Please test AirPrint on Natty and Oneiric

Till Kamppeter till.kamppeter at
Tue Jun 28 16:19:16 UTC 2011


as a first step into support for printing from mobile devices I have 
made Apple's AirPrint working on Natty and Oneiric. AirPrint is the 
method how Apple's iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch print via IPP. I want to 
ask all of you to test this feature.

What is AirPrint?

What do you need?

1. An iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch with iOS 4.2 or newer. Update your 
device via iTunes if needed. If no update gets offered to you, update 
iTunes first, if after that you do not get an update offered, your 
device is too old.

2. A computer running Ubuntu Natty or Oneiric. Please update your 
computer to the newest state of the art with the update-manager. For 
Natty you need to activate the natty-proposed repository.

3. A print queue on your computer. If you do not have a printer, create 
a pseudo printer with the following commands in a terminal:

cupsctl FileDevice=yes
lpadmin -p test -E -v file:/tmp/ -m drv:///sample.drv/generic.ppd 
-o PageSize=A4

When printing on this printer, you get a PostScript file /tmp/ 
Make it world-readable and display it with evince.

If you have a printer, every printer which works under Ubuntu does 
AirPrint with Ubuntu, not only the HP printers listed on Apple's web 
site (they do AirPrint directly, without computer).

4. WLAN. Switch the internet access of your mobile device to WLAN. Your 
computer must be in the same LAN (on the same router), but it does not 
matter whether it is connected via ethernet cable or WLAN.

How do you test?

1. On your computer start system-config-printer via System -> 
Administration -> Printing (GNOME Classic) or via Turn-off-button at the 
upper right -> System Settings -> Hardware -> Printing (Unity Natty) or 
via the command line (all systems including Unity Oneiric).

2. In system-config-printer choose Server -> Settings and activate 
"Published shared printers connected to this system". Click OK and then 
right-click on the icon of your print queue and choose Properties in the 
pop-up menu. In the Policies section of the dialog make sure that 
"Shared" is activated.

3. Make sure your mobile device is accessing your local network using 
WLAN and then open an application with printing functionality on it 
(like for example the browser or the photo viewer). Print something. The 
print dialog should show your print queue and allow some basic settings. 
Note that the Description/Info field and not the name of the queue is shown.

4. Check whether you get a correct printout.

5. Report your results here. If something goes wrong, report a bug on 

   This is the HOWTO on which my patches are based. On Natty and Oneiric
   you DO NOT need to create the Avahi service definition file described
   here and you DO NOT need to add a "ServerAlias *" line to cupsd.conf.
   The bug report which initiated my work on that problem.
   AirPrint only works with "ServerAlias *" in /etc/cups/cupsd.conf

Have a lot of fun with your first experience on mobile printing.


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