighting, or rude) posts. In case you report a post/thread, you'll have the option to enter your comments in the report. Use it properly. Moderators who attend to the report can see the thread/post URL and who reported it.

Where did my post go ?

Think it twice. If you have broke a rule, there's a high chance that your post is deleted by a moderator. If you had posted it on a wrong section, it may have moved into the proper section by a moderator. In any case, don't create a thread for that. PM your moderator/admin.

Misc

To **** up with this forum

Well, we can't help much on that. We suggest you to search for a better place of your type. Please don't make posts on that.

To Do List

  1. How do I create and vote in polls?
  2. What is Enhanced Editor Interface ?

HOWTO Ask a question

So you've got a problem, huh ? Of course forums are the best place to get an answer. But most of your problems remain unsolved. Why ?

Before Posting a query

Gooooooooooooogle

There are a lot of search engines available on earth, Google being one of the best. Always the first step you must do is to get answer from Search Engines. 99% of the problems are generic, and has been answered before. So there's a fair good chance to get your problem solved without waiting for someone to reply.

Read FAQs and Guides

There are numerous FAQs and Guides available on almost all software/hardware on earth. Most of the common problems are handled by these FAQs.

If you're unable to find a FAQ, Open up www.google.com, type in software FAQ [Eg: Apache FAQ], and click Search.

If everything fails, read Manuals

This should come first in the list, But Manuals are considered as the most boring part regarding a software.

If you've some problems, Please read the Read-Me/Documentation files provided along with the source. Try to get a manual from the software website and have a look.

Posting on forums

So, if you haven't find a solution by any of the above methods, the next best thing you can do is to ask the experts, of course found at various forums.

Use the Search Button

On TechSpot Forums and any other forums, You can find a Search Button for sure. Use that before posting a new topic. There is a high chance that your question has been answered already, or there will be a discussion going on the same topic.

Look for the Stickies

Moderators make Important topics as Sticky Topics and these topics stay on top of others. Check whether any of the Stickies contains solution for your problems.

If you haven't found a solution either ways, create a new topic for your problem.

Use a Sensible Topic Title

Always Choose a Sensible and apt Topic Title. Generic titles will attract more user views, but are often discarded by Serious users/hackers.

On Web forums, the subject header is your golden opportunity to attract qualified experts' attention in around 50 characters or fewer. Don't waste it on babble like “Please help me” (let alone “PLEASE HELP ME!!!!”; messages with subjects like that get discarded by reflex). Don't try to impress us with the depth of your anguish; use the space for a super-concise problem description instead.

A good convention for subject headers, used by many tech support organizations, is “object - deviation”. The “object” part specifies what thing or group of things is having a problem, and the “deviation” part describes the deviation from expected behavior.

Stupid: HELP! Video doesn't work properly on my laptop!

Smart: XFree86 4.1 misshapen mouse cursor, Fooware MV1005 vid. chipset

Smarter: XFree86 4.1 mouse cursor on Fooware MV1005 vid. chipset - is mishappen

Be precise and informative about your problem

  • Describe the symptoms of your problem or bug carefully and clearly.
  • Describe the environment in which it occurs (machine, OS, application, whatever).
  • Provide your OS level detail and release level (e.g.: “Fedora Core 2”, “Windows XP SP2”, etc.).
  • Describe the research you did to try and understand the problem before you asked the question.
  • Describe the diagnostic steps you took to try and pin down the problem yourself before you asked the question.
  • Describe any recent changes in your computer or software configuration that might be relevant.
  • Post the output of error logs, if present.

Provide your System Specs

Whether it is a Software or Hardware problem, always provide your complete Machine configuration, along with specific information about your Software.

Eg: If you've got some problems with your Web Server. I'm using Fedora Core 4 with kernel 2.6.15, GNOME 2.10, no KDE, Apache 2.0.54, MySQL 3.14 and PHP 5.0.4. My System Specs are AMD Athlon XP 2000+ on an ASUS A7N266VM Mobo, 1 GB DDR400 RAM, 120 GB Seagate Baracudda HDD.

Provide more details on a specific Hardware/Software you're facing problems with.

Prepared to provide more details

The hackers gonna ask you a lot of questions. So be prepared. Always Do the best you can to anticipate the questions a hacker will ask, and to answer them in advance in your request for help.

Please Read This too - How To Ask Questions The Smart Way

The IRC Guide

What is IRC ?

IRC or Internet Relay Chat is a form of communication medium where people around the globe can chat in real time. You can meet and chat with various Techspot members, moderators and administrators here on #techspot.

Why IRC ?

We have chosen IRC based chat room because it is the best way to maintain a quality environment in a chat room. Responsible authorities have enough control over the members and problem creators can be avoided easily by the options of banning and other various restrictions. To the contrary, Java based popular chat solutions let users to enter and leave at their own will which is a problem in itself.

What should I do before connecting to IRC ?

We, at Techspot try our best to maintain a quality environment. For this, we expect members to follow certain rules and guidelines. The Techspot IRC rules can be accessed here - http://forum.techspot.in/showthread.php?t=2340. A member agrees to have read the rules and follow it before entering the chat room.

Ok. I have read the rules. Now how do I connect ?

To use the IRC and chat with fellow Techspot members you need to select, download and install an IRC client. The most common IRC clients are X-Chat and mIRC. You also have an option to avoid this as your favourite browsers today support IRC. IRC on Opera is inbuilt whereas for using it on Firefox you need to download an extension called Chatzilla. Internet Explorer doesn't support this at the moment. You can configure them by reading the next question

This IRC clients are so confusing. How do I configure them ?

The basic thing you need to know to configure an IRC client is the server and channel name. The server address of techspot IRC is irc.stardock.com and the channel name is #techspot. IMHO, X-Chat is the easiest to use and best featured IRC client but you can use a client upon your wish. Here is a step by step instruction for configuring various chat clients :-

X-Chat

  • Download and install the latest X-Chat application from http://www.xchat.org/download/.
  • Click on X-Chat button on Top Menu bar and click on Server List.
  • Click on the Add button and you'll see 'New Network' in the left panel. You can rename it to something more familiar like Techspot. Lets take it as Techspot for now.
  • Click on Techspot and then click Edit
  • In 'Servers for Test' column you'll see newserver/6667. Edit it to irc.strdock.com. *Leave the other settings as it is. In channels to join write #techspot. Leave the other fields blank. Now click on Close.
  • In the server list window which is still open enter a valid nick name similar to your techspot user id. You can modify second choice and thired choice a little. It is used when your first choice is already used by other member,
  • Now click on Connect and you are ready to chat.

Opera

  • Click on New Page and in the address bar type irc://irc.stardock.com/techspot .
  • A window will po up where you can enter your name and e-mail and click on Next.
  • In nick, choose a suitable nick name similar to your techspot username, enter it and click next
  • The sever address should already be present. If its not, enter irc.stardock.com.
  • Click on Finish and you are ready to chat now.

Chatzilla(Firefox)

  • Download the latest build of Chatzilla from here https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/16/ .
  • Restart Firefox, click on Tools>Extensions>Chatzilla>Options
  • In the general tab, check the Identification column.
  • Enter an appropriate nickname and usename similar to your techspot username.
  • Now, simply go to address bar and type irc://irc.stardock.com/techspot and you are ready to chat.

mIRC

  • Download and install the latest mIRC version from http://mirc.com/get.html
  • Click on File>Select Server>Add
  • In Description enter Techspot, in IRC server enter irc.stardock.com.
  • Now click on Connect in left panel and enter a proper name, email, nick name and alternative nickname
  • In the Option you can tick Connect On Startup if you want mIRC to connect to techspot server everytime you start mIRC.
  • Once you are connected to server type /join #techspot and you are connected.

What are commands and how do I use them in IRC ?

Commands and text are typed in the same place. By default, commands begin with the character / . If you have a graphical client such as X-Chat, mIRC, Opera or Chatzilla for Windows, many commands can be executed by clicking on icons with the mouse pointer. It is, however, highly recommended that you learn to type in the basic IRC commands first. These basic commands work on all the good clients.

Some examples are given below. In these, suppose your nick is "techspotter", and that you are on the channel #techspot.

Your friend "ashwin" is in #techspot with you, and your friend "riyaz" is on IRC but is not on a channel with you. You can apply these examples in general by substituting the relevant nick or channel names.

Here is a list of basic IRC commands and its uses below them :-

/join #techspot
You join the channel #techspot.
/who #techspot
Gives some info on users in the channel.
@ = channel op, while * means IRC op.
hello everyone
Everyone on #coolness sees <yournick> hello everyone. (You need not type in your own nick.)
/me is too cool
Everyone in #techspot sees * techspotter is too cool
/leave #techspot
You leave the channel.
/whois riyaz
You get some info about riyaz or whatever nickname you entered.
/whois techspotter
This is some info others see about you.
/nick newnick
Changes your nick to "newnick"
/msg riyaz hi there.
Only riyaz sees your message (you don't need to be on the same channel for this to work).
/ping #techspot
Gives information on the delay (round-trip) between you and everybody on #coolness.
/ping riyaz
Gives information on the delay (round-trip) between you and just riyaz.
/dcc chat ashwin
This sends ashwin a request for a dcc chat session. ashwin types /dcc chat techspotter to complete the connection. DCC chat is faster (lag free) and more secure than /msg.
/msg =ashwin Hi there!
Once a DCC connection has been established, use the /msg =nick message format to exchange messages (note the = sign). DCC does not go through servers, so it are unaffected by server lag, net splits, etc.
/help
This works in many clients. Try it!
/quit good night!
You quit IRC completely, with the parting comment so that others see "*** Signoff: techspotter (good night!)".

NOTE: When you are not in a named channel, lines not beginning with a / have no effect, and many commands work differently or fail to work altogether.

Why should I register my nick ?

You can register your nick so that someone else cannot use your nickname and immitae as you. Registering nick requires you to enter the password. this is the command to register your nick on stardock server - /msg nickserv REGISTER [password] [email] (without square brackets).

Links

If you still have some questions left unanswered or problems unsolved you can visit these well written IRC help guides :-

IRC Help For Beginners

Detailed Help For Beginners

Wiki For a list of IRC commands

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