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How to Ask for Help the Right Way

Yesterday, I received the following email:

Hi, We’d bought oracle 10g with RH Enterprise Linux in 2005. After year of a smooth
operation we’re having following problems with Oracle 10g.
– system shutdowns once a day automatically
– listener could not find available handler for requested type of server .
Listener failed to start. But registered with the listener and that the
appropriate handlers are accepting connections.
We can’t figure it out why the server is suddenly shutdowns. Can you provide us
solution solving this problem.
Looking forward hearing from you,

Now, how am I supposed to reply? I’m almost tempted to send him here, but this is not a “read the manual” issue, it is much worse than that. This is one example of how you ask for help the wrong way.

So, how to ask for help the right or the smart way. Well, provide details. Details like the type and version number for your database and operating system, error messages, test scenarios, test data, test scripts. Am I missing something?

In short, the more specific you are in describing your problem the better chance someone will respond with a solution.

I guess I will reply with the following two links:

Filed in Oracle, Tips on 11 Dec 06 | Tags: ,

Reader's Comments

  1. |

    Hey, I could be misremembering, but I could have sworn that “How to Ask Questions the Smart Way” actually was written by two guys jointly, not just by Eric. grin

    Rick (call me “co-author”) Moen

  2. |

    Rick, I apologize. I have updated the post.