Sharing a PostScript printer with CUPS and Samba

Using Samba and CUPS, the Common UNIX Printing System, Ubuntu can easily be configured to provide printing services to a heterogeneous network of Windows, Macintosh and Linux clients.

Printing with CUPS

Get the necessary packages with the following command:

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo apt-get install cupsys foomatic-filters-ppds

Add the user cupsys to the group shadow:

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo adduser cupsys shadow

Get the file cupsd.conf and move it to /etc/cups/:

user@ubuntu:~# sudo wget ""
user@ubuntu:~# sudo mv cupsd.conf /etc/cups/

The downloaded file contains the following changes from the Ubuntu default configuration:

# Default authentication type, when authentication is required...
DefaultEncryption IfRequested
# Restrict access to the admin pages...
<Location /admin>
  Allow @LOCAL

Setting these options enables members of the admin group to modify the configuration of the CUPS server from clients sharing the same local network.
Modify the file /etc/cups/cups.d/ports.conf to read:

Port 631
Listen localhost
Listen /var/run/cups/cups.sock

For, substitute the IP address of your machine on the local network.
Restart cupsd with the following command:

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo /etc/init.d/cupsys restart

Use a web browser to access http://localhost:631/admin (or from another machine on your local network). Go to Administration > Add Printer and begin to set up your printer. When prompted by the system, authenticate yourself as a member of the admin group. If necessary, obtain the correct PostScript Printer Description (PPD) file for your printer model. Print a test page to confirm that your printer is working properly with CUPS.

Making Printers Available over the Network

Install and configure a Samba server and then add the following options to /etc/samba/smb.conf:

  printing = cups
  load printers = Yes
  printcap name = cups
  comment = All Printers
  printable = Yes
  path = /var/spool/samba/print
  browseable = No
  guest ok = Yes
  read only = Yes

Create the directory /var/spool/samba/print and set its permissions with the following two commands:

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo mkdir -p /var/spool/samba/print
user@ubuntu:~$ sudo chmod 1777 /var/spool/samba/print

Restart the Samba server with the following command:

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo /etc/init.d/samba restart

Set your Samba clients to use a printer driver that outputs generic PostScript. Use the the Apple LaserWriter driver on Windows, the Generic PostScript driver on Mac OS X or the Raw Standard driver on Ubuntu.,