Back in the old days before we moved to the current stackexchange platform, you could list users sorted by their user number. Is it still possible to get such a list? I'm trying to remember an old-time user who joined around the time I did, but I can't remember their name.


1 Answer 1


The first possibility that comes to mind is using SEDE. (Perhaps somebody knows how to find such a list directly on the site - but I am not really sure whether there is such a possibility. Answers to somewhat similar question on Meta Stack Exchange recommends SEDE, too: Sort users by joining date? and Is there a way to see a Stack Exchange site's oldest users?)

Naturally, the list of all users is going to be rather long - in fact, longer than 50000 results, which is the maximum for SEDE. It seems reasonable to limit this list in some way. You can notice that the linked query has three parameters. You can change Date1 and Date2 to restrict the list to the users who created the account only between the two dates. And you can use the third parameter to show only users above a certain reputation (which might be helpful if you know that the user in question posted enough posts to earn sufficient reputation). For example, here are the users above 1000 reputation points who started in 2009. You can easily remove the restriction on reputation.

Here is a similar list with addition of the first post. (Users who never posted anything won't be shown here - but I assume you're not looking for such users. After all, if we filter the list using reputation too, most users with non-negligible reputation should have at least one post.)

One should keep in mind that many users had several accounts which were merged at some point. And that many user accounts have been deleted over the years.

As pointed out by David Roberts, the above queries sort the users by id rather than by CreationDate - the sorting is not exactly the same. If you prefer ordering by CreationDate, you can simply change the ORDER BY clause at the end. Here is such a query. (If you have at most 5000 results, you can sort them by clicking on the corresponding column.)

Finding some information about deleted users is more difficult. Here is a list of users who posted at least one post (sorted by date of the first post) - but here you only see the userid. If you're lucky, you might be able to find the username for a specific userid - see this post for some options: Recognizing identifiable users changing user names. This is also a bit related to deleted users: Finding previously highly active deleted users.

It seems that the old interface used to have something like all users listed by the date joined. (It is even mentioned in this feature request: Bring back the "newest" tab on the users page.) However, the first snapshot of the list of the newest and the oldest users that I found in the Wayback Machine is from August 2011; so I am not sure whether you'd be able to dig something useful from there.

  • $\begingroup$ This is really helpful, thanks!!! $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 6, 2023 at 19:16
  • $\begingroup$ Note that the search query on the link "the users above 1000 reputation points who started in 2009." returns them sorted based on id, but that seems not to be the same as sorted based on date joined, for whatever reason. If you search for my name and look at the dates in a bracket around me, it's not monotonic. Easily fixed, but just pointing out that it's not answering the title of the OP's question, merely adopting the method mentioned in the post that used to work as a proxy. $\endgroup$
    – David Roberts Mod
    Commented Nov 6, 2023 at 22:16

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