There is a question on Stack Overflow that addresses an issue I am having, however after trying all of the posted answers, I am still encountering the issue. What should I do? Should I post a new question which would be very similar to the old question? Should I post on the question stating that I have the same problem but none of the solutions worked?


If you have the exact same problem as is described in another question, and it simply doesn't have answers, or it's pretty clear the answers don't really solve the problem (they are of low quality, don't have a high score, don't answer the question, aren't marked as accepted, etc.) then conceptually your question is a duplicate. You shouldn't be asking a new question but rather asking yourself How do I get attention for old, unanswered questions? (In this context unanswered applies to "no good answers" just as well as it does for "no answers at all".)

If, on the other hand, there seem to be quality answers to that question, and they appear to have solved the problem of the person posting the question and other readers, then odds are your question isn't actually the same, even if it is similar. In this case it would be appropriate to post a new question. In it you should:

  1. Describe the problem you're having
  2. Link to the other related question, saying that you looked through it.
  3. Describe how you used the answer(s) to that question to try to solve your problem, and the problems that you had using those answers. If you couldn't understand the answers, explain what aspects of them you do/don't understand, if they don't function properly explain the errors you get, or the improper output, etc.

That third part is key; it is what makes your question not a duplicate.

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    And to be clear, 2 and 3 are not satisfied by a sentence like "i tried many solutions present here at stackoverflow with no luck" (alas a quote found in the wild.) Be specific. – Kate Gregory Dec 4 '13 at 19:10

It's a kind of tough situation, but the new question will just get downvoted and closed as a duplicate. What you can do, however, is place a bounty on that question, and say that it hasn't received enough attention or it needs better answers. However, if there is no accepted answer, and none of the solutions worked at all, you could post a new question asking the question, saying you found that question, but none of them worked.

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    I think that if the new question clearly states "none of the solutions worked for me," and also clearly states how/why each of the existing solutions fails, it can hardly be considered a duplicate. – Angew Dec 4 '13 at 18:52

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