1. The Magnificent Marty Major is the name I plan to use when I retire and become a magician on the Grapefruit Circuit.
2. My help actually falls under the umbrella of training really - not technical support. Nothing was broken; I just had better documentation than the OP could find... :)
As far as an answer to the mystery of the vanishing forum OPs, I don't know.
But based on the warped bias I carry from 15+ yrs in support, I would surmise that the majority of them eventually realize that their posted problem had something to do with a completely unrelated 'thing' - and they are too embarrassed to admit it.
You just move on. There's no crying in technical support.
Unlike public forums, since members pay, we try hard to give / foster genuine help. I think there is a high percentage of cases here where the feedback is useful.
We don't demand that members who ask for help follow up to close out an issue but I know many who have been helped greatly (either to solve a problem or to realize that they need to take a different approach).
I'm a little intimidated posting here, after all everyone on this thread is in the IPVM Hall of Fame, but thought I might chime in with a perspective from the other side of the modem.
I've asked loads of questions over the years (FIDO Net anyone?) in various technical help forums and I would say that for every time it was worth my time asking the question, there'd be two that weren't worth the trouble of typing it. Now Imma not saying that its always their fault, cuz Lord knows I'm far from perfect, but a lotta times its plain as day that they could've done me a better turn.
In my opinion these are the general categories these 'gurus' fall into:
Quick Draw McGraw: This types whips out an answer quicker than you can finish your question seems. Usually, they key in on on word or phrase that reminds them of somethin' and there you go, instant answer.
The Gatling Gunman: This type will quickly launch a into a sustained rapid-fire answer post, and starts like McGraw but ends up just giving every answer to every question he's ever heard that's even close to yours.
The Winchester Warrior:This type as the name implies, only has one or two shells in the chamber, usually of start-from-scratch nature. He's the guy telling you to reinstall the OS on a new hard drive because your left speaker ain't workin!
Deputy Dog: As bad as the others can be, this one is the worst. He never fires a shot ever. He will just keep asking you more questions, getting broader and broader, hoping for you to break off before he gives a wrong answer. He'll want you to find out which power grid (I'm not kidding'.) you are on (the wrong one). Eventually right when it seems he is on the verge of some flash of insight, he'll go silent, rendering all your time spent explaining wasted...
The Lone Ranger: Takes aim, fires a silver bullet, need I say more?
Though I wanna share one other secret you might not know. A good ten percent of the time, I've told my gunman that I'm satisfied when I'm anything but, just because I don't think that he has a chance in hell of helping me, but he's a nice guy who tried to please real hard.
So yes, I admit it, I faked the Big A, you know as in Answer...