Home > Linux > Linux Gazette May 2003, Issue 90 Released Linux Gazette May 2003, Issue 90 Released Eugenia Loli 2003-05-02 Linux 29 Comments The 90th issue of Linux Gazette is out and it includes articles like “Software development for a Sharp Zaurus SL-5500 Linux PDA“, “The CUPS printing system” and “Programming with User Mode Linux“. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 29 Comments 2003-05-02 9:04 pm I went from hating printer configuration to loving it because of CUPS. It’s so easy, i’d argue even easier than windows printer configuration (through my experiences, i’m not flaming windows printer config, its good). Adding a printer on my network is something i did recently, i expected it to be a hell of a task, took me 4minutes, and i could do it now in less. It just works. The only thing i’ll complain about, is the quality, its alright, but FAR from being excellent. My printer (HP Deskjet 842C) is a lowend printer, but man does it print out nice images in windows. The images in linux are “alright” i guess, but far from the quality i get when its attached to a windows box. 2003-05-02 9:24 pm It took you 4 minutes to set up a printer??!!! And now it prints with low quality??!! No wonder no-one’s using Linux for anything except 486 servers doing nothing in geek closets. rofl. Windows 2003 server is plug and play. I plug in my printer, and it works, and the quality is great. Why are you wasting your time with this Linux shit? 2003-05-02 9:39 pm I’m not even gonna touch Igapuz’s 486 server comment, but as far as printer configuration, in Windows XP (which was already installed), I plugged my printer in, a little dialog box popped up in the task tray letting me know it was ready to go – no config necessary at all. Now, I don’t know for sure how Linux does it (maybe the same way?), but you can’t get much easier than that 2003-05-02 9:50 pm Not that its that relevant to the article, but in response to the comments above, configuring a _network_ printer securely generally takes more than plugging it into the client machine on any flavour of Windows that I have used. CUPS is an impressive piece of software, which allows for extremely complex network printer configurations, with classes, etc… and all manageable through a web browser from whatever remote location you care to allow in the cups.conf file. It also keeps track of (and archives) all print jobs which can easily be traced back or rerun from the history. Anyone who blatantly denigrates this FREE software is obviously a pathetic troll. BTW, if you have an OSX box, try going to http://127.0.0.1:631 Have fun 2003-05-02 10:05 pm My LaserJet 6L will not install under Windows. I get an error “RPC server unavailable.” Um…RPC? To print? I checked technet and it’s a bug alright, but the MS solutions just don’t work. So if I boot into XP, EVERY SINGLE TIME, I get an error and another failed attempt to install it. I’ve fooled with settings, drivers, and system files, but no go. In Linux, I boot and it works. Period. CUPS is awesome. 2003-05-02 10:24 pm Euginia, Can you please mod this and Igapuz’s messages please. He’s a troll on the loose! Thanks 2003-05-02 10:28 pm I liked his comment about the “DOS” prompt. Talk about insulting Unix/Linux. At least call it what it is. P.S. Her name is Eugenia! 2003-05-02 10:29 pm Sometimes its plug and PRAY!!! 2003-05-02 10:37 pm Anyone who blatantly denigrates this FREE software is obviously a pathetic troll. I was not, in any way, attempting to ‘denigrate’ any free software (CUPS). In fact, I don’t even use it. I was merely responding to someone who said printer configuration was probably easier in Linux, by asking – what it easier than (in my case) plugging something in and having it work? 2003-05-02 10:49 pm I didn’t think you were denigrating CUPS at all. The comment was in reference to the obvious troll further up … 2003-05-03 12:00 am but you can’t get much easier than that I think he was referring more specifically to network printers. I don’t know about most people, but in my household we have 4 computers and one printer. So network printing is a must. I have set up network printing in both windows and linux. It was about the same (enter ip address of printer, select driver, blah blah blah). 2003-05-03 12:09 am Now where to start… To the troll…get a life. I wont even respond to your bullshit comment. To the people laughing at the 4minutes…thats to set up a secure network printer. When the 4 minutes began i had no clue what i was doing, when the 4 minutes ended i had it set up so that just the boxes i wanted to could print, and even fewer could administer the printer itself. One thing I’ve never gotten about windows network printing, is how the clients require the driver also. It was like that as late as w2k, i hope they’ve fixed that since, cause its a bitch to set up a network printer in even a small office when you have to do that. 2003-05-03 1:42 am I agree that CUPS is a step above what came before. A beautiful combination is a networked PS printer. Stick that printer were it’s desired rather than, how long is the printer cable. Printers are cheap. Print servers are cheap, and networking gear is cheap. Throw in wireless and things can get even better.  Of course I don’t have to remind this crowd about Win, and GDI printers. They make nice paperweights though. 2003-05-03 2:45 am How much does Win 2k3 cost??? Linux crap??? Seems like I hear some idiot talking about how good windows is… Blah, I bet your wife is cheating on you…they always cheat on ms fan boyz. or maybe your girl-friend… 2003-05-03 2:48 am “they always cheat on ms fan boyz. or maybe your girl-friend…” And what are you then, St. Troll? Don’t bite it if you don’t like it… 2003-05-03 8:25 am Printer configuration in Windows easy? Just plug it in and it works? Yeah right! Last week I bought an Epson Stylus C82. I plugged in the USB cable – nothing happened. I had to spend 20 minutes following the installation instructions to install drivers from the CDROM! No people, Windows is overrated. Either you have a plug-and-play printer that’s supported by Windows by default or you’re just lying. I’m guessing the latter is more likely. 2003-05-03 8:31 am I had to spend 20 minutes following the installation instructions to install drivers from the CDROM! Next, next, next, next, finish, restart. . How long would it take to install the linux drivers off that CD? ;-). Just kidding, but seriously, manufacturer support is a BIG plus for windows. I’m constantly impressed by the support that Linux is now receiving, but there is still quite a ways to go before I can just grab the printer I want, not one I know is supported in Linux. Just some food for thought.. 2003-05-03 10:10 am > “Next, next, next, next, finish, restart. ” Nope, more like –>, wait, turn printer on, next, next, finish, next (another app is installed), next, next, finish, software failed to load ink cartidges, abort, reboot, try again, fail, try again, fail. Reboot to Linux, download Linux drivers, works. Reboot back to Windows, finally works. I’m not kidding you, this is what actually happened. The printer refused to load the ink cartridges (even tho I checked if the cartridges are placed OK and restarted the printer a few times). The Epson “support” site didn’t support me at all, all I got is “The requested information is not in our knowledge base. Thank you for using Epson Support.” I was lucky and got my printer working. But this is waaaay too much work for Joe Average! Again: Windows is overrated! 2003-05-03 1:01 pm Sounds more like a problem with the Epson softare and not Windows itself to me. Anyway, CUPS is a very nice piece of software. 2003-05-03 3:49 pm I can print on a printer on another computer on my network, I didn’t have to set up any printer, it was just available after installing windows xp. That is what I call easy, and for a home network, that is just perfect! 2003-05-03 5:35 pm I can print on a printer on another computer on my network, I didn’t have to set up any printer, it was just available after installing windows xp. That is what I call easy, and for a home network, that is just perfect! I am well aware of how that works under windows, but you are misunderstanding. That printer is not a “network printer” per se. It doesn’t have its own IP. It is just a printer that happens to be connected to a computer on the network. When you are wanting a serious network printer with good rules and restrictions on who can print and administer you have to set it up differently. 2003-05-03 6:24 pm Linux should support printer as well as winmodem driver. It supports most Hp, canon, epson printers dating 1-2 year back even more. But it does not support for my new Hp printer (3320 series). I have winmodem and as usual it has no support for linux. Even windows doesn’t recognise my Winmodem. But atleast i have a driver for windows. 2003-05-03 6:36 pm So, quick question pertaining to an earlier comment: what is wrong with a WinPrinter? Or, for that matter, a WinModem? People are always claiming (accurately) that computers have largely gotten more powerful than is required for most of the things we currently do with them on a daily basis. So why in god’s name is it a bad idea to save me money by letting my excess processing power replace hardware that I would otherwise have to buy? My folks’ WinModem (free at Fry’s) runs great on their 233, and my Lexmark printer runs just fine; I can’t imagine somehow my output would look better if it had its own brain in hardware. Am I simply missing something? (I have a feeling that the answers I’m going to see will be of the “because a WinDevice won’t run in Linux!” variety. Great…so it’s somehow better to buy dedicated, specialized hardware for various needs than to take advantage of the general-purpose nature of software? You might as well argue that I’d be better off with special hardware to decode MP3s, special hardware to run Office, and so forth…) 2003-05-03 7:18 pm 1) Winmodems don’t have LEDs. It’s rather annoying to find that no calls have been getting through and that your telephone bill has grown because you’d left your modem on-line without thinking about it. 2) What about the graphics card? Shouldn’t it be handled by the CPU? And the network card? 3) The interface is undocumented, which make unintelligent devices difficult to control unless you happen to have the particular driver. Quite often, the interface is not only undocumented, but also unstandardised. A Hayes compatible modem works everywhere. Your host-controlled hardware may well stop working because the software will no longer work. Look att all those nice winprinters which won’t work with modern Windows releases. This is not just a Linux problem. 4) It’s a silly way of saving money. You save a euro or dollar or two by leaving out the processor on the device, and instead add that cost to your CPU. Which will contribute even more to warming your house, of course. You don’t save any money worth mentioning. Someone is saving money, but it’s the kind of money which is only relevant for the manufacturer, pumping out a million modems and thus saving two millions on that production line. Once you start making something in Taiwan, the cost differences are negligible. ATA-IDE is a lovely example. It started out as a bunch of cheap buffers on an ISA slot, which of course is cheaper than SCSI. But today, ATA is just as complex as SCSI in its implementation, while still not as powerful or versatile. What’s making SCSI so much more expensive are the small production runs and the high-end market. Otherwise, the added intelligence doesn’t make much of a monetary difference once Winbond or Lee Wong Electronics, Ltd. start spewing out a million units a day of just about anything. 2003-05-03 7:47 pm Ussually not a Mr. Troll, but this time yes, and I had fun trolling, and yes, he is cheated… 2003-05-04 2:34 am Hahaha, network printing being “plug and play” under Windows is so laughable that I nearly snorted Mountain Dew all over my keyboard. Last time I went home, my parents spent an _hour_ trying to make networked printing work right. And these are technically adept people with CS degrees. Let’s see, another time, at my girlfriend’s lab, they spent an hour trying to set up their LAN printer (ie, non-shared) to work properly. CUPS may or may not be the cat’s ass when it comes to printer configuration, but I can certainly tell you, Windows (9X or 2K/XP) is _not_ an intuitive environment to set up networked printing in. Perhaps at some point I’ll try to set CUPS up on my laptop to print on my desktop over the wireless network… that’d be fun. -Erwos 2003-05-04 3:54 am linux boxes don’t do anything you don’t tell them to do explicitly, some see this as an advantage and some just don’t get it. 🙂 2003-05-04 9:50 pm 1) Winmodems don’t have LEDs. It’s rather annoying to find that no calls have been getting through and that your telephone bill has grown because you’d left your modem on-line without thinking about it. Ok, so you think that LEDs are worth $40 or so. You’re free to make that decision. I, however, don’t. 2) What about the graphics card? Shouldn’t it be handled by the CPU? And the network card? This is ridiculous. Offloading the work of the graphics card and the network card would dramatically lower the performance for each of them. Modems, however, are so slow anyway that the CPU can easily handle it. Look att all those nice winprinters which won’t work with modern Windows releases. This is not just a Linux problem. Sure, if the hardware vendors don’t support it, that could lead to problems. Again, I think the risk is worth it (especially when I could always buy another winmodem or winprinter for cheap). 4) It’s a silly way of saving money. You save a euro or dollar or two by leaving out the processor on the device, and instead add that cost to your CPU. This doesn’t make any sense. At Fry’s, I have never seen a “real” modem cost less than $40, and they’re often more. By contrast, for the various computers I’ve assembled, I’ve never spent more than $10 max on a winmodem. And how on earth does it cost me more for the CPU? As I mentioned in my other post, even my parents’ 233 works great with their winmodem. The simple fact is that you cannot buy a CPU today that isn’t more than capable of handling it. Which will contribute even more to warming your house, of course. Are you claiming that the tiny amount of CPU power needed to run the winmodem is going to significantly increase the heat of the CPU? You don’t save any money worth mentioning. Free vs. $40 sounds like it’s worth mentioning, to me, at least. What’s making SCSI so much more expensive are the small production runs and the high-end market. Otherwise, the added intelligence doesn’t make much of a monetary difference once Winbond or Lee Wong Electronics, Ltd. start spewing out a million units a day of just about anything. What was the point of this? I can walk to Fry’s and buy a “real” modem for $40 (often more), or I can spend less than $10 and buy a winmodem. That’s what matters to me as a consumer. 2003-05-05 1:43 am This arguement sure is something to yawn about.