Printing Files at the LinuX Cluster

Print Commands
Printer Status and Spool Information
Line Printer Control
The Printer Refuses to Work


The default system printer at the LinuX Cluster is the HP Color LaserJet 3000 TDN network printer called Goya (located in room 2S24, ITP 1st Floor).

Model Printer Name
(for lprnew)
Printer Language RAM Print
Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e
(Room 2S24, ITP 1st Floor)
Adobe PostScript 3
PCL 6, PCL5c, PDF 1.7
2 GB 1200 dpi
Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e
(Room 3GAN, ITP 3rd Floor)
Adobe PostScript 3
PCL 6, PCL5c, PDF 1.7
2 GB 1200 dpi
HP Color LaserJet 3000 DTN
(Room 2S24, ITP 1st Floor)
(ps, raw, ps2c)
HP PostScript Level 3
PCL 6, PCL 5c
256 MB ImageREt
(t, ts)
unformated ASCII Text
HP Color LaserJet 5550 DN
(Room 3Gan, ITP 3rd Floor)
(psc, rawc)
HP PostScript Level 3
PCL 6, PCL 5c, PDF 1.3
160 MB ImageREt
HP LaserJet 2300 tdn
(Room 2S20)
(ps2, raw2)
PostScript Level 3
PCL 6, PCL 5e, HP-GL/2
48 MB 1200 dpi
(t2, ts2)
unformated ASCII Text

To send one or more files located at any LinuX site to the system printer, use the lpr, the lprnew, the gtklp or the xpp command.

Note: For computers with OS Windows (8, 7, Vista, XP and 2000) you can install the following printers via creating a new (local) TCP/IP port:

Model Host Name
IP Address
Printer Language RAM Print
Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e
(Room 2S24, ITP 1st Floor)
Adobe PostScript 3
PCL 6, PCL5c, PDF 1.7
2 GB 1800 x 600 dpi
1200 x 1200 dpi
Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e
(Room 3Gan, ITP 3rd Floor)
Adobe PostScript 3
PCL 6, PCL5c, PDF 1.7 
2 GB
1800 x 600 dpi
1200 x 1200 dpi 

Drivers for the Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e printer/scanner/copier for Windows (8, 7, Vista, XP and 2000) and Mac (OS X 10.x) can be found at the ZID Bigshare-server here. An instruction for installing the Konica Minolta Bizhub C364e printer on Mac (OS X 10.9 or newer) created by Laurin Ostermann can be found here.

Windows (XP and 2000) postscript drivers for the HP LaserJet 2300, the HP Color LaserJet 5550 and the HP Color LaserJet 3000 printers can be found at the ZID Bigshare-server here.

Print Commands


The lpr(1) command uses the cupsd(8) spooling daemon to print files. lpr actually places files in a print queue, which is a list of files waiting to be printed.

The general format of the lpr command is

$ lpr [-P<printer>] <file name>

The <file name> entry can be simply the name of the file, the relative pathname of the file, the full pathname of the file, or a list of file names separated by spaces. The format you use depends on where the file is located in relation to your current directory. You may also use pattern-matching characters to specify files. If you specify a hyphen (-) for a <file name>, the lpr command reads from standard input; this can be used in conjunction with specified file names.

The -P flag indicates that you wish to specify a printer. The <printer> entry is the name of a printer (output device). When you do not specify a particular printer with the -P flag, the default printer or the value of the PRINTER environment variable is used. The default printer at the LinuX cluster is the postscript printer miro. Use the lpstat -s command to learn the names of all printers.

For example to print postscript files at the LinuX cluster just type

$ lpr [-Pbizhub1] <file name>

at the shell prompt.

A complete list of flags supported by the lpr(1) command is given in the man pages.

lprnew, lpr_new

For the choice of paper trays and the duplex mode of the HP LaserJet 2300 tdn printers, the HP Color LaserJet 5550 DN and the HP Color LaserJet 3000 use the command lprnew (or equivalently lpr_new) in the directory /net/appls/bin. Type

$ lprnew -help

at the shell prompt to get further help:

Usage: lprnew [options] <file names>

-help print this message
-h suppresses the printing of the banner page

-P<printer> name of printer to use
goya,ps,raw goya duplex color postscript (level 3) printer (default!)
t,text goya duplex text printer (ascii files)
ts goya duplex text printer (small font)
klee,ps2,raw2 klee duplex postscript (level 3) printer
t2,text2 klee duplex text printer (ascii files)
ts2 klee duplex text printer (small font)
chagall,psc,rawc chagall color duplex postscript printer
-I<tray> name of tray to use
m,manual manual feed (tray 1)
u,upper upper tray (multipurpose tray)
c,center center tray (tray 2: 250 sheet, default!)
l,lower lower tray (tray 3: 500 sheet for miro, goya & klee)
-K<sides> name of duplex mode to use
1,one_sided one_sided
2,two_sided two_sided long edge binding (default for duplex printers!)
tumble,two_sided_tumble two_sided short edge binding
Default options can be omitted!

If you specify a hyphen (-) for <file names>, the lprnew command reads from standard input.


GtkLp is an graphical frontend for CUPS, the Common UNIX Printing System. It is used to have an easy (and graphical) access to all of the many options of cups-managed printers.

You can call GtkLP in three ways:

  • Without any parameters you can select files via integrated file-dialog
  • With some filenames as parameter, file-dialog will also appear
  • Within a pipe, e.g. from netscape, no file-dialog is shown

GtkLP knows many command-line parameters, please look at the manpages gtklp(1) and gtklpq(1) to see them all.


The X Printing Panel (XPP) is a tool for easy choosing of the desired printer out of a list of all available printers and for setting printer options by an easy-to-use graphical user interface. One simply calls the program xpp in the directory /net/appls/bin instead of the usual utilities (lpr or lp) at the command line or out of applications.

To call the program, simply type

$ xpp <file name>

or only

$ xpp

at the command prompt or put xpp into the printing command fields of your applications (Mozilla, gv ...). Mozilla remembers your print command automatically, in "gv" click on State at the top of the window and choose Setup Options in the upcoming menu. In the dialog appearing then adjust the Print command (at the bottom of the window) to "xpp". Then turn off the button Confirm Printing (on the left hand side of the dialog) by clicking on it. Now click the buttons Apply, Save, and Dismiss one after the other. Now the poor printing dialog of "gv" is replaced by a better one.

After giving the command shown above or when printing out of an application, you will get a dialog window where you can choose the printer on which you want to print and the number of copies you want to print from your file. All printers in your network made available for your machine via CUPS will appear in the list. If you have started XPP from the command line without supplying a file name, click on Browse and choose your file comfortably. There is a preview for text files and JPEG/PNG images.

Printer Status and Spool Information

The lpq(1) command examines the spooling area used by lpd for printing files on the line printer and reports the status of the specified requests or all requests associated with a user.

The lpq command invoked without any arguments reports on any requests currently in the queue. The -P flag can be used to specify a particular printer; otherwise, the default line printer is used (or the value of the PRINTER environment variable).

For each request submitted (that is, each request invoked by lpr, lprnew or lpr_new), lpq reports the user's name, current rank in the queue, the names of files comprising the request, the request ID (a number that you can use to identify the request to other commands, such as lprm) and the total size of the job in bytes.

The lpstat(1) command displays information about the current status of the line printer. If no flags are given, then lpstat displays the status of all requests made by the lpr command. To specify the display of a status summary, including the status of the line printer scheduler, the system default destination, and a list of printers and their associated devices use the -s flag, to specify the display of acceptance status (with respect to the lpr command) of destinations for requests use the -a flag:

$ lpstat -a[printer1,printer2, ...]

To get the list of available printers and display the status of them, type

$ lpstat -p

If you decide not to print your request, you can delete it from the print queue by using the lprm(1) or cancel(1) command. The general format of the lprm command is the following:

$ lprm [-P<printer>] [-] [<request-ID> ...]

The lprm command without any arguments deletes the currently active request if it is owned by the user who invoked lprm.

The - flag removes all requests from the user issuing the command.

The -P flag specifies the queue associated with a specific printer; otherwise, the default printer or the value of the PRINTER variable in the environment is used.

Example: To remove a request from the queue bizhub1 with <request-ID> 238, enter:

$ lprm -Pbizhub1 238

Diagnostics: If a user tries to remove files that belong to another user, he'll get the error message: Permission denied

The lpoptions(1) command displays or sets printer options and defaults. lpoptions shows the default printer options when run with no arguments. The -l flag lists the printer specific options and their current settings. The argument -d <dest> sets the default printer to <dest>.

Line Printer Control

The lpc(8) provides limited control over printer and class queues provided by CUPS. It can also be used to query the state of queues. For each line printer configured the lpc command (in the directory /usr/sbin) may be used for finding the status of printers, their associated spooling queues, and the printer daemons.

To displays the status of daemons and queues on the local machine, type

$ lpc status [<printer> ...]

at the shell prompt. When <printer> name parameters are not supplied, information about all printers is provided.

The Printer Refuses to Work

When you've sent files from an Alpha or LinuX site to the printer and they wont't come out, please do the following first:

  • Check, if the printer is "online".
  • Check, if the printer has enough paper, if there is a paper jam or if there is some other error message displayed at control panel of the printer. (Especially, if somebody has sent a file in "letter" format, remove that file from the printer memory by pressing the Cancel Job or Umschalten+Rücksetzen or Umschalten+Weiter buttons at control panel.)
  • Open the print queue of your LinuX site with the lpq command and see, if your job is left in the queue.
  • Open the print queue of the print servers "obiwan" and "yeti" and see, if your job is there.
  • Do not sent the job twice, if it still remains in one of this queues!
  • If your job is left in the queue of your LinuX site, some abnormal condition may have caused the printer daemon to terminate unexpectedly. Check the spooling daemon of your LinuX site with the lpc command in the directory /usr/sbin. If your job is left in the queue of one of the print servers, contact your system administrator.
If the printer still refuses to work, please contact your system administrator.

What you shall never do:

  • Do not sent the same job twice or more before you have done the above check list.
  • Do not turn off the printer.
  • Do not change printer settings at the control panel.
  • Do not change hardware settings at the printer. Especially, do not change the paper format of the lower paper tray or close the multipurpose tray (manual feed, upper tray).
Remenber: there are other people who want to use the printers, too!