lp:unable to print file:server-error-service-unavailable
I've seen all kinds of posts on the net describing a similar problem to this - but no real solutions or explanations that make sense to me. Here's what's happening:
I have fedora Core 3_64 running on an Athlon 64 3000+ server with a RAID5 arary, 1GB RAM, couple of other EIDE drives I'm using for backups, and several users on the system. I have developed an intense dislike for CUPS (can't get it to work reliably in my environment..) and have installed LPRng on this system - shut off the cupsd daemon. I seem to be able to print fine to all the printers I have connected in various ways whenever I (or any other user) manually ask the system to print something. The lprngtool seems to be able to handle setting up printers and managing them OK (although, It is a bit slow....).
The problem I'm having is when I run a shell script on a crontab that contains an "lp" command: lp -dsystem /absolute/pathname. Whenever the script executes, I get an error emailed to me that states:
lp: unable to print file: server-error-service-unavailable
If I run the very same script from the command line, it seems to be fine. If I enter that same lp command directly at the command line, it works fine.
I -think- this is a CUPS error, but -- in much the same manner as a Microsoft Blue Screen Of Death - there isn't NEARLY enough useful information in this error message to try to debug anything. All it does is tell me there has been a failure - no good indication as to WHY? It doesn't even state for certain that this is a CUPS error, although I -think- it is. The fine folks working on CUPS (and/or FC3) really need to step back a pace here and think about putting some better error messages in place, and leaving the printer-switcher in place until CUPS actually works right FOR EVERYONE. Oops, I'm editorializing.
I -suspect- that perhaps the FC3 kernel and/or the bourne-again shell or cron daemon might have been boogered up to expect that CUPS, and only CUPS, will be providing print services.
Anyway - if anyone out there can help pinpoint EXACTLY what might be causing this error, I'd appreciate the input. Thanks.