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I'm considering withdrawing an arxiv paper (it has some errors, I think a fresh start is the way to go) but I'm confused about the warning that 'previous versions can still be retrieved' - will these be at least as difficult to retrieve as the (soon to be withdrawn) most recent version? (I looked at a few related questions but they didn't seem to address this specific question - e.g. Substantial update of an arXiv paper, Made an arXiv submission too early; How to minimize the damage?)

If the most recent withdrawn paper became harder to find that the older versions, that would not look like a good outcome to me. I doubt that the latter is the case (it would be silly) but I want to confirm this before going ahead. Thanks very much.

1 Answer 1

Here is an example of an arXiv paper that has been withdrawn.

You can see that if someone visits the non-version-specific URL, http://arxiv.org/abs/0812.0848, they will see a notice that the article is withdrawn. There is still a link to the previous version(s), which they can click on to see the original paper:

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If someone clicks on the link to the first version, or visits the version-specific URL, http://arxiv.org/abs/0812.0848v1, they will see the original paper without any withdrawal notice.

(You can see other examples of withdrawn arXiv papers with this Google query).