If you check your mail as root (run pine) you'll see a mail that describes a few tasks. One of them is setting up your printer. I would however say that you want to look at http://www.cups.org
for a more fully featured printing system than comes with Slack 8.1.
As for the CD-RW, do you have ide-scsi support loading? Typically this is loaded somewhere around line 508 of /etc/rc.d/rc.modules. You can list your loaded modules using lsmod
. If it's there then its a good sign, however you'll need to pass the kernel the parameter metioned in /etc/rc.d/rc.modules above the ide-scsi line (about line 500). For my box I've got
append = "hdc=ide-scsi"
in /etc/lilo.conf but this will depend on which device your CD-RW is.
If you do change anything in /etc/lilo.conf remember to run the lilo
command afterwards. Out of curiousity why did you install 8.1 instead of 9.1?
HTH and welcome to LinuxQuestions