Brother HL-2030

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This is a small tutorial to make the printer Brother HL-2030 work on Arch. There are no drivers available from at the moment for this printer to work in CUPS. If you previously tried to install the printer in CUPS, remove it.

Foomatic: an alternative to the official drivers

Note that there is an alternative to the official, Brother-supplied drivers. I had problems with using Brother drivers so I think this is better and easier option. This method works also with HL-2035 printer. I don't know why but CUPS don't detect this printer automatically, but I described here how to add it by hand.

To install required software and drivers type:

# pacman -S cups foomatic-{db,db-engine} a2ps

Without a2ps there was only blinking led on my printer and nothing more.

If you have HL-2030 printer run:

# lpadmin -E -p HL-2030 -m foomatic:Brother-HL-2030-hl1250.ppd -v parralel:/dev/usb/lp0 

If HL-2035 run:

# lpadmin -E -p HL-2035 -m foomatic:Brother-HL-2035-hl1250.ppd -v parralel:/dev/usb/lp0

Your printer should appear in CUPS web page. It should be ready to print but default printer options are probably incorrect for you. To change them go to http://localhost:631

   * Go to Printers on top menu.
   * Select your printer(HL-2030 or HL-2035)
   * From Administration menu select Set Default Options
   * Configure your printer(I set A4 paper size, low toner saving and 600 DPI resolution)
   * Click on Set Default Options button
   * Done

Brother drivers

Brother supplies official linux drivers for the HL-2030. These, however come in the form of RPM packages. They can be installed on Arch in two ways: Either using the AUR PKGBUILD or manually following these instructions.

Download drivers

First create a temporary directory. Then you must download the official LPR drivers from the Brother website in that directory. Click here . This is a RPM archive. You have to download the cupswrapper file. Right here. This script creates the filters and PPD file for CUPS automatically. It's an RPM archive too.

Extracting the RPM files

Now you need a small script called rpmextract which allows you to get the files included in the RPM you've just downloaded. Log in as root and execute :

# pacman -S rpmextract

Extract both RPM files :

$ brhl2030lpr-2.0.1-1.i386.rpm
$ cupswrapperHL2030-2.0.1-1.i386.rpm

It should give you two directories : usr and var.

Editing files to make them work with Arch

Arch Linux uses its own file system organisation, so you have to edit some files. Use your favorite text editor (i.e. vi) to open the file named cupswrapperHL2030-2.0.1. If you created the temporary directory "tmp" in your home, it must be in /home/user/tmp/usr/local/Brother/cupswrapper. In this file, you must replace all the /etc/init.d/ occurences by /etc/rc.d/. Then you have to edit the file usr/local/Brother/inf/setupPrintcap, and replace /etc/printcap.local by /etc/printcap.

When it's done, copy all the files in their corresponding directories :

# cp -r /home/user/tmp/usr/* /usr
# cp -r /home/user/tmp/var/* /var

Installing the driver and printer

Go into /usr/local/Brother/cupswrapper/ and run the cupswrapper file :

# cd /usr/local/Brother/cupswrapper/
# ./cupswrapperHL2030-2.0.1

It will stop the cups daemon if it's running, and restart it. Now go to the CUPS page - http://localhost:631/ - and in the Administartion category, choose Manage printers. There you should see a HL2030 printer automatically installed and configured. Click to print the test page, and you can hear the sweet sound of your printer.

Compatibility with Brother HL-2035

Brother does not (yet) provide specific drivers for the HL-2035, but the HL-2030 drivers seem to work fine for this model as well. Use at your own risk, though.

Common Issues

If you have done all the steps above, and the printer will either not appear in your cups interface or if you want to print sth. the printer will just warm up and then not print anything, the following is reported to have helped:

  1. install the hal cups utils: pacman -S hal-cups-utils
  2. visit your cups interface, and under "administration" hit "find new printer". Surprisingly, it should be found. In the next step, choose the ppd file (found in /usr/share/cups/model/HL2030.ppd) and everything should work just fine ...
  3. make sure hal is running before cups is started