Thursday, October 12, 2006

Over the past few days, I've struggled with and successfully managed to get an HP printer working with CUPS. It turns out it works like this:

In slackware linux, or whatever breed of linux you have, there are scripts in the /etc/rc.d folder that do various things - like turn components on or off.

So for example,

To start CUPS - or Common Unix Printing Service, what you would do is type,

/etc/rc.d/rc.cups start

which starts cups, which you can then access to manage your printers through the internet or a web browser.

So what you put on your web browser's address bar is


(631 being the standard port for CUPS)

In the case of HP printers, there is a set of drivers (I guess that's what you call them) to compile which will create its own rc.d that you can get from sourceforge. They are listed in google as hplip (a search for hplip and sourceforge will probably get you what you need). Compiling was relatively easy though admittedly, I don't remember the steps...hint, try reading the README file that comes with the package, or the release notes from SourceForge.

once you have an rc.hplip you would execute the same style command to start it up

/etc/rc.d/rc.hplip start

if you refresh your page in CUPS after doing this, you will most likely, (provided your cache is clean) find that cups effectively discovers your hp printer.

Once cups has the printer "published" you will find that most of the applications you use in KDE start to pick up the printer and offer it to you as a choice. I found also that - kooka - the scanning program - recognized CUPS + HPLIP and that both the printer and the scanner on my F380 Printer/Scanner/Copier worked fine.