To CUPS or not to CUPS

James Robertson jameswrobertson at
Tue Jul 1 13:12:53 PDT 2003

John Gay wrote:
>>>You can't expect someone to jump to step 3 without first having done
>>>step 1 and step 2. _That's_ why it's justified to refer to Declan's hint
>>>when people are having Cups problems - because most people expect Cups
>>>to be the first step.
>>One small problem.  Not everyone has a locally attached printer.  Step 1
>>and 2 would never get a network printing process going.  Step 3 would
>>and so can CUPS.
> True, but then even those using networked printers, the printer is
> connected to a local PC somewhere, unless they can afford a network ready
> printer.

I guess I must be lucky.  The printers I buy are network ready.  This 
also makes for a more complicated environment.  I have a simple HP LJ6P 
at home direct attached.  Setting that up in CUPS was a breeze.
>>CUPS is not that hard.
> Yes it is (-; I had the experience of building two LFS systems on identical
> PC's, using the same printer. I used the same sources, followed the same
> steps. The first time, CUPS listed the correct driver for my printer by
> it's name, Xerox M750. The second time I spent three weeks trying to get it
> to connect to the same printer before I gave up. Obviously I must have
> skipped something the second time, but I still can't figure out where.

Sorry to hear that you're second attempt failed.  CUPS has done that to 
me as well.

>> You just have to read first and then do.  How
>>many times have we all seen where a person did not read anything first,
>>ran into trouble and then posted to the support lists (both lfs and blfs)?
> There are too many of these, but they should be pointed to the currently
> available hints first. After they have tried those, if they still have
> problems then they should come back to blfs for help.
>>John Gay mentions in another sub-thread that what we need is a true all
>>in one printing hint or document.  Run it the "lfs" way teaching the
>>issues.  There are also howto's and other docs available from other
>>quite smart folks on the net that we can tie to.  The essential
>>pre-reading hint does a good job of this.
> Yes there are other how-to's and hints, but they are scattered over the
> 'net, many of them are dated, and there are holes in the info. As I
> suggested, if the few people here who know UNIX printing got together and
> put together a generic printing document that covered most of the bases,
> and explained what was happening and why, this would help a lot of people.
> I, and many here obviously, would prefer to use CUPS for printing. Of
> course others would prefer something simpler like lpr or lprng. Some might
> even prefer a hand-scripted solution. I'm sure that a single document 'can'
> cater to all these needs, as well as explain the pro's and con's of each to
> help people decide which solution is right for them. At the moment there
> are 5 hints for printing plus the entries in the BLFS book. None of these
> actually compare the different printing solutions.

Agreed.  A seperate all inclusing LFS Printing doc would be very 
helpful.  Especially if it took the time to do some explaining on what 
the issues are and why things can be so complicated.  I am in for 
helping, I just can't lead the effort.

>>UNIX printing is not as easy as Windoze and the Mac.  M$ and Apple have
>>the upper hand here.  CUPS is a first attempt at making it easier and
>>when working can be very nice.
> Because they have a very limited system to work within. Therefore it's
> rather trivial to configure a single printing system that works within
> their system. UNIX is unique in that there are many different ways to set
> up anything, including printing. CUPS is one attempt to simplify this, but
> weither it's teh best solution waits to be seen.

True, a single system is easier than multiple. CUPS is an attemtp and 
gets better at each new version.

> Cheers,
>       John Gay
James Robertson | jameswrobertson at earthlink dot net
Reg. Linux User: #160424
Reg. LFS User:   #6981

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