Configuring Remote Printers

Remote printers require slightly more configuration than local printers. Figure 10.5 shows a configuration window for a remote SMB printer; Figure 10.6 shows one for a remote Unix printer.

Edit Queue

Name and Aliases Queue Type Queue Type:

Driver | Driver Options Windows Printer (SMB Share)

Share:

User:

|hp

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Host IP:

Password:

|1 72.1 6.5.3

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Workgroup:

SYBEXj

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:igure 10.5: Configuring a remote SMB printer

Figure 10.6: Configuring a remote Unix printer

The Queue Type tab for a remote Unix printer has two fields to define the remote computer and the printer on that computer. The Server box requires the hostname of the printer server; the name must be written in a form that your system can resolve to an IP address. The Queue box requires the name of the remote printer as it is defined on the remote server. Note that this doesn't need to be the same as the name that you use locally as the queue name field. The Queue Name value defined on the Name and Aliases tab is your local name for the printer; the Queue value defined on the Queue Type tab is the remote server's name for the printer.

Figure 10.6: Configuring a remote Unix printer

The Queue Type tab for a remote Unix printer has two fields to define the remote computer and the printer on that computer. The Server box requires the hostname of the printer server; the name must be written in a form that your system can resolve to an IP address. The Queue box requires the name of the remote printer as it is defined on the remote server. Note that this doesn't need to be the same as the name that you use locally as the queue name field. The Queue Name value defined on the Name and Aliases tab is your local name for the printer; the Queue value defined on the Queue Type tab is the remote server's name for the printer.

The SMB printer entry in Figure 10.5 has five fields to define the remote printer:

Share Defines the SMB share name of the printer. This is the name that the remote server advertises for the printer, which is the same name you see when you browse the remote server.

Host IP Specifies the IP address of the server.

Workgroup Specifies the name of the workgroup to which the print server belongs. In the example, the workgroup is named SYBEX.

User Specifies your SMB username on the remote server. This is needed only if the server requires user-level security to access its printers.

Password Specifies the password required by the remote server to access its printers. This is combined with the username for user-level security, but it may be required even when the User field is empty by a server that has share-level security applied to the printer.

In addition to the five dialog boxes, the SMB printer configuration window has a check box for translating each line-feed character to a carriage return plus a line-feed. This is sometimes necessary when dealing with systems that run Windows software.

Figures 10.5 and 10.6 show configuration examples for remote Unix and SMB printers. Yet there are two more types of remote printers that can be used: JetDirect printers and Novell printers. Selecting JetDirect Printer from the queue type causes the system to ask for the IP address of the remote printer and the port number used to communicate with the printer. By default, JetDirect printers listen to port 9100, which should not normally be changed. TCP/IP networking and the basic Linux print commands are all you need to communicate with a JetDirect printer. Novell printers are slightly more complex.

To use a remote Novell printer, you must have the proper NetWare software installed on your system. On our sample Red Hat system, it means that you must install the RPM for the NetWare Core Protocol File System (ncpfs), and you should have the CONFIG_NCP_FS option set when you compile your Linux kernel. If printconf finds nprint (the Novell printer tool from the ncpfs package), you're asked to provide the name of the Novell server, the name of the printer on that server, your Novell username, and your Novell password on the Queue Type tab.

Clearly, in order to successfully configure a printer, you must know the make and model of the printer, what its capabilities are, and how it is connected to the system. Gather this information before you start the configuration process. Although none of this is difficult, it is not obvious unless you have the right information on hand.

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