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Regarding the proposal to delete this redirect, I understand that many things can be "edited", hence perhaps the feeling of ambiguity, but by convention this redirect was chosen to be used to specifically refer to systemd units: in what way would deleting it and replacing all its backlinks with (lengthy) direct links to the target section be an improvement over the current situation?

Recently I've seen several redirects marked for deletion (with Template:Remove), but I don't recall seeing a discussion to elaborate a consistent deletion policy for redirects (please correct me if I'm wrong). With the premise that in general redirects are harmless unless they are added with malicions intentions (e.g. spam), should we agree on a general rule?

-- Kynikos (talk) 11:55, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

I believe the only thing we've agreed on so far is to archive templates by replacing the colon with a semicolon, e.g. Template;Wikipedia. I believe categories are still removed as usual. For redirects, this has come up in the past and most of us agreed (if I recall correctly) that there's indeed little motivation to remove existing redirects.
In any case, any deletion policy should only be considered (to put it lightly; here it was apparently already decided and "deprecated" by an individual party) when all backlinks have been updated. This is not the case here, there's over 200 pages still referencing this template. As such, I've removed the template.
We can still discuss if alternatives pose an improvement over the current situation of Edit. -- Alad (talk) 14:48, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
I removed some redirects recently (e.g. The Arch boot process, Networkmanager-0.7 or Boot Loaders) which were unused, had no history and resulted in confusing or useless results on the search page (which is not sorted and does not allow to filter out redirects). There are more of these listed in ArchWiki_talk:Maintenance_Team#Removing_unnecessary_redirects_/_pages, but I don't feel like removing all of them, especially the various grammatical forms are often useful to people who don't know about the "word-ending links".
I might be convinced that this redirect should be avoided, deprecated and removed, but there has to be a clear alternative (maybe systemctl edit?) proposed in its place. In case Larivact planned to make this a disambiguation page, it should be discussed whether it would still be allowed to be linked to or it should be left out only for search results - see Category_talk:Disambiguation_pages#Introduction.
-- Lahwaacz (talk) 18:52, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
I did not propose this redirect to be deleted, I just used Template:Remove because we don't have a fitting status template to deprecate redirects. I apologize for the caused confusion. Lahwaacz correctly figured out my intention, I think edit should become a disambiguation page and the link uses be replaced with a new redirect edit the unit, with the same target.--Larivact (talk) 19:22, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
Thanks, but you should really discuss this new redirect before replacing all the links... -- Alad (talk) 19:38, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
It is hard to come up with a good redirect name without trying it out. --Larivact (talk) 19:41, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
I deployed override the unit experimentally on two pages: Special:Diff/555086 and Special:Diff/555084, but I will wait on your guys' greenlight before I make any further changes regarding this matter. Thanks for this discussion. --Larivact (talk) 19:52, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
I don't think that "override" is way better than "edit", because the systemctl subcommand is called "edit". Even grammatically, I understand "override" to mean "counteract something with the opposite" (see Wiktionary:override), whereas "edit" nicely expresses that only parts of the unit can be changed. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 20:33, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
The point is that the edit subcommand does not directly edit unit files. It creates either drop-in unit files or replacement unit files. While override can also mean to "change the way sth. operates"[1], both drop-in and replacement unit files can override and extend unit files. I therefore propose edit to be replaced with "Create a drop-in unit file" or "Create a replacement unit file".
While experimenting, I created three redirects, which can now be deleted: override the unit, extend the unit and drop-in file.
Lastly I also think that Systemd#Editing provided units should be renamed to Systemd#Modifying provided units. --Larivact (talk) 07:26, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
Disambiguation page draft:

Edit may refer to:

--Larivact (talk) 06:00, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
As I originally explained in #Radical alternative™ complex-worded redirects don't seem to work too well for me because they would force to e.g. use verbs only in the same form, no past/future/ing/third-person, same with nouns, no plurals, etc., unless we want to create dozens of them for all their meaningful grammatical combinations. A simple redirect like edit instead can be modified with suffixes, or easily adapted with a link label. After all, ArchWiki is not a dictionary, it's not that we have to necessarily use the edit page to represent all its possible meanings. -- Kynikos (talk) 17:04, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
In my last reply I changed my proposal to nouns (drop-in unit file & replacement unit file), which can be perfectly pluralized with link trail: Drop-in unit files, replacement unit files --Larivact (talk) 17:31, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
I agree with the reasoning, but "edit" is too simple - it is commonly used to refer to editing systemd units as well as text files, which are both very relevant to Arch, and there were even some cases where the redirect was used in the other context. I think we can find different two simple redirects for these cases, but on the other hand I'm not sure about multiple redirects for the same section - that seems unnecessarily complex and redundant, because most people will use a full section link with some custom text. -- Lahwaacz (talk) 22:15, 19 November 2018 (UTC)
Let's try to proceed by exclusion. I think we all agree that the solution to this problem is another redirect. Then:
  1. A short special link to be used with free labels; - excluded; this leaves us with redirects that can be used without a label;
  2. Various long redirects containing a verb+object clause - excluded for being too inflexible; this leaves us with short redirects that can be used without a label;
  3. A verb-only redirect: "edit" is too generic; its synonyms are too ("modify", "alter", etc.); there's no verb that inherently means "edit a systemd unit"; should we invent a neologism?
  4. A noun-only redirect: this is Larivact's drop-in unit file and replacement unit file solution; I can't think of a word (or short compound) that has both meanings.
Right now I don't see any other logical alternatives to these.
-- Kynikos (talk) 14:54, 20 November 2018 (UTC)
I don't follow why you exclude (1.) right away. It would allow for a shorthand of very frequently employed terminology (be it {{aw:edit}} or [[aw:edit|edit]]), while at the same time allowing edit to become a disambiguation page. (Or is the plan to create {{an:arch neogolism}} with (3.) now? ;)
But at the same time "edit" is the ultimate example for the context of this wiki, is it not? I just don't see enough cases to justify implementing it either, i.e. "Archwiki is no dictionary". Instead I'd simply count on user ingenuity to type "text editor", if "edit" did not yield the desired search result for now. Along that I would simplify and assume searches for sed/awk/output redirection/binary/ex from above ambiguity examples will find the target content some other way. This then leaves the current systemd edit redirect and editors <- create that redirect to the list of text editor applications, done. --Indigo (talk) 22:50, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
We do not use any such links currently and it goes against our established style. It is not about reader confusion, redirecting "edit" to Systemd#Editing provided units is arbitrary. We generally take care to only use established terms properly, why not in this case? --Larivact (talk) 06:22, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
See [2]. The main trigger (I think) was systemd's introduction of the "systemctl edit" command/drop-in file mechanism. It's pretty important for system consistency but too specific to elaborate on it adequately in Help:Reading. --Indigo (talk) 08:43, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
Since I don't see it was mentioned here before, but may help you for the background: As I remember it, the main motivation for edit/start/enable redirects was to de-duplicate the otherwise repetitive content (of chains of basic systemctl commands) in the articles. --Indigo (talk) 20:32, 29 November 2018 (UTC)