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Adding option for OPs to specify Version of the Software For example topic area Excel version 2003 or 2007, 2010 , 2013, 2016 , 365

I usually see that OPs ask question without stating the version of software they use and have question on; and sometimes answering the question will depend on the version of software they use.
of course, Experts can ask question about version or software or can provide multiple solution based on different versions, i was wondering if the idea of adding a field for OPs to put version of the software would be useful and will save time both of OPs and Experts.

any idea?
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Rank: Genius

Expert Comment

Chris Luttrell2016-09-01 01:53 PMID: 1933416
I like Paul's suggestion, "It would certainly improve the PAQ quality if solutions had "applies to" version capability."  There could also be an optional place the people asking the questions could provide their versions if they could to help provide more direct feedback, especially in all the areas it can really make a difference.  

I agree with Paul and Jim on the problems with having patchy use of version-specific topic areas.  Having it all together or a more controlled pattern would be better, i.e. "SQL Server Pre-2005" and "SQL Server 2005 and up" or just the one "SQL Server."
Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

>>improve the PAQ quality if solutions had "applies to" version capability."

Disagree.  Who is going to go back through all the PAQ's and update them when a new version comes out when the answer still applies?

If someone stumbles against the PAQ, are we going to "vote" for "still works in version "X"?

Got a minute?

Many years ago when people still used actual books as reference material I worked on a project where every server came with a complete set of reference manuals.  Since the project had MANY servers, and there many extra copies of the manuals.  Unix was the OS...

After a few upgrades, they were put out, first come, first serve and I grabbed a copy of the Unix command reference and C programming reference manuals.

The person with me was quick to ask "Why do you want those, they are many releases behind"?

My reply:  When was the last change in the "cat" or "printf" commands?

The person with me also grabbed a copy.

Moral:  Old doesn't mean obsolete.
Rank: Genius

Expert Comment

Chris Luttrell2016-09-01 05:42 PMID: 1933482
I did not mean to imply anyone would go back through old PAQs to update them, but it is good when I search anywhere, not just EE, to know if their solution and code was written against a previous version of the product, be that SQL Server, Excel, .Net2.0. (guessing on that last one, I am a DB/Data person myself these days)  I often know myself if the product has changed a lot since then and if I should even consider it or move on the the next one quickly.
And I am old, and hopefully not obsolete. I still have bookshelf's full of old  manuals like those.
Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

There is a place for versioning.  There are soooooo many quesions in my TA where OP's are running versions that have been desupported for MANY years.  Experts post code based on supported versions only to discover it won't work.

Agreeing with Jim that more TAs and making asking more complicated hasn't worked in the past.

If you have an idea how to make versions unobtrusive to the asking process, please share.

A single box won't work:  Do you mean the OS version, Database version, driver version or something else completely?

The Turbo-Tax method of asking questions:  Just answer these simple 100 pre-questions, and we'll get you the correct Experts, won't work.

>>I still have bookshelf's full of old  manuals like those.

I finally gave mine up.  I Google and the links I go to, sadly, are SO most of the time...  can't find crap on EE search but I'm not the first person to express that concern.
Rank: Prodigy

Expert Comment

PortletPaul2016-09-01 06:36 PMID: 1933501
It would improve the quality of PAQ
>>>>  but it ain't going to happen

I can't see that data being supplied by those asking the questions.
or by an army of very knowledgeable volunteers

& on to a different topic:

site:experts-exchange.com ..........

problem solved
Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

>>site:experts-exchange.com ..........

That is EXACTLY what I use when looking for something I know is here somewhere.  Sadly, I still rarely find it...

If I didn't tag it right in my Knowledge Base it is often lost.