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Adding a Network Printer in Ubuntu 12.04

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In the old days, printing was really hard in linux. It was one of the things that was a deal breaker when trying to switch from Windows for a lot of people, but when I first tried Ubuntu (probably around 2006-2007) it made all that pain go away! It was easy! A couple of clicks and you could set up a network printer and its been that easy ever since.

Recently Ubuntu have tried to make their settings screen a bit like a Mac, and to simplify everything they seem to be using a simplified user interface for the printer configuration too:

Well this new interface doesn’t work for me, when I try to add a network printer, I get the error message:

FirewallD is not running. Network printer detection needs services mdns, ipp, ipp-client and samba-client enabled on firewall.

Well no matter what I did, I couldn’t add my printer. After some googling around, I found how to get to the old user interface… which actually works! Just type this into a terminal:

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sudo system-config-printer

And you will be given this old familiar screen:

Clicking the big “Add” button in this screen and following the steps worked great for me. Another alternative is to use the CUPS web interface on http://localhost:631 but that can be a little more complicated.

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