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Setting Up a Print Server Overview Sharing printers is a good way to save money and make your printing more

efficie nt. Very few people need to print all the time, but when they do want to print s omething, they usually need it quickly. Setting up a print server can save money by eliminating the need for a printer at every workstation. Some of those savin gs can be used to buy printers that can output more pages per minute or have hig her-quality output. You can attach printers to your Red Hat Linux system to make them available to u sers of that system or to other computers on the network. You can configure your Red Hat Linux printer as a remote CUPS or LPR Linux printer, a Samba printer, o r a NetWare printer. With Samba and NetWare, you are emulating Windows and NetWa re servers. This chapter describes configuring and using printers in Red Hat Linux. It focus es on Common UNIX Printing Service (CUPS), which is the recommended print servic e for the current version of Red Hat Linux. To configure CUPS printers, this cha pter focuses on the Red Hat Printer Configuration window (redhat-config-printer command). Once a local printer is configured, print commands (such as lpr) are available f or carrying out the actual printing. Commands also exist for querying print queu es (lpq), manipulating print queues (lpc), and removing print queues (lprm). A l ocal printer can also be shared as a print server to users on other computers on your network. Choosing CUPS or LPRng Print Services Choosing CUPS or LPRng Print Services Prior to the current release of Red Hat Linux, there were two major printing ser vices offered with Red Hat Linux: CUPS and LPRng. Although LPRng has been droppe d from the distribution, the LPRng package is still available and still can be u sed with Red Hat Linux. The following sections discuss some of the characteristi cs of those two services. Common UNIX Printing Service CUPS has become the standard for printing from Linux and other UNIX-like operati ng systems. Instead of being based on older, text-based line printing technology , CUPS was designed to meet today's needs for standardized printer definitions a nd sharing on IP-based networks (such as the Internet). Here are some features o f CUPS: IPP At its heart, CUPS is based on the Internet Printing Protocol ( pp), a standard that was created to simplify how printers can be shared over IP networks. In the IPP model, printer servers and clients who want to print can ex change information about the model and features of a printer using HTTP (that is , Web content) protocol. A server could also broadcast the availability of a pri nter, so a printing client can easily find a list of locally-available printers. Drivers CUPS also standardized how printer drivers are created. The idea was to have a common format that could be used by printer manufacturers that could work across all different types of UNIX systems. That way, a manufacturer only had t o create the driver once to work for Linux, Mac OS X, and a variety of UNIX deri vatives. Printer classes Using printer classes, you can create multiple print server entr ies that point to the same printer or one print server entry that points to mult iple printers. In the first case, multiple entries could each allow different op tions (such as pointing to a particular paper tray or printing with certain char acter sizes or margins). In the second case, you could have a pool of printers s o that printing is distributed. This would decrease the occurrence of congested print jobs, caused by a malfunctioning printer or a printer that is dealing with very large documents. UNIX print commands To integrate into Linux and other UNIX environments, CUPS of fers versions of standard commands for printing and managing printers that have been traditionally offered with UNIX systems. (See the "Switching printing servi ce" section for information on how to have CUPS take over these standard command s.)

The Printer configuration window (redhat-config-printer command) lets you config ure printers that use the CUPS facility. However, CUPS also offers a Web-based i nterface for adding and managing printers. Configuration files for CUPS are cont ained in the /etc/cups directory. In particular, you might be interested in the cupsd.conf file (which identifies permission, authentication, and other informat ion for the printer daemon) and printers.conf (which identifies addresses and op tions for configured printers). Line Printer New Generation The LPRng print service is an extended version of the old Berkeley UNIX LPR prin t spooler facility. It was designed to work in networked computing environment, where multiple printers and queues needed to be managed. While still supporting older printing commands (lpr, lpq, lprm, and others), it added many administrati ve and security features (such as support for Kerberos and PGP authentication). If you have used LPRng in previous releases of Red Hat Linux, you should conside r switching to CUPS. By default, the procedures in this chapter use CUPS as the underlying print service. Switching printing service CUPS is the preferred alternative to LPRng in Red Hat Linux. CUPS is based on th e Internet Printing Protocol, whose purpose is to standardize printing service a cross all UNIX platforms (including Linux). CUPS supports many of the same interfaces that are in LPRng. Thus, if you decide to replace LPRng with CUPS, you can still use the following commands to print a nd manage documents: cancel or lprm Cancels a print job. lp or lpr Prints a document. lpc Controls print service operation. (Although in CUPS it only lists printer st atus.) lpq Views print queues. lpstat Views the status of the print service.