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This set of instructions is geared towards our divisional linux workstation users. Please see the appropriate areas for Windows or Mac OS X.

Which printer should I use and where is it?

You can get a list of all division printers by typing printers at the linux prompt.

All of these printers are fast, and are capable of double-sided printing.

Printers Location Information
pr-d255 D255 (upstairs) Canon imageRUNNER 5065 b&w copier
pr-canon-a224 A224 (upstairs) Canon imageRUNNER 5065 b&w copier
pr-canon-color-a224 A224 (upstairs) Canon imageRUNNER 2880 color copier
pr-canon-color-c139 C139 (downstairs) Canon imageRUNNER 2880 color copier

There are other slower printers spread throughout the division in offices which are also, generally, accessible everyone, but the main printers should be used for the bulk of your printing.

What is my limit for using the printer?

There is no quota, limit, or charge on the amount of paper you can use while you are in the division. Please, however, be considerate of the trees and expense. If you are going to print off a long document, print the document double column and rotated; for example, enscript -2r foobar. To save paper, the print queues for the duplex-capable printers produce double-sided output by default. If you need single-sided, send the document to single-sided queue.

Also, when possible use on-line viewing interfaces, such as ghostview or gv (for postscript files), xdvi (for dvi files), Adobe Reader (for PDFs), or your web browser where appropriate.

If you need to print multiple copies of a document, please use the photocopier instead of tying up the printer.

How do I set the default printer on a linux box?

If you set the environmental printer variable, you will not need to specify which printer you wish your output to go to each time. This can be set (or reset) in a particular shell; in which case the definition lasts the lifetime of the shell (or until you reset it). The printer variable can also be set in your shell's initialization file (for example, the .tcshrc if you use tcsh). In either location, type

         setenv PRINTER printer_name

If you're not sure what your current default printer is, you can check by giving the command:

         printenv PRINTER

How do I print a file from linux?

Plain text files (ones you can read) can be printed using enscript. Enscript converts these files to postscript format and then sends them to the specified printer. For example, where PRINTER is set,

         enscript foobar

will print the file. See man enscript for a complete explanation.

Files already in postscript format (generally end in ".ps" and are "gibberish" if you read them) can be printed using lpr. (A file is determined to be a postscript file if the first two characters are "%!".) For example, to print file on lw3 -- (where PRINTER is not set)

         lpr -Plw3 foobar

or to print the very large file

         lpr -s

This creates a symbolic link from the spool area to the data file rather than trying to copy the data file into the spool. This means the data files should not be modified or removed until they have been printed. See man lpr for a complete explanation of lpr options.

Dvi files (end in ".dvi" and are also "not readable") must be turned into postscript before printing. dvips converts dvi files into postscript. (See man dvips for more information.) Therefore, to print the file "foobar.dvi", do

         dvips foobar.dvi

which will generate a file. (Then see info on printing postscript files.)

I printed my file in linux, but it hasn't come out of the printer yet. What's up?

First, check to see if the file is still in the print queue (hasn't been printed yet because people are ahead of you). For example, to check lw3 to see that Riley's job is still in the queue.
> lpq -Plw3
         lw3_local is ready and printing
         Rank   Owner      Job  Files                          Total Size
         active riley       200  /usr/tmp/ESa21345              1656725 bytes

If the file has been printed, your job may be sitting on the table or the shelves around the printer. Mainly, just look around. If you still can't find it, try again. If you think there are problems with the printer, email

Please recycle any unwanted printouts. The recycling bin is right inside the door to the printer room.

Oops. I sent a file to the printer, from linux, I didn't mean to

Use lprm to remove jobs from the printer queue, using the job id given under an lpq. So, for this job
> lpq -Plw3
         lw3_local is ready and printing
         Rank   Owner      Job  Files                          Total Size
         active riley       200  /usr/tmp/ESa21345              1656725 bytes

you would type, and receive:
> lprm -Plw3 200 dequeued dequeued>