I often quote the documentation of the software I am writing about on StackOverflow. Typically, I use the short phrase:

Per documentation:

Also serving as deep link to the quoted passage, followed by the quote.

Recently somebody edited a post of mine to make this:

Per the documentation:

Not the most important detail, but now I wonder which is more correct. I like to be brief, so if either is correct my preference is obvious.

I am typically referring to the official documentation of the project, not just some documentation, if that should matter.

  • I think per documentation sounds better. – Misti Jul 8 '15 at 17:39
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    I always avoid "per" in this sense. It is too jargon-y for my taste. I would just use a label or header before a block quote ("The documentation:"), or I would write "according to" or the like. – phoog Jul 8 '15 at 19:26
  • Another approach is to simply post your content (block quote if it's an actual extraction from the documentation). Directly underneath, you can put "Source: <sourcename>" or make the sourcename a link. But if you prefer your style, you can use "from the documentation", which is a little more natural sounding. – fixer1234 Jun 4 '17 at 4:55
  • Why do you use "per" at all? What is it supposed to mean here? It strikes me as either redundant or wrong. – David Jun 4 '17 at 17:47

In my opinion, saying "Per the documentation" sounds more like a reference to THE documentation, that is OFFICIAL documentation. Saying, "Per documentation" carries just a hint of "some kind of documentation somewhere."

So I'd recommend "Per the documentation".

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