Printer advice

Warren Block wblock at
Mon May 15 04:20:32 UTC 2017

On Sun, 14 May 2017, Chris Hill wrote:

> OP here.
> First, thanks to all for your responses.
> Second, let me clarify that I would really prefer to stay away from CUPS if 
> possible. I use lpr and printcap, with occasional printing from applications 
> whose names start with "gn." What I'm after is a printer that works out of 
> the box with minimal hassle.
> My main reason for hesitating on the HP M553n was that the specs claim 
> support for "HP postscript level 3 emulation," which seems to be not the same 
> thing as actual postscript.

Actual PostScript has license fees.  But HP's emulated PostScript is 
quite good and very mature.  It is unlikely to find a incompatibility.

> It would also be swell if I could avoid complications like hplip.

Since the printer accepts PostScript, you can avoid the complication of 
CUPS and hplip and all that stuff.  Send the PS file straight to the 
printer.  That can be done with various protocols: HP port 9100, LPD, 
even FTP.  To use some features of the printer like duplexing, it might 
be necessary to modify the header of the PS file.  This can be done with 
scripts that modify the file as it is sent to a print queue.  A couple 
of simple examples of such filters are shown in the printing chapter of 
the Handbook.  It would be nice to add examples of printing duplex or 
other options, although some of them vary from printer to printer.  CUPS 
uses the PPD file to get each printer's abilities, but I've never found 
the complexity worth it.

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