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While working with Linux clients to Windows SMB/CIFS filesharing servers, from time to time I find myself having to print to a printer with no drivers available under Linux.

For some reason, the Windows computer expects the job to be sent in an already processed format, so it can be fed directly to the printer in its own, weird language.

It would be great if I could send the print job in Postscript or other standard format to the Windows computer sharing this printer, and then this PS could be processed under Windows.

Is there a way to accomplish this? Because I don't seem to find the option.

Thanks a lot.

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2 Answers 2

You can setup your Windows file/print server to accept PostScript (or PDF) from non-Windows (or even Windows) clients and convert incoming files to the native printer format before passing it along.

You need to do 3 things:

  • install Ghostscript (1) on the Windows system;
  • setup a print queue that uses Ghostscripts mswinpr2 (2) device;
  • use the RedMon software (3) as a port monitor (4) for that queue (HOWTO (5)).

    [1]: http://ghostscript.com/releases/
    [2]: http://svn.ghostscript.com/ghostscript/trunk/gs/doc/Devices.htm#Win
    [3]: ftp://mirror.cs.wisc.edu/pub/mirrors/ghost/ghostgum/redmon17.zip
    [4]: http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~ghost/redmon/
    [5]: http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~ghost/redmon/en/redmon.htm


Update:
Just discovered this howto here which includes a lot of screenshots:

Though this covers Mac clients using a Windows print server emulating a PostScript device, most of its instructions apply 1:1 for your use case (Linux clients).

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If the printer attached to the print-server can handle postscript files, it is possible for the Windows Server to set up an LPR gateway. If this is allowed on the Windows servers, then your native Linux printing should be able to work with it. Unfortunately, if the printer itself can't speak postscript you'll still need a Linux-local driver.

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