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Canon printers and the Siemens Gigaset SE551 router Printers
Here's what's needed to setup a Canon USB printer as a network printer using the Siemens Gigaset SE551 router. First, on the router:
  1. Plug the printer into the router
  2. Log into the router's web interface (default is
  3. Select Advanced Settings » USB » Print Server
  4. Turn on Print Server and verify the router detects the printer
On the Mac:
  1. Open up the Print & Fax Syste Preferences panel
  2. Click the plus sign to add new printer
  3. Select IP in the toolbar, then set the following:
    • Protocol: Line Printer Deamon - LPD
    • Address: (or whatever address your router is)
    • Queue: lpt1 (in lower case)
    • Name: Whatever you want
    • Location: empty
    • Print Using: Don't use Generic PostScript Printer; select a driver to use. My Canon MP150 worked with the Canon PIXMA MP150 - Gutenprint v5.1.3 driver.
  4. Click Add
It took me forever to figure out that the queue must be called lpt1. Hope this helps!
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10.6: Fix some Kyocera printers in Snow Leopard Printers
Adding Kyocera printers connected via network (IPP) will cause a Printer paused status as soon as the first job is queued in Snow Leopard.

Reinstalling the drivers for 10.5, changing the owner:group of /usr/libexec/cups/filter/kyofilter to root:wheel, and choosing LPD in the Printer setup dialog will fix this problem.

[robg adds: I missed this hint in the queue when scanning for potentially time-sensitive Snow Leopard hints; if it's no longer applicable (i.e. there are new drivers out that fix the problem), please let me know.]
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10.6: View queued job counts and ink status Printers
Leopard's printer icon now has a badge, showing the number of jobs queued and the Print tab shows a low ink icon -- only when the ink is low, obviously -- that if clicked shows the ink levels.

[robg adds: I'm not sure if this works for all printers, or only certain printers.]
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10.6: Quick Look print jobs Printers
In the new printer apps in 10.6, there's a small arrow button (like in the iTunes Library) next to each print job. Click that button, and you will see a Quick Look preview of that file.

[robg adds: I imagine this could be very useful if your printer routinely has a huge queue; I typically can't see my occasional queued jobs because they disappear so quickly.]
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Print via Linksys print server PSUS4 and HP OfficeJet 5500 Printers
I finally got my Mac (Mac PowerPC G5 running OS X 10.4) to print via a Linksys print server PSUS4 to my HP OfficeJet 5510. I had to compile a number of different hints in order to do this, but wanted to make it easier for the next person.

First, find out the static IP address for your print server -- it's easy to find if you have a PC on your network (which I did; sorry I'm no help on how to figure it out with a Mac). Then do the following:
  1. Download the open-source Linux drivers for HP printers. Make sure you download the hpijs, Foomatic-RIP, and ESP Ghostscript packages.
  2. Install the Footmatic and Ghostscript packages, then restart. You will not be prompted to restart, but it is necessary before you can install the hpijs package.
  3. Install the hpijs package and restart again.
  4. Go to the Print & Fax System Preferences pane, and add a printer (click the '+' sign).
  5. In the Add Printer window, select IP at the top of the window, and use the following settings:
    • PROTOCOL: HP JetDirect-Socket
    • ADDRESS: -- this is the print server's IP address you figured out earlier
    • QUEUE: leave blank
    • NAME: Whatever you want
    • LOCATION: Whatever you want
    • PRINT USING: HP OfficeJet 5500 hpijs (the driver you downloaded)
    Click Add to add the printer.
Essentially, you've tricked the HP printer into thinking the print server is an HP JetDirect Print Server by setting it up this way. I can print perfectly -- not sure about scanning, though, as I never use it.
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Set the Epson Print Monitor to launch in the background Printers
My wife's Epson RX680 is used by everyone in the house via printer sharing, so she gets pretty annoyed when the Epson Print Monitor pops up suddenly on top of whatever she's working on. Today she made it annoy me enough so that I had to figure out a proper fix. The fix is to tell Launch Services to launch it in the background.

This requires editing a file within the application Epson Print Monitor, so be sure to back this application up first! The file to back up is /Library » Printers » EPSON » EPW » EPSON Printer

Once that's backed up, Control-click on it and choose Show Package Contents from the contextual menu. In the Contents folder, you'll see the Info.plist file; we're going to add a new key, LSBackgroundOnly, specifying that this should be true (i.e. launch in the background).
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10.6: Use a Dell 5100cn laser printer in Snow Leopard Printers
You've probably discovered that your Dell 5100cn color laser doesn't play well with Snow Leopard. Before you list the 5100cn on Craigslist, try this:

Delete your old Dell printer in the Print & Fax System Preferences panel. Install a new printer, but select the Mac-installed Samsung CLP-770 Series PS, and presto! You are back in business, complete with duplex printing and toner supply levels. Sweet!
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10.6: Install Canon printer drivers in Snow Leopard Printers
Because the Canon printer driver installation program will not recognize Mac OS X 10.6, you can't install your printer drivers even though Snow Leopard is a minor update.

To install your Canon printer drivers...
  1. Download the driver disk image.
  2. Mount the disk image and copy the installer package to your desktop.
  3. Control-click on the package and choose Show Package Contents from the pop-up menu.
  4. Navigate to Contents » Resources and delete the file InstallationCheck.
  5. Now double-click the package and install the drivers normally.
[robg adds: I'm not sure if future Canon updates in 10.6 will be included in Software Update or not -- that is one of the supposed features of Snow Leopard, but I'm not sure exactly how it will all work.]
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Create a 'PostScript to file' CUPS print queue Printers
I came across this page, an archive of a mailing list post written by Kurt Pfeifle, that gives detailed instructions on how to print PostScript to a file by creating a CUPS backend using a shell script.

It took me ages to find, so I thought it should be more prominently featured. Here's what Kurt has to say about the process:
You can enable a very simple file:/ backend by putting FileDevice Yes into cupsd.conf. However it will not allow raw printing of application/octet-stream files. And the second job will overwrite the first one (because you need to give a filename to the backend, in the device URI, like file:/tmp/print.prn)

You could write your own CUPS backend. Here are the rules for that:
  • make sure it can read from SDIN and write to STDOUT
  • make sure if called with zero arguments it responds with a message similar to the other backends (see how they do it)
  • make sure it takes the 5 or 6 arguments all CUPS filters and backends take in the same order, i.e. backendname job-id user title copies options [job-file]
  • put it into /usr/lib/cups/backend/ and restart cupsd (check if it is recognized with lpinfo -v)
You can write it in Bash, Perl, C, Python or whatever you like. A very simple "filewrite" backend looks like this:
if [ $# -eq 0 ]; then
echo "direct filewrite "Unknown" "Print any job to file specified in device-URI""
exit 0
cat $6 > $TARGETFILE
A more advanced one is here...
[robg adds: The code for the advanced backend is quite long, and I'm not certain of the copyrights, so I don't want to duplicate it in whole here. For those interested, please see the linked page for the more complex script. Note that I've formatted the quoted section above, for easier reading, but didn't change any of the content.]
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10.5: Fix HP DesignJet 130 under OS X 10.5 Printers
If you're unable to print to your HP DesignJet 130nr after upgrading to 10.5.6 (see this thread at Apple Discussions), here's the solution. First, you'll need to update your firmware:
  1. Open System Preferences » Print & Fax, then highlight hp designjet 130nr. Select Open Print Queue, then Utility. On the left side under Maintenance, choose Advanced Functions » Update Firmware.
  2. Do not click: "1. To see if a newer firmware version is available, click here." Despite the instructions from HP, and although you are connected to the internet, click this button instead: "If you do not have access to the Internet and would like to send a new firmware file to your printer, which you have received from HP, click here."
  3. In the next window, do click the Update Firmware button. Do not click the Choose File button. This is mis-labelled, it should say Choose Destination, but don't click it anyway. It merely downloads a useless text file.
  4. Do not interrrupt the firmware installation, or you will need a technician, parallel cable, and a PC. Wait until the HP 130nr printer shuts itself off.
  5. Turn the printer back on.
Next, you need to install the printer (and driver) again; it's already in the standard installation of Mac OS X 10.5:
  1. In System Preference » Print & Fax, delete the original 'hp designjet 130nr' printer.
  2. Run Disk Utility and Repair Permissions.
  3. Add a new 'hp designjet 130nr' printer in the Print & Fax System Preferences panel. You must use Bonjour, not AppleTalk or IP address.
That should fix the problem.
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