Setting up a printer

Setting up a printer

Last night I bought an HP LaserJet 2550L Colour Laser Printer from FutureShop.
The price had dropped $150 to $500, so it was time to move. I’d been looking at this printer for about
a month, after a friend bought it just before the holidays. The listing
on the FutureShop website is interesting. The one thing that the picture does not show is that the
front of the until must be opened up when feeding in paper. I’ll show you a photo later.

The HP website has more

As I write this, the printer is still in the box downstairs. I’ve run out of time tonight to set it up.
I plan to hook it up to my main development box and proceed from there. So far, this article is just
a teaser. I’ll send out another announcement when it’s completed.

7 thoughts on “Setting up a printer”

  1. Price is nice indeed.

    Let us know how good is the color printing on 20-24lb laser paper, the kind used in regular text printing, of a photograph (say for creating textbook/yard sale signs).

    Are you going to connect it via ethernet directly or a print server (but not via "regular" computer that would need to be up all the time)?


    1. Thinking of buying this printer as well, but I’ll just wait and see how Dan will set it up in a BSD environment first. At least that’s what I think he’ll do.
      Otherwise there isn’t much sense writing an article about it here, right? 😉
      So I guess it’ll fit in your "regular computer"-theory, parv.


      1. I *was* interested in making a printer available on the network which has only USB and/or parallel port connection(s), no ethernet jack, w/o keeping a "regular" computer on all the time (or waiting for both the printer and computer to boot).

        Well, i put my "Lexmark Optra E310", a PCL & PS2 emulation printer, on LAN yesterday night/this morning after finding out that "rp=LPT1" pair was needed in /etc/printcap for "SMC 7004ABR", a 4-port router endowed w/ one parallel port and one serial port. Without the value of "LPT1", nothing was being printed. Now i have to try if i can specify the IP address (of the router) in the printcap entry to keep /etc/hosts relatively clean.

        I was able to print from Windows (XP, ME, 98) already; i solved the last hurdle (yester|to)day such that i can print from Unix too. Whoopee!

        PS: It is quite possible that SMC 7400ABR’s document had something to say about printing from Unix, but i am pretty much sure it did not emphasize (enough) to specify "LPT1" as the queue name.


    1. I just bought a HP ALL-IN-1 PhotoSmart 2610. Under WinXP Pro/Home it’s great, but I would LOVE to have it accessable from my FreeBSD boxes. It’s connected to my network via Ethernet.

      So, I hope this is not just a tease…

    2. Dan has probably run into the same problems that I have with this exact printer.

      I’m running CUPS with Samba RAW printing for my Windows clients on FreeBSD 5.3-RELEASE-p5.

      The ulpt driver doesn’t jive with this printer at all. It would say "USB port busy" and I’d have to restart the printer after practically every job, and then go into CUPS, and re-start the printer. Not a good situation.

      I also got core dumps almost immediately when printing with the following kernel:

      include GENERIC
      options USB_DEBUG
      makeoptions DEBUG=-g

      I also changed the following lines in the driver code:

      int ulptdebug = 9;

      int usbdebug = 9;

      I wanted to sumbit a PR, but "real life" happened.

      I switched over to a parallel cable, and this little (well not so little) printer is now chugging along like a tank. Moral: don’t use this as a USB device in at least 5.3-RELEASE, use the parallel port.

      This has taken me a long time to get this far.

      (I haven’t had the time to get the post-script drivers running well under FreeBSD, the one for this printer that comes with ports/hpijs just spits out a black page when I print a test page — with the parallel cable.)

      1. The fix I found for this (with this exact printer) was to change the tray in the cups web admin thing from "default" to "auto". Bizarre, yes, but successful. Even our windows boxes are printing to it now.

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