Where to ask a question about an IDE?

It's programming related (well, kinda), but it's also a question about software. It's most likely that programmers will be able to answer the question correctly.

So, should it go on Stack Overflow, Super User or both?


5 Answers 5


Most definitely SO.

An IDE is programming related by definition!

StackOverflow is filled with questions regarding Visual Studio, Eclipse, etc.

  • Thanks for the answer. I was hesitating because most of these questions where asked before SU
    – marcgg
    Sep 4, 2009 at 16:57
  • Just take IDE questions to SO. 95% of the time they will be appropriate.
    – jjnguy
    Sep 4, 2009 at 16:58

Where to ask IDE questions

  • Use of an IDE in programming: Stack Overflow
  • Writing an IDE or IDE add-on: Stack Overflow
  • Mass-deploy an IDE to corporate machines locked down for use by sad gray coders: Server Fault
  • How to attach IDE cables: Super User
  • 7
    "How to attach IDE cables" ftw :) . I would have accepted this one but jinguy was first and with a good answer as well
    – marcgg
    Sep 4, 2009 at 17:04
  • Now this ("Use of an IDE in programming -> SO") makes more sense. How about general IDE settings questions that have nothing to do with programming? E.g.: stackoverflow.com/questions/2774315/…
    – Jonik
    May 5, 2010 at 15:46
  • 1
    @Jonik: IMHO, since IntelliJ is primarily a programming tool, such questions are ok on SO... However, it would be equally at home on SU (as demonstrated by the accepted answer being applicable to a generic, "where are app settings stored on OS X?" question).
    – Shog9
    May 5, 2010 at 17:36
  • IDE - the cable - never struck me! :D Was wondering, what has as IDE got to do with SuperUser?!
    – Senthil
    Aug 22, 2010 at 18:09

StackOverflow. It is more about Programming because it is an enviorment you wish to program in.


Stack Overflow. Despite the fact that we get weekly flags to migrate questions about IDEs and compilers (I'm not kidding) to SU, these programs are definitely programming related.


Bill the Lizard:

these programs are definitely programming related.

So, all IDE questions should go to SO, then? Even ones that have "Super User" written all over them? (I mean, questions that very much resemble a typical SU question, except that the computer program in question happens to be programming-related.)

What prompted me to wonder about this was this: In IntelliJ on OS X, how do you clear out all global setting info, licensing etc.

I don't mind either way – I'm just curious about what the policy is. If SO is the place for IDE questions, should most/some of these and these be moved from SU to SO?

  • 4
    @Jonik: It's up to the author, and ultimately the community, but in my opinion all IDE questions should be on SO. Even questions on setting the font colors and such. Programmers are the primary (only?) users of IDEs, so there will be a much higher likelihood of getting an answer on SO. Plus, we already have a ton of questions like that, so the community doesn't seem to be against this one exception. I think the real gray area is around programs like vim and emacs which are often used by programmers, but aren't full-fledged IDEs (arguable, I know). May 5, 2010 at 15:54
  • @Bill: Well, yeah, I guess you're right. And maybe it doesn't matter that much if there continue to be IDE questions on both sites... If some stick out too badly as belonging to the other one, the community will move them. [Offtopic] Btw, another (emerging) huge grey area is AWS (and similar cloud topics). You can already see this between SO/SF. It's a pretty natural consequence of the fact that in the cloud developer & sysadmin tasks/roles converge somewhat.
    – Jonik
    May 5, 2010 at 18:34

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