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tronayne 12-27-2012 06:30 AM

Yet Another Reason I'll Always Buy H-P Printers
Two hundred miles from home visiting daughter at Christmas. Need to return an item to Amazon, gotta print the shipping label. Oops, laptop, Slackware 14, T-Mobil Hotspot gadget (works good, too), no printer. Arrgghh!

Daughter: "I've got a H-P portable, you want to try it?"

Me: "Uh, sure, thanks."

Put it on the desk, plug in the USB, plug in the power, turn it on, the darned thing self-configured (well, HPLIP had a lot to do with that, methinks). Hello, world! Officejet H470, 13.4 x 6.45 x 3.25 in, 4.5 lbs, even has a battery for field printing. Who knew?

H-P has -- and continues -- to provide HPLIP (fer nothin') and it supports pretty much everything they've ever made in Linux. Good marketing, sure, but, dang, it makes life a whole lot easier for us folk that need to put squiggles on paper now and again; I have a Canon (nice one) that's a boat anchor -- free to a good home if you wanna pay the shipping, lemme know.

Can't pile enough praise on H-P for caring about "the rest of us."

onebuck 12-27-2012 07:17 AM

Member Response

I agree that HP has always had the end user in mind. Great company, still have several. HP/Compaq Laptop(s), HP Plotter, HP-dot matrix and a old Laser. Yet, my pocket book drives to a Brother for Laser usage. I've got clients who have invested in Monster HP Multifunction inkjet printers for SOHO and wonder why the printer has to be purged. SOHO usage just doesn't provide enough activity, unless the printer is used daily then HP purchase is a waste because the investment in ink. Some users just remove power and wonder why the HP printer doesn't print when they apply power. Tell them to leave the printer powered and their response is 'Why waste the power?'. Same answer as they give payment for the service call: Leave it ON! :)

Really no need for plotters, just keep it so when someone asks then I have a open to answer with a simple definition. Some just cannot conceive the use and why. I can now print my board transfers on a Laser to make the prototypes. Brother toner seems to transfer better to copper.

H_TeXMeX_H 12-27-2012 08:03 AM

I also recommend HP printers, most will work just fine. They have some of the best support for Linux and the printers are good quality, no gobbling and ripping pages like Lexmark printers do, and no disposable manufacturing like Epson printers (even tho the drivers are often good for these too).

tronayne 12-27-2012 08:03 AM

I do hate the price of ink cartridges (they more or less give you the printer and make it up on those blasted cartridges, eh?). Actually, I have an H-P Business Inkjet 2280tn (Ethernet, PostScript, two trays) that is cheaper to operate than the Photosmart C-4680; the Inkjet has four cartridges (black, cyan, magenta, yellow) and they wind up costing less to actually use than the Photosmart (black, multicolor). Yeah, they're expensive each ($30 - $40) but the things last for like six months to a year (and the Photosmart ones definitely do not). Well, the black (large capacity) goes about six months and the color ones go a year or more, truth be known.

But, as much as I hate the price, I refuse to refill the things myself (been there, tried that, pain in the butt, gave it up as a waste of too much time and gave away the kit).

Same thing with the plotter -- E-size paper (now that stuff costs an arm and leg) -- full color (the same four cartridges the Inkjet uses). Really can go through ink when I print a map with color contours and details, but, boy or boy, are they pretty.

So, do Brother printers fully support Linux? Might get to trying one sometime if that's the case (seems like a lot of folks like those).

H_TeXMeX_H 12-27-2012 08:11 AM

Unfortunately, it seems that all printer companies have agreed to make the printers cheap and the ink super expensive and hard to refill. If I knew a company that did not do this and did support Linux to a reasonable extent, I would use it.

hitest 12-27-2012 08:17 AM

I also love HP printers. I have an HP P2015 laserjet, I've had the unit for many years and I've only changed the toner cartridge once.

cwizardone 12-27-2012 09:13 AM

I've always been a big fan of Hewlett-Packard's printers and have own
a few over the years, along with some of their other products. Looking
across the desk I see a HP inkjet printer, a scanner and one of their
LCD monitors. All are excellent products. While HP does supply
drivers for their all-in-one office products they do not provide drivers
for their *standalone* scanners. The results in Xsane/sane are
so poor that I keep Xp running in VB just to use the scanner. Given
the age of the scanner, at this point, if sane isn't going to provide
better support, it never will.

onebuck 12-27-2012 09:43 AM

Member Response

Originally Posted by tronayne (Post 4857708)

So, do Brother printers fully support Linux? Might get to trying one sometime if that's the case (seems like a lot of folks like those).

No issue(s) so far getting drivers for a Brother Laser. You can purchase a new Brother on sale at times cheaper than to get a new toner cartridge. Usually when Brother is regen for New series you can get a good fair priced Laser. I consider Brother to be consumer grade product that a well versed user can extend the use for the price paid. One reason to move away from HP was the toner cost and depending on if drum needed replacement too.

Martinus2u 12-27-2012 11:43 AM

last time (only time) i tried to connect an HP printer at my parents, the hplip software segfaulted on me. got it working in the end with some PPD file i downloaded from god knows where.

H_TeXMeX_H 12-27-2012 12:47 PM

I don't use hplip software, I just configure it using CUPS. In fact on slackware 13.37 and up you don't even need to configure it, CUPS auto-configures it, you just need to set it as default.

tronayne 12-27-2012 12:53 PM


Originally Posted by Martinus2u (Post 4857814)
last time (only time) i tried to connect an HP printer at my parents, the hplip software segfaulted on me. got it working in the end with some PPD file i downloaded from god knows where.

Slackware stable doesn't always update HPLIP to current versions; e.g., the Slackware 14.0 version of HPLIP has problems (known).

Best bet, I've found, is to periodically check at and, if the version is newer than whatever you have installed, go to to get the source then copy the hplip directory from the source directory on your Slackware disk. Be sure to change the version number in the source download (or select the link where it says "Advanced users may wish to download the HPLIP tar package" toward the bottom of the first link above).

su -
cd <path-to>/hplip    (that you copied from the Slackware disk)
rm hplip*.gz hplip*.t?z
mv <path-to-download-directory>/hplip-3.12.11.tar.gz .
<wait a while>
upgradepkg --install-new /tmp/hplip*.t?z
mv /tmp/hplip*.t?z .
exit        (from su -)
hp-setup    (to set up your printer(s))

The SlackBuild will automatically compile for 32- or 64-bit depending on your system.

That's what I do and it works just fine.

Hope this helps some.

guanx 12-27-2012 05:01 PM

Upgrading HPLIP is relatively easy because you have already the slackbuild script.

Another problem is that slackware disables some of the drivers.

jefro 12-27-2012 05:01 PM

We buy a lot of stuff from HP. Many of the servers have Suse on them so they have corporate support for linux. Not sure any single company has more linux support. Sure IBM has a lot of Unix type support and maybe Dell might have a claim on RH. Not sure Oracle got what they wanted from Solaris.

Pixxt 12-27-2012 08:55 PM

Too bad they make the worst laptops

TroN-0074 12-27-2012 09:27 PM

Arent they like GOLD members at the committee in the Linux foundation.

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