UNIX Sysadmin Resources – Printing

This content was originally created, collected, and maintained by Stokely Consulting.
As of May 2005, it is being hosted and maintained by Bill Bradford.

General Unix Printing Information:

comp.periphs.printers newsgroup FAQ is extremely useful. Covers impact, inkjet, laser, line, and thermal printers. Provides detailed information on printer languages, interfaces, drivers, supplies, troubleshooting, and specifications.
LinuxPrinting.org contains a wealth of resources to help with printing under GNU/Linux, the BSDs and commercial UNIX systems such as Solaris and OS X. The site has information on configuration, drivers, CUPS, tutorials, FAQs and all kinds of documentation, Foomatic, suggested printers and forums. Very large database of printer information.
Sun SPARCPrinter Error Codes because we got tired of hunting for the manual.

Unix Printing with Ghostscript: Information and HOWTOs:

Ghostscript, Ghostview and GSview provides FAQs, printer compatibility, software, and a wealth of other info. Includes a superb Ghostscript manual by Thomas Merz. Site compiled by Russell Lang.
How to Configure a Printer Supported by Ghostscript as a Postscript Printer Under Solaris by Alexander Panasyuk of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. This is a simplified procedure to connect any Ghostscript-supported printer to a Solaris 2.x machine. It details the way he got his Epson Stylus on the Sun’s parallel port to work with Ghostscript. Well written!
Ghostscript GUI and Solaris lp support is a GUI front-end to setting up Epson Stylus Color and Epson 9-pin printers from Solaris with Ghostscript.
Printing to an HP Printer from a SPARC covers setting up the HP Deskjet+ (speaking HP PCL) to serial ports using Ghostscript, printing both ascii and PostScript. The pages include info for Solaris 2.5 and SunOS 4.1.x. Written by Jeff Goldman of UCLA.
Using SPARCPrinter with Ghostscript covers the basics of getting this working on Solaris 2.6. Very useful, since Newsprint isn’t supported on Solaris 2.6.

Unix Printing Software:

Brooks Internet Software RPM Print Server will format any Unix text file and print to any Windows printer, regardless of paper size, tray selection, # of copies, paper orientation, or printer destination. RPM will translate ASA/FORTRAN control characters to PC printer commands on the fly.
COSprint output management system, runs on Unix and Windows, to provide robust print delivery. Also integrated with SAP R/3 and PATROL. From Open Systems Management Ltd.
CUPS – Common Unix Printing System is GPL software that uses the Internet Printing Protocol (IETF-IPP) as the basis for managing print jobs and queues. LPD, SMB, and AppSocket protocols are also supported. Network printer browsing and PostScript Printer Description ("PPD")-based printing options. CUPS also includes a customized version of GNU GhostScript and an image file RIP that can be used to support non-PostScript printers. System V and Berkeley command-line interfaces. Developed by Michael Sweet and Easy Software Products.
EasyCopy from autoGraph International is a complete image communication software package for UNIX. It provides screen capture, printing with support for PostScript, PCL, CGM, RTL, and other printers, image viewer and browser, file format conversions, support for vector graphics, E-mail interface, and more. Free trial download.
ESP Print Pro from Easy Software Products is a commercial UNIX cross-platform printing software package for Linux, Solaris (Sparc and Intel), HP-UX, Digital, and IRIX. It contains thousands of printer drivers. Many features, easy to use. Free 45 day trial license.

HP Printer Unix Information from HP:
(We got tired of always digging this information out of HP’s poorly-designed site.)
HP Jet Admin for HP printers on HP-UX, NetWare, OS/2, Solaris, SunOS, and Windows. Free software. See also the HP Jetdirect Print Servers, Web Jetadmin.
HP JetDirect Print Servers – HP-UX and Solaris, Simple Queue Configuration Using the HP JetDirect Printer Installer for UNIX How to create or configure a queue or lp destination using the HP JetDirect Printer Installer for UNIX.

LP Plus from Plus Technologies (a division of Digital Controls) is a highly scalable Print & View Management software for UNIX, Linux & NT operating systems. In a UNIX environment, LP Plus can co-exist with or replace UNIX lp. LP Plus has features like starting, stopping and redirecting print jobs and adding printers on the fly. WinPrint Plus is a Windows/Unix bidirectional file transfer utility.
mpage allows you to print multiple pages on a single sheet of paper. Public domain software from Mesa Consulting.
Pixel!PRINT from Mentalix is a commercial product which includes a page preview display that lets users scale and place images before printing. Postscript output can be sent directly to site-specific printers, including color Postscript devices. Pixel!PRINT supports interactive adjustment of output parameters such as margins, number of copies, landscape/portrait page orientation, and multiple page sizes. Runs on many popular Unix platforms.
PostShop from Vividata is a commercial product which connects to over 900 printers via serial, parallel, network, and SCSI interfaces, with and without PostScript. Supports many file formats. Automated installer for SunOS, Solaris, Solaris x86, SGI IRIX, IBM RS/6000 AIX, DEC Alpha OSF/1 Digital Unix, GUI interface, free trial from website. Color PostScript output to non-Postscript printers.
PPR is a free Unix print spooler expressly designed for operating PostScript printers. Many features, supports PostScript printers connected to parallel or serial ports or over the network through AppleTalk, LanManager, LPD, and TCP/IP protocols. It accepts jobs from SMB clients (Microsoft Windows), Macintosh, and Unix clients. Created by David Chappell at Trinity College.
slap is a free Unix print-driver program for Seiko Instruments’ SmartLabel family of serial port printers. Runs on at least Solaris 2.x, Linux. Written by Mike Spooner.
Taricon Xi-Text is a high-volume, networked print spooler and printing management system for UNIX and Linux servers. Client support for Windows platforms. Xi-Text is scaleable to any number of networked hosts and printers. Extensive configurability options, including user-defined filters, translators, archival systems, etc. Full control via web, character, GUI and API.
Ultrix Printcaps

LPR/LPD/SVR4LP Subsystem Replacements:

Solaris 2.x lpd ported from 4.3BSD reno to native Solaris 2.x, from Doug Hughes at Auburn University. Free source code for his lpr/lpd. Several useful utilities included.

Plotting – Freeware, shareware, public-domain, GPL software:

Dataplot runs on Unix, DOS, NT and more. Good documentation, lots of features. From the National Institute for Standards and Technology.
GNU plotutils for Unix systems. produces graphs and plots, many features, replacement for Unix utilities graph, plot, and spline. Supports many formats.
Orca is a tool for plotting arbitrary data from text files onto a directory on a Web server. Feature-rich and includes watching data file for updates, plotting the results of arbitrary Perl expressions, running under cron. Written in Perl and has a component to tie into Sun’s SE Performance Tookit.
Ploticus is a script-driven graphical data display package that can be automatically invoked from web servers and other programs. Works with flat ASCII or spreadsheet data sets to create plots and graphs. Produces PNG, GIF, SVG, JPEG, PostScript, EPS.

Plotting – Commercial software:

Mathematica sophisticated data analysis, calculation, technical programming environment and more. From Wolfram Research.
The Math Works, makers of MATLAB.
Research Systems, makers of IDL, ION, and ENVI data modeling tools.