Latest LQ Deal: Latest LQ Deals
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Ubuntu
User Name
Ubuntu This forum is for the discussion of Ubuntu Linux.


  Search this Thread
Old 10-21-2006, 02:45 PM   #1
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: GMT +1(+2 summer)
Distribution: Xubuntu 7.10
Posts: 60

Rep: Reputation: 15
parallel port ISA card issue?

Dear fellows:
I'm experiencing more than little problems installing a Epson Stylus Photo printer in an old recycled PC Pentium 200 MMX with a Xubuntu desktop running smoothly.

This PC runned formerly a Debian Sarge with a 2.4 kernel and this printer got installed and configured to work easily with the CUPS web interface. But I felt in love with Xubuntu forever so I switched...

OK... I had some work to do with the "alternate" text installer in advanced mode but I coped to get everything working well but the printer. The CUPS web interface describes this printer as follows:

Make and Model: EPSON Stylus Photo - CUPS+Gutenprint v5.0.0-rc2
Printer State: idle, accepting jobs, published.
Device URI: parallel:/dev/lp0

It seems apparently well installed, being both port and driver correct. Yes, actually it prints but at a rate of 10 (yes ten!) minutes per page it does no matter if only text or text+graphics. I guess it an issue with the parallel port on an old ISA pnp card. The onboard parallel por no longer exists and is almost impossible to get it, so I unabled it in the BIOS settings to elliminate undesirable interferences. The dmesg output estates:

parport0: PC-style at 0x278 [PCSPP,TRISTATE,EPP]
parport0: Printer, EPSON Stylus Photo
lp0: using parport0 (polling).

Thanks a lot for reading my post. I'll apreciate all advice. If you need more information just let me know!
Old 10-26-2006, 02:45 PM   #2
LQ 5k Club
Registered: Aug 2005
Distribution: OpenSuse, Fedora, Redhat, Debian
Posts: 5,398
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908Reputation: 908
Some older ISA-bus parallel ports had a jumper to enable the card to generate interrupts. Perhaps this is missing/misconfigured. The dmesg output would suggest that the kernel driver was unable to get the device running with interrupts, and is using a polled mode. That would probably account for the slow speed, especially on a slower machine like that.

--- rod.
Old 10-28-2006, 02:21 PM   #3
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: GMT +1(+2 summer)
Distribution: Xubuntu 7.10
Posts: 60

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Thanks for your answer theNbomr!

I did more investigating and I got some answers. I guess the guilt of this bad performance is actually the old processor. Indeed with the former driver gimp-print (debian sarge) everything went ok, but these problems started with the new one included in both xubuntu and debian testing (yes, also tried it!). This old processor doesn't works well with the new driver gutenprint (xubuntu and debian etch) because it demands more recurses. Looking the top output when trying to print I can see that three processes started by lp: gs-esp, rastertoguntenpr and parallel consuming almost 100% cpu. So I switched to a less sophisticated driver, the one included with the cups system. Although I get far less quality in printing it seems to work and the use of cpu is better.

Please, can you add more about interrupts versus polled mode? Are you suggesting to change settings in the BIOS is a way to workaround these annoyances? I thing I always saw the (polling) mode in all of my former dmesg's.

If more information is needed to make a more accurate diagnostic just let me know!


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Parallel port CF Card Reader theonhighgod Linux - Hardware 2 03-17-2006 08:34 AM
Adding Parallel Port Controller Card KenGr Linux - Hardware 0 05-23-2005 11:18 AM
PCI Parallel Port Card Nerox Linux - Hardware 1 08-25-2004 08:48 AM
port address for isa card emetib Linux - Networking 2 07-12-2003 11:12 PM
parallel port multimedia card reader lepres Linux - Hardware 0 04-10-2003 12:54 AM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Distributions > Ubuntu

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:28 PM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration