Debugging CI/CD problems would normally be on-topic on DevOps, according to Can I ask a question about debugging problems in common DevOps tools?.

Would the same be true if the problem are actually caused by coding errors in the software product itself, not in the area of the DevOps tools used in the development process for that software product.

For example build failures in CI executions, caused by coding errors, not by build environment problems, of course.

Related post, for context: What is/should be our take about code-debugging questions?

1 Answer 1


Main problems with debugging questions are:

  • They usually need a talk to narrow down the problem
  • They're likely to become Chameleon Questions where solving first problem surface another and doesn't solve the problem in OP's point of view, who edit it and change it enough to invalidate existing answer, turning into a forum like talk.
  • There's chances the problem is not where the OP think it is, it's often a XY problem

While as in the case above there can be a 'kind of useful' answer, the answer itself has no real link with the question tittle and finding the root cause of the problem is not always easy.

Main problem could be that the OP will spot something wrong absolutely sideway of the question and as such no satisfying answer could be made, I'd argue my answer to the question above is not really satisfying or good, it just summarize what the OP found during the chat session.

We're not overwhelmed by the number of question for now, so my take would be to try to get them in an useful form if an answer can be made, if not, we should close it with (Started another meta for custom close reasons):

"This question was caused by a problem that can no longer be reproduced or a simple typographical error. While similar questions may be on-topic here, this one was resolved in a manner unlikely to help future readers."

This assume there's people here willing to do 'interactive support', if there's no one for that, the question will stay as is if it's clear enough. If the OP is not responsive then it should be closed as Unclear".

  • 1
    - for bullet #1 - IMHO perfectly valid, comments are OK for that, chat as well if too noisy - just as your example (and plenty of similar ones on SO) prove. Even if on chat/comments even the procedure for narrowing down can itself be a valuable resource for those willing. And can be referenced in other question/answers/debugging sessions, even if unrelated to the original question. Commented Apr 7, 2017 at 18:16
  • 1
    - for bullet #2 rollback and comment inviting to ask a new question can be a way of approaching this. But I agree - it is quite annoying, I saw many users who keep doing that on subsequent questions. Commented Apr 7, 2017 at 18:19
  • I feel this answer fits better the sister question: Can I ask a question about debugging problems in common DevOps tools?. I asked this one specifically for errors in the sw itself, not for the devops tools used in the development process for that sw. Commented Apr 7, 2017 at 18:38
  • @Dan I think the problems encountered stay the same. But that's mainly points of attention
    – Tensibai
    Commented Apr 7, 2017 at 18:41
  • I agree. But it may be relevant if in the end the consensus is to accept as on-topic one kind of questions but consider the other off-topic. Which is the end goal of both these questions, if I'm not mistaken (I mean establishing their on/off-topic scope) Commented Apr 7, 2017 at 18:43
  • @Dan indeed, but what I did mean with this answer is that sometimes it takes a while to narrow to a code problem on something which looks like CI system problem, Hence the idea of welcoming the questions and close as not useful if a code problem is spotted
    – Tensibai
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 8:58
  • And well, if the code problem itself is not worthy of being kept
    – Tensibai
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 8:59

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