Network printing

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014

It’s nearly two years since I wrote about session printing, in which the user doesn’t need to modify a locally running CUPS instance in order to print to a network printer. The main advantage of having printing running entirely in the user session is that no special privileges are needed. After all, all you need to do is send the document over the network.

So what’s the current state of play?

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Typing breaks in GNOME

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

input-keyboard-100For quite a while now I’ve used the drwright application to configure typing breaks. Once every so often, the desktop would refuse keyboard input and tell me to go and walk around for a few minutes instead. This helps to prevent RSI and other problems.

Since Fedora 19, though, drwright is no longer usable. No matter, I switched to Workrave as that is a similar application although with more tweakable options than I needed.

But now in Fedora 20 (currently in Beta) the problem of not being able to adjust configuration settings has affected Workrave as well! This time it’s a different bug, but not being able to right-click and get a context menu on the icon makes it pretty hard to use.

Doesn’t anyone else set typing breaks?

Session printing

Thursday, March 8th, 2012

There has been a discussion on the Fedora devel mailing list recently about user session printing: why that might be useful, and in what circumstances it makes sense.

Where I can see it can make some sense to have printing entirely in the user session is for PDF printing to smart services hosted elsewhere: e.g. the office CUPS server, or Google Cloud Print.  Applications produce PDF, so for printing to these types of service there is nothing to do but send the PDF (along with any print options).

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Adding a printer to CUPS

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

The GNOME 3 printer settings module looks like it will be great. The plan for adding a new printer is deceptively ambitious: the user interface design is that you click “+”, choose a printer device, and then click “Add” and the job is done.

For those unfamiliar with printing, this sounds easy enough. To make the user interface as easy to use as that takes more work than you would think at first glance. It’s the direction I’ve been moving towards in system-config-printer.

Here is a description of the issues involved.

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