General category impossible to make invisible?

Hi there!

I was wondering: I have disabled the option to allow users creating topics without a category, so the general category is not useful anymore. I don’t want it there precisely to avoid having a "hotchpotch category.
However, it won’t let me get rid of the category and even worse, it just appears and disappears spontaneously in my forum so I have been forced to at least make it the last in line to minimize the issue.
Is there a way to get rid of the General category forever more? If not, could it be implemented once the “no-topics-without-category” option is selected?

Best regards.

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Perhaps re-categorise topics from general category and delete it?


Or make the general category private?

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I am afraid I have already done that.
There are no topics nor pins in the General category, but it is still listed and when I try to delete it the button is blocked and there is an information text saying as follows:
“This category is special. It is intended as a holding area for topics that have no category; it cannot be deleted.”
And so, the category comes and goes at will. Sometimes it is there, sometimes it is not.

But thanks, anyway.

Neither an option. There is this text saying:
“This category is special. It is intended as holding area for topics that have no category; it cannot have security settings.”

Have you removed all topics from “uncategorized”?


I suppose?
I mean, uncategorized topics should appear inside the General category as far as I understand and there aren’t any in there.


Wait. You keep mentioning a “General” category that meets the description of the “uncategorized” category. If so, you wouldn’t be the first, only (or last :slightly_frowning_face: ) that was compelled to not leave that category alone. You want to not mess with it, simply leave it unused. Do not try to repurpose it, do not try to delete it.


I really think that it should be disabled by default. I understand that having it saves some frustration from requiring One More Thing to create a topic, but it mostly just makes me feel silly, stupid, or careless when I forget and post in uncategorized.

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Yeah, indeed. I meant the “Uncategorized” category, I just renamed it, sorry for not being clear on that. Why does it even exist in the first place? Is this like an urban legend in Discourse?

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You don’t see the description except on the categories page


Topics that don’t need a category, or don’t fit into any other existing category.

I can’t recall the setting name ATM, but the category can be turned off as it were, forcing members to select a category when creating a new topic. Compare here with SitePoint



can’t recall the setting

found it — allow_uncategorized_topics

Sort of. My understanding is that not requiring users to select a category when creating a topic saves them a step, as it can be confusing or frustrating to have to choose a category, especially if you have lots of them. It sounds like a great idea. In practice, however, I think that uncategorized is often confusing for admins, who try to repurose and/or rename it and then ask questions about it that don’t make much sense. For example, they refer to it by some name that they made up rather than calling it uncategorized and they don’t remember renaming it in the first place, and they can’t find it in the settings because they don’t realize that it’s special and has some other name. :wink:

I think a better solution than uncategorized would be to instead have a default category, which would have the advantage of not being an un-category.

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At SitePoint starting a topic in Uncategorized is not possible. We have a “do the best you can, and you can always ask to have it moved” policy. This does result in topics getting started in less than appropriate categories. Our Mentors (staff, but not moderators) and a few other members are Trust Level 3 and AFAIK, moving topics has never been unmanageable.

Seems the textarea placeholder text could be edited to something more imperative / friendly if so desired. eg. “you MUST choose a category”, “what you think is the best fit” etc.

We have had at least one member that was intentionally starting topics in inappropriate yet more active categories. When moved, squawked “I want it to get answers right away”. Arrgghh, I digress.


I turned that option off in order to force users choosing a category but yet, the Uncategorized category will not disappear and even worse, sometimes it appears and some times not.
That is my issue: why can’t I get rid off it if users are forced to choose a category and thus, it has no reason to exist?

I guess because it’s both unnecessary and not easy to do–the solution is dead simple–don’t use it. Do you know where code elsewhere depends on it? Would you want to do whatever changes might be needed and maintain those changes? Personally, not me.

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I think it’s because Admins (and moderators?) can create topics without setting a category. Because they are admins and are trusted to know what (not) to do.

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