A recent question asked the community to identify a cable. We've seen a couple of these in the past and I've listed the 4 that I could find after a quick search through the site. I'm sure there are more that I am forgetting or have been deleted by the system.

One of the four above is closed.

Do we want "Identify this component" questions?

1 Answer 1


The main problem with this type of question is that it is difficult to know in what direction they are heading unless the OPs are very specific.

For example, if someone asks us to identify an obscure audio card with a non-standard interface, it may be because they love it and want to build a new system around it but don't know what to get. That sounds like a hardware recommendation request to me, but you may disagree. However, if all that they want to do is look for another one on eBay, well that's a support request.

So, before voting to close any "what is this" question, we need to ask "Why do you want to know?" Maybe the site guidelines should require users to state this in their questions.

Another problem with these questions is that they can appeal to one's vanity and Googling prowess. I have to admit that I am guilty in this respect.

  • 2
    I agree that these could go either way. I think this is another type of question that should be probed with comments before being hastily closed because it isn't a definite hardware recommendation request.
    – Adam
    Commented Mar 23, 2017 at 15:17

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