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I may not be good at using the search feature, so I couldn't find a duplicate of this.


Question: If I do not understand the answer to one of my questions, and the answerer disappears(or he has been offline for a long time), I don't expect anyone to notice my comment asking for:

  • Clarification or help in understanding part of the answer
  • Proof of part that seems a little handwavy

Is it acceptable to ask a new question clarifying part of an answer or asking for proof of some statement within that answer, assuming it is an appropriate stand alone question?

Should I provide a link to the previous question(even if it isn't required at all)?

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I find it acceptable, since looks like the only (probable) way to get an answer to your question and getting answers to questions is the whole point of this site. To provide context, give a link to the old question in the new one. To help possible future readers understand the tricky parts in the old answer, add a comment under it with a link to the new question.

If the new question is appropriate as a stand alone question, there is no reason for not asking it. Providing links both ways makes it more useful.

It is also possible to offer a bounty on the old question with a message like "the old answer does not give sufficient detail".

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