sharing network printer (or not?)
I want to ask you a suggestion to my problem, so first I have to explain the problem. I apologize for being not very clear, but there are things that I did and I don't exactly remember...
We have in our measuring room (we do nuclear physics experiments) 4 desktop PC's plus some laptops (variable number). One of the desktops is running Fedora 3, the others WinXP. We need a printer on which all of these computers could print. We got a HP Color LaserJet 3600n printer which seems to fulfill our needs.
I try to summarize what I did in the last days, asking you to help me somehow to get things working.
First, my intention was to connect the printer via USB to the Linux box, and to share it with all the other WinXP computers. I connected the printer, I got the driver from the network, I went to the printer configuration utility, I did the installation, test page was OK, I opened some programs we are using, I could print... So I thought is a success.
Next step: share this printer with WinXP computers. Doing some google, I found somewhere a useful (to my opinion) "how-to". Unfortunately I did NOT bookmark this, so now I cannot tell you where is this. It was written there what I have to do. What I remember now is: it was suggested that this is done through samba and cups. I discovered samba was not running, so I started, then I added samba to the list of the servers to be started at startup. Then I was asked to do some modifications in some files, smb.conf, mime.types and maybe some others (sorry for my very short memory) in the sense that I was asked to uncomment some lines.
After doing that, I tried from one of the WinXP computers to define and install the printer, but without any success. I did a certain number of trials, but it did not want to print... It was Friday evening, I had nobody to ask for help, so I gave up.
During the weekend, I thought that asking for an IP number for the printer and putting it into the network of the Laboratory would do my life much easier. So, yesterday I got that IP (assigned via DHCP, but it will remain always the same). Done this, I installed the printer without any problems on ALL WinXP computers... But installing the same printer in the Linux PC was impossible... I found that I have to define it as "Networked Jetdirect", I entered the IP, but... nothing prints. On windows it is defined as "locally connected" but on another port, created at the installation time, named "IP_ipnumber" but on Linux this option apparently does not exist.
Then, my next idea was: I will keep it on ethernet for the WinXP computers, and I will connect it using USB to the Linux box, to print from that one. I did the same, tried again to configure it as local printer, but now... it did NOT want to print anymore... Sending CUPS test page from the printer configuration program results in printing a lot of pagest, first of them containing few rows in Postscript language, the others completely white...
I suspect that the modifications I made in samba and cups configuration files
produced all this behaviour... Unfortunately I was not clever enough to save the original versions of those files, I don't even remember exactly which are these files...
What do you think, there is a solution to this problem? Or I am completely lost?
I have to mention that I cannot reinstall Fedora, the system as it is now contains important programs very difficult to re-configure (and, in any case, not by myself).
Thank you very much in advance, and sorry for being so confused...