> > Linux printer support still appears to be less than advertised.
A good place for information is <URL:http:\\www.linuxprinting.org>.
Quote:> > Are there any printers that are FULLY supported under Linux? By that
> > I mean,
> > all the features available under Windows or MAC are also available under
> > Linux, e.g. envelope printing, etc.
My HP LaserJet 4L prints fine under Linux (with one small operational
bug which is no more than a minor irritation). The Manual Feed and
Economode features can be selected in software, e.g. Open Office, and
are duly acted on by the printer. The printer doesn't have an Envelopes
feature. I have no experience of other printers but would expect that
most can be persuaded to work similarly.
Quote:> If a printer supports PostScript or PCL
> (Hewlett-Packard's Printer Control Language), its a good
> bet that there is a Linux driver. Check the
> printer-HOWTO. I believe it lists supported printers.
> Check manufacturer web sites for technical details on
> printer driver support. All but the cheapest usually
> support some version of PCL.
When you set up CUPS or LPRng, they offer you a list of printer models
to choose from and, for each printer model, a list of drivers. It'd be
worth looking at the list before you acquire your printer to see if your
chosen model is included. As for drivers, the only way I know of to pick
the right one is to try them and choose the best.
What is happening behind the scenes (I think) is that the setup
procedure is identifying the Postscript Printer Description (PPD) file
for your printer/driver combination. The PPD file provides information:
(1) for the application - telling it what options it should offer
in the 'printer options' or whatever dialogue - this is where
your envelope feeding etc comes in; and
(2) for the backend of the spooler - telling it what driver and
options it should use for translating the Postscript output
generated by the aplication into something the printer can
understand (PCL or whatever).
Another way of getting a PPD file is to use the generator provided on
the linuxprinting.org site to produce one.
Quote:> The features that you mention are a function of
> software. Open Office might have built in support for
> envelopes. I would write a simple program that would
> use TeX/LaTeX for the formatting. Or maybe troff or
> Postscript; you have many choices.
One thing you need to be aware of is that Open Office and Star Office
don't use the system's PPD files, they have their own and the set of
printers they support is a bit limited. For example, the HP LaserJet 4L
wasn't included; with the nearest substitute, Manual Feed and Economode
This can be solved by copying a suitable PPD file into the place where
Open Office keeps its own PPD files and renaming it with a suitable name
(OO seems to expect PPD files to end in a '.ps' extension). Once I'd
done this, it was included in the list that OO offered when configuring
the printer, and selecting it had the desired effect.