Need help using a windows XP printer over Samba

Discussion in 'Apple' started by Geico Caveman, Aug 23, 2010.

  1. Situation:

    Office that has no non-Windows driver printers.

    An unused XP machine.

    What I want to do:

    I want to set up print sharing on the XP machine and use the network to
    send print jobs to that windows XP machine from my Mac.

    NB: No Mac/Linux drivers for the printers in question exist.

    I set up the printer on XP (and I might have made mistakes following
    multiple Google pages - see for instance):

    (Since both Linux and Mac use Samba, the client OS here is immaterial).

    I chose generic postscript printer since nothing else made sense.


    smbclient -L
    timeout connecting to
    timeout connecting to
    Error connecting to (Operation already in progress)
    Connection to failed (Error NT_STATUS_ACCESS_DENIED)

    Can't connect to the darned windows machine.

    Any solutions to this ?

    Caveat: I have very little familiarity with windows XP since I use
    Linux and Mac predominantly.
    Geico Caveman, Aug 23, 2010
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  2. Geico Caveman

    Conor Guest

    Yep. First, disable the firewall. If that works, enable the firewall and
    in Control Panel, Firewall, Exceptions add the ports required.

    If it doesn't work with the firewall disabled, create a user account on
    the XP box with the same login user/pass used on the mac.
    Conor, Aug 23, 2010
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  3. Geico Caveman

    Tim Murray Guest

    Most office printers don't have PostScript, so I'd check that.
    Tim Murray, Aug 26, 2010
  4. And CUPS itself can talk HP PCL...for the rest.
    The Natural Philosopher, Aug 26, 2010
  5. Certainly not all. Probably not most.
    Chris F.A. Johnson, Aug 26, 2010
  6. I don't know exactly* how Windows printing is supposed to work, but I'll
    take a WAG at this. IMO, the OP is going to run into problems printing
    anything beyond simple text using this method. However, I agree that this
    looks like the only possibility if the OP's printer is "windows only." In
    other words, it could be true that only Windows knows how to send the
    magic incantations to the printer to be able to properly format WYSIWYG
    documents. Simple documents may work with the method (using default font
    and margins of printer).

    BTW, as advice to the OP, Windows XP SP3 has more security turned on by
    default. These were changes for the better, IMO. For any printer that you
    want to use, you need to share the printer _and_ enable the exception on
    the firewall.

    *AIUI, Windows idea of printer sharing is a bit weak. Instead of exposing
    a "neutral" device which expects postscript**, pcl, or some other
    arbitrary printer esperanto, the print share expects input in the
    printers native tongue. That is why the Samba book you referenced
    explains installing the native windows drivers for other /* Windows */
    computers to download. Once the printer is installed on a /* Windows */
    computer, it gains the ability to speak the native printer language. GNU/
    Linux can also use the printer share, subject to the same restriction.
    That is, if an appropriate print filter exists for the device, then it
    will work fine. If not, then I think you're SOL. That is how I think it
    works, but I could be wrong.

    **If you want to print to postscript on the Windows only printer, you can
    probably do it- albeit in a two step process. The first step is to setup
    pdfcreator on the Windows computer where the _Windows only_ hardware
    printer exists.
    You can get PDFCreator here:

    Setup PDFCreator as a shared printer. This "printer" accepts postscript
    and collects them into jobs for conversion to pdf files. The resulting
    pdf files can be printed on any printer, including the Windows only
    printer. Setup your linux box to send jobs to pdfcreator using a generic
    postscript driver. For example, CUPS has a printer manufacturer "generic"
    which has several drivers, including "generic postscript printer." This
    is a kludge and a multistep process, but I think it does work- either for
    Linux or Mac clients and from any desktop linux app.

    One more thing, and going slightly off-topic, the latest Windows printer
    bug to bite me was using remote desktop. I learned (after a few hours
    trying to fix this) that any "local" printer which you want to use in
    your "remote" session, must be installed at the remote location first.
    This is for the exact same reason as above- the printer communications
    will take place in the native printer language. If this the remote
    computer does not know how to communicate with the printer, then it won't
    be listed among the available printers.
    Douglas Mayne, Aug 26, 2010
  7. Geico Caveman

    Tim Murray Guest

    I don't know where you work, but my customers are all large corporate
    clients like Home Depot, UPS, Coke, Cingular, Verizon, etc., and among many
    hundreds of printers throughout the buildings, the ones with PostScript are
    few and far between. A very common price to add PostScript to the big
    Ricohs and such is $600.
    Tim Murray, Aug 27, 2010
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