CUPS/Printer-specific problems

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Printer-specific problems and their solutions.


DCP 7020

See: Brother DCP-7020

Other Brother Printers

It appears that newer versions of the "file" package break the ability of many Brother printers to print from GUI applications. The solution seems to be to ensure that the "a2ps" package is installed.


MF 4150

This is required as some Canon printers apparently do not declare their specification correctly for kernel and libusb to recognize them

  • Do NOT blacklist usblp module.
  • Connect the printer

The printer should now be recognized by the CUPS Add printer dialog. If still having problems, try restarting CUPS.

  • Install UFRII driver (ufr2AUR from the AUR and complete the printer installation.

Pixma MP540/MP5**

To get the printer working you need to:

  • Blacklist usblp module and reboot.

If it's still not working execute the following command as root:

# ln -s /usr/bin/cifmp540 /usr/local/bin/cifmp540


Utility functions


This section explains how to perform some of the utility functions (such as nozzle cleaning) on Epson printers, by using the escputil utility, part of the gutenprint package.

With newer printers (like the CX3600/CX3650 or D88) you must first "modprobe usblp" to get escputil working. This creates the "/dev/usb/lp0" node (see the "--raw-device" flag below). Afterwards you have to "rmmod usblp", else the printer won't be recognized by CUPS (version 1.4.x). More here:

There is a escputil's man-page provides basic information, but it does not touch on how to identify the printer. There are two parameters that can be used to do so:

  • One is --printer: it expects the name used to identify the printer when is was configured.
  • The other is --raw-device: this option expects a path beginning with "/dev". If the printer is the only serial printer on the system, "/dev/lp0" should be its device node. For USB printers, it is "/dev/usb/lp0". If having more than one printer, they will have names ending in "lp1", "lp2", etc.

On to the maintenance options:

  • To clean the printer heads:
$ escputil -u --clean-head
  • To print the nozzle-check pattern (allows verifying that the previous head cleaning worked, and determining the heads need cleaning):
$ escputil -u --nozzle-check

If wanting to perform an operation that requires two-way communication with a printer, use the "--raw-device" specification and the user must be root or be a member of the group "lp".

  • The following is an example of getting the printer's internal identification:
$ sudo escputil --raw-device=/dev/usb/lp0 --identify
  • To print out the ink levels of the printer:
$ sudo escputil --raw-device=/dev/usb/lp0 --ink-level


This is a printer status monitor which enables to get the remaining ink quantity, to print test patterns, to reset printer and to clean nozzle. It use an intuitive graphical user interface. Package can be downloaded from AUR.


This is a GUI using escputil and cups drivers. It supports nearly all USB printer of Epson and displays ink quantity, can clean and align print heads and print test patterns. It can be downloaded from AUR

AcuLaser CX11(NF)

Install Epson-ALCX11-filter from the AUR. Restart CUPS and add the printer using the driver "EPSON AL-CX11, ESC/PageS Filter".

Both connections, USB and network, should work as expected.

Stylus SX125

Simply install gutenprint,

$ sudo pacman -S gutenprint

restart cups,

& sudo /etc/rc.d/cupsd restart

add the printer via the cups-webinterface and select the Epson Stylus SX115 Foomatic/gutenprint-ijs.5.2 driver. This should work fine.


Warning: This section involves installing packages without pacman. These directions should ideally be automated with a PKGBUILD.

"Source" code of the driver is available on avasys website, in Japanese, however it includes a 32 bit binary which will cause problem on 64 bit system. To install the printer:

  • Install the libstdc++5 ,on 32bit system, or the lib32-listdc++5 package (available in the multilib repository), on 64bit.
# pacman -S libstdc++5


# pacman -S lib32-libstdc++5
  • Install some dependencies
# pacman -S psutils bc
  • Download the source code of the driver (tar.gz) from avasys website and unpack it.
  • Compile and install the driver.
$ ./configure --prefix=/usr
$ make
# make install
  • Edit the path of pstops in /usr/bin/ according to this:
$ diff /usr/bin/ 
< rotator="" && test "$useRotator" = "on" && rotator="| pstops -q $pstops1 $pstops2"
> rotator="" && test "$useRotator" = "on" && rotator="| /usr/bin/pstops -q $pstops1 $pstops2"
  • Restart cups
# /etc/rc.d/cupsd restart
  • Install the printer through cups web interface, the printer was detected as a socket://XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX
  • Select the Esc Pages driver LP-S5000 (the one installed).
  • Print test page: OK

If you have any problems on a 64 system, some other lib32 libraries may be required. These instruction may be useful for other printer working with driver from avasys website.


C1110 (not model B)

Keep in mind that these directions assume that the printer is connected and listening on the network.

  • Install cpio and rpmunpack to later unpack the package:
# pacman -S cpio rpmunpack cups ghostscript gsfonts
  • Get the FX GNU/Linux driver here.
  • Unzip to /var/tmp (the directory is not important):
$ unzip -d /var/tmp
  • Continue extracting the file:
$ cd /var/tmp
$ rpmunpack fxlinuxprint-1.0.1-1.i386.rpm
$ gunzip fxlinuxprint-1.0.1-1.cpio.gz
  • Move the cpio DST file (for convenience):
$ mkdir /var/tmp/DST
$ mv fxlinuxprint-1.0.1-1.cpio /var/tmp/DST
  • Extract it:
$ cd /var/tmp/DST
$ cpio -id < fxlinuxprint-1.0.1-1.cpio
  • Filter the relevant files:
$ cd /var/tmp
$ find /var/tmp/DST -type f |cat -n
    1	/var/tmp/DST/etc/cups/mimefx.convs
    2	/var/tmp/DST/etc/cups/mimefx.types
    3	/var/tmp/DST/usr/lib/cups/filter/pdftopjlfx
    4	/var/tmp/DST/usr/lib/cups/filter/pstopdffx
    5	/var/tmp/DST/usr/lib/cups/filter/pdftopdffx
    6	/var/tmp/DST/usr/share/cups/model/FujiXerox/en/fxlinuxprint.ppd
  • Copy the files found in the previous step to /
Note: For the PPD use /usr/share/cups/model/fxlinuxprint.ppd
  • Go through "Manage Printer" and "Set Printer Options".
  • Print a test page (substitue color103 with the assigned printer name):
$ lpq -P color103
color103 is ready
no entries


Deskjet 700 Series

Printing does not work

The solution is to install the AUR package pnm2ppaAUR, which provides a printer filter of the same name for the HP Deskjet 700 series. Without this, the print jobs will be aborted by the system.

HP LaserJet 1010

A solution to make LaserJet 1010 work with CUPS may be to compile a newer version of GhostScript:

$ pacman -Qs cups a2ps psutils foo ghost
local/cups 1.1.23-3
    The CUPS Printing System
local/a2ps 4.13b-3
    a2ps is an Any to PostScript filter
local/psutils p17-3
    A set of postscript utilities.
local/foomatic-db 3.0.2-1
    Foomatic is a system for using free software printer drivers with common
    spoolers on Unix
local/foomatic-db-engine 3.0.2-1
    Foomatic is a system for using free software printer drivers with common
    spoolers on Unix
local/foomatic-db-ppd 3.0.2-1
    Foomatic is a system for using free software printer drivers with common
    spoolers on Unix
local/foomatic-filters 3.0.2-1
    Foomatic is a system for using free software printer drivers with common
    spoolers on Unix
local/espgs 8.15.1-1
    ESP Ghostscript

Setting LogLevel may also need to be set in /etc/cups/cupsd.conf to debug2, this way the logs will show how to circumvent minor issues, such as missing fonts. Search Google for n019003l filetype:pfb

The debug solution might work if getting errors similar to 'Unsupport PCL', etc. See: OpenPrinting database - Printer: HP LaserJet 1010

LaserJet 1020

Installation from AUR

Install the package foo2zjsAUR from the AUR and modify the PKGBUILD. Change the line:

./getweb all


./getweb 1020

If getting errors with incorrect md5sums, the md5sum of foo2zjs.tar.gz in the PKGBUILD should be changed to match the downloaded driver.

As a last step, add and configure the printer in the CUPS manager. The printer should be recognized automatically, and function for both root and regular users.

Manual installation

This section details the setup of the HP Laserjet 1020 by manually downloading and compiling the foo2zjs driver.

Warning: This section involves installing packages without pacman. These directions should ideally be automated with a PKGBUILD.

Only CUPS and GhostScript are needed to set up the HP Laserjet 1020.

# pacman -S cups ghostscript

The OpenPrinting database - Printer: HP LaserJet 1020 page outlines the support for this printer.

The foo2zjs driver will be installed as outlined on the project page: foo2zjs: a linux printer driver for ZjStream protocol.

Firstly, download the driver:

$ wget -O foo2zjs.tar.gz

And unpack it:

$ tar zxf foo2zjs.tar.gz
$ cd foo2zjs

The driver is now compiled:

$ make
$ ./getweb 1020
# make install
# make install-hotplug
# make cups

The usblp module is needed to upload the firmware to the printer, but the module must then be removed to allow printing or adding the printer to the system.

Ensure that the CUPS daemon is running and added to the /etc/rc.conf file:

# /etc/rc.d/cupsd start
DAEMONS=(... cupsd crond ...)

Now plug in the USB printer and turn it on. The printer will whirl, pause, then whirl once more as the firmware is uploaded. Now remove the usblp module:

# rmmod usblp

The printer can be added to the system with CUPS http://localhost:631/

Note: The usblp module must be removed after the firmware is loaded to the printer, and before any printing job is submitted.

The reason for this has been explained on the forum.

Firmware for HPLIP

Some printers may appear to have been correctly installed by CUPS, but fail to print. It may be that the necessary firmware needs to be downloaded by running:

# hp-setup -i

as root. This situation has been encountered with the LaserJet 1000 and LaserJet 1005.

Printer connected to an Airport Express Station

The first step is to scan the Airport Express station. It seems that there are different addresses depending on the model:

[root@somostation somos]# nmap

Starting Nmap 4.20 ( ) at 2007-06-26 00:50 CEST
Interesting ports on
Not shown: 1694 closed ports
5000/tcp  open  UPnP
9100/tcp  open  jetdirect
10000/tcp open  snet-sensor-mgmt
MAC Address: 00:14:51:70:D5:66 (Apple Computer)

Nmap finished: 1 IP address (1 host up) scanned in 25.815 seconds

The Airport station is accessed like an HP JetDirect printer. Note the port of the jetdirect service, and edit printer.conf. The DeviceURI entry should be socket://, followed by your station IP address, a colon, and the jetdirect port number.

# Printer configuration file for CUPS v1.2.11
# Written by cupsd on 2007-06-26 00:44
<Printer LaserSim>
Info SAMSUNG ML-1510 gdi
Location SomoStation
DeviceURI socket://
State Idle
StateTime 1182811465
Accepting Yes
Shared Yes
JobSheets none none
QuotaPeriod 0
PageLimit 0
KLimit 0
OpPolicy default
ErrorPolicy stop-printer

Problems may be resolved by removing foomatic and installing foomatic-db, foomatic-db-engine, foomatic-db-ppd instead.