Red Hat 9, W2K and an OfficeJet V40

Set the printer up to print w/ RH9 locally last week when I installed the computer. No biggie. Very much point and click. Forgot that my Dad often printed to the shared printer. Today got hustled to his room and asked why the “printer didn’t work anymore”

Doh.

Hmm….

Used redhat-config-printer to share the print queue. Then used redhat-config-samba to set up SHARE level security and encrypted passwords. Used redhat-config-services to turn on smb.

(Yes I know you can do these by playing with the config files, but if you _have_ a GUI utility, might as well use it no?)

Walked to my Dad’s computer. Oooh…the printer shows up. Lets try print to it.

No response.

Umm…no good… Ok. Try to right click printer in windows and select the “Properties” tab. I get a message saying that there’s been an exception. Apparently something’s not playing nice and has been writing into addresses its not supposed to (the message involved quite a few memory address lcoations). Not a BSOD however, so I’m relieved.

Until I try to print in notepad.

“Notepad has generated an error. An error log is being created”

Huh? Ok… Now I find that copy/paste into Word (TM) gives me the same error. Hmm. Apparently the first error was so serious its toasting everything.

After a lot of troubleshooting I arrived at the following facts:

a) Windows keeps a list of printers with a supplied list of drivers.
b) Windows does not know anything about an OfficeJet V40
c) CUPS can operate in two modes. In one, the client driver is used and CUPS takes the raw output and simply passes it to the spooler. In the other, the client writes to PS, CUPS takes this PS and runs it through its own driver and prints it.
d) I wanted client side drivers to be used.

First, a few resources I found for those who are interested:

Printing with CUPS in Samba 2.2.x
CUPS providing print services to Windows clients
HOWTO Setup printing for Windows clients using SAMBA and CUPS
Adding printer drivers for Samba 2.2 to serve

My suspicion is the following. The RH 9 machine was listing the available printer as a HP Officejet V40, but I had not set the W2K machine to print to PS and hand it off to the RH9 machine. I was (foolishly) relying on the W2K machine’s client side drivers to handle that.

_HOWEVER_

Windows 2000 does _not_ have drivers for the Officejet V40. So, instead of notifying me of this (or at least warning me) it assumed that the RH9 machine would supply the drivers (not unreasonable). However, the property pages are completely unavailable since the RH9 machine is not a Windows machine. Which results in … unfortunate … behavior.

Solution:
Did you know that an Officejet V40 can masquerade as a Deskjet 520 if you are content with B/W printing only (which is all we use)? I set up the RH9 machine to share the V40 with the Deskjet 520 drivers. Then, using the “Add Printer” wizard I selected the HPDJ520 printer. Immediately a prompt popped up. Would I like to use the Windows drivers? Yes! Choose the HP Deskjet 520 and Finish off the installation. Print a test page and everything works as it should.

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