Secret drivers for LaserJet 3030 and other HP LJ all-in-ones

Discussion in 'HP' started by Ben, Aug 27, 2006.

  1. Ben

    Ben Guest

    If you have been trying to use the HP LaserJet 3030 -- or one of the
    other HP LJ multifunctions -- with MacOS X like I have and you haven't
    used it as a boat anchor yet, there are secret drivers that enable you
    to use all its features under recent versions of MacOS X. I reviewed
    the LJ3030 in another, but I assume you bought this because you wanted
    a printer, scanner, FAX, and copier (or at least two or three of
    those). I believe HP's decision to use AiO was misguided and Mac users
    have suffered as a result. In any case, I found a workaround to enable
    reliable printing with AiO and new (almost secret) drivers to enable
    scanning from TWAIN applications.

    If you are happy accessing just the printer function from MacOS X, then
    you are probably fine. The printer works fine as a USB-connected
    PostScript printer using the drivers included in the
    HewlettPackardPrinterDrivers.pkg included with MacOS X. It might even
    work fine as a generic PostScript printer even if the
    HewlettePackardPrinterDrivers.pkg wasn't installed (I never tested this
    and I don't know how much AiO support is required for just printing).
    Or you can install the latest HP LaserJet V.5.5.2 [print-only] drivers
    (which includes updated PPDs and PDEs for printer-specific features and
    supports both PPC and Intel).

    However, the scanner component is inaccessible when used this way -- an
    AiO driver must be installed to access the scanner (and the FAX
    capability). Unfortunately, I found that when HP AiO's drivers are
    installed, printing is unreliable. In particular, when a job is queued
    up while a job is printing, the queued job is dropped. For example, if
    you submit jobs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Job #1 will start printing, and jobs 2,
    3, 4, 5 will queue up. After #1 finishes, the Mac will send over #2
    except the printer will ignore it. After #2 is sent over, then #3 will
    start printing. #4 will be lost and then #5 will print out. Note that
    is only happens if the LJ3030 is connected directly to the Mac via USB.
    If the LJ3030 is connected to a JetDirect en3700, then the Mac prints
    via LPD, JetDirect/9100, or IPP and there is no problem.

    Also, the all-in-one software V.5.9.5 (note confusing naming and
    versioning -- these drivers date from 2003/2004) includes a TWAIN
    driver stopped working with 10.2 (it definitely doesn't work with 10.3
    and 10.4).

    First Fix: New drivers
    While HP's drivers page for MacOS X only shows the V.5.5.2 [print-only]
    drivers and the all-in-one V.5.9.5 drivers, the MacOS X drivers page
    for the Color LaserJet 2820/2840 have the new all-in-one V.6.0 drivers.
    This 180MB download from Feb '05 actually includes support for dozens
    of HP multifunction/all-in-ones. Although the icon for the HP Director
    is wrong, this driver otherwise fully supports the HP LaserJet 3030
    under MacOS X 10.3. In particular, it replaces the TWAIN driver with
    one that is compatible with 10.3+ (possible 10.2+ but I didn't test
    this). FAX send support also worked under 10.3 and 10.4 from "admin"
    (from a regular user under 10.4, PrintJobMgr crashed on attempts to

    Second Fix: Delay for CommApp
    Still missing: full Intel-support and reliable printing.
    Unfortunately, full Intel support can only come from HP, but I found a
    workaround for reliable printing when the HP drivers are installed and
    the printer is connected via USB. When the HP drivers are installed
    and the LJ3030 is connected via USB, all communication to the LJ3030 is
    done through "HP". Printing in this situation
    handled by a "CommApp" backend that forwards to HP Communications. The
    fix is to insert a delay after "CommApp" runs so that the printer has
    time to recover before accepting a new job.

    My hack to create the delay requires creating a wrapper script for
    CommApp which adds a "sleep" after calling the real CommApp.
    As root after HP's drivers are installed:
    # cd /usr/libexec/cups/backend
    # mv CommApp CommApp.exe
    # cat <<EOF > CommApp
    /usr/libexec/cups/backend/CommApp.exe "[email protected]" && sleep 8
    # chmod 755 CommApp
    # exit

    Stilling Missing: Manual feed and Watermarks support. See next post.
    Ben, Aug 27, 2006
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  2. Ben

    David Lesher Guest

    Hey; I would like to modify a 4050 PPD so as to force Letterhead to
    be fed from Tray 1 & to be single-sided.

    I had a hack working in OS9 but when I tried the same thing with
    the OSX version, no joy.

    Any comment?
    David Lesher, Aug 28, 2006
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  3. Ben

    Ben Guest

    Hi David,

    We did this kind of thing all the time at a place I used to work.
    Simplified a lot of things as far as printer installations and on-going
    configuration correctness. I had one of my guys do it on a day-to-day
    basis, though.

    Anyway, seems like there would be two ways to do this:
    1. Modify the PPD so that a) selecting Letterhead includes codes to
    pull from Tray 1 and force duplex/tumble off and b) ensure the output
    ordering is such that codes for paper selection comes after codes for
    tray selection and duplex mode.

    2. Modify the PPD with UIConstraints to prohibit the combination of
    Letterhead with either duplex/tumble or a tray other than 1.

    #2 is probably cleaner but I'm not sure if current Mac dialogs would
    handle this in a user-friendly sort of way. I don't have access to a
    LJ 4050 or any HP printer with more than one tray so I wouldn't be able
    to test anything I try.

    If you would like to e-mail me directly, I use Gmail as an ISP and my
    account there is bzgnyc.

    Ben, Aug 29, 2006
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