[plug] finding a midland person who can advise me re printers compatible with Linux and Ubuntu 7.4

Bret Busby bret at busby.net
Thu Oct 18 12:19:47 WST 2007

On Wed, 17 Oct 2007, Peter F Bradshaw wrote:

> Hi Diana;
> On Thu, 11 Oct 2007, Diana Rose Yoka wrote:
>> Dear anyone, hope this email finds you well and happy.
>> I'm in the process of writing my family history and
>> will eventually need a printer and scanner. I have a
>> USB (thumb) drive but it deleted my files, so
>> fortunately I put a basic draft on a floppy which has
>> been put into the desktop..hope this makes sense to
>> you, I'm in my 60's and an older girl is capable of
>> learning new tricks. warm wishes diana carew-reid
> I can recomend the Canon "Canoscan LiDE 25" as a scanner. It is
> avaliable for about $100 and is compatible with "Sane" - which is the
> Linux subsystem for scanners.
> WRT printers my recomendation is not to buy one at all. Unless you are
> in a situation where you need to use a printer every day they are more
> trouble than they are worth. When you are ready to print to paper it is
> easier to format the output (possibly in the form of PDF files) and take
> that down to a secretarial service.

Since this thread has been revived...

I have an HP PSC 1410 (I don't know whether they are still available - 
printer/mutipurpose things seem to be brought out one month, and gone 
the next month), and, using it with Debian 4.0, it works well, so it 
should work okay with Ubuntu 7.4.

It is more or less "Plug-n-Play", and scans well with xsane, as well as 

That would probably do the job for you, if you can find one to buy. I 
think this one cost about $60, at a Tandy shop, or at Big W or K-mart. I 
have two of them - one was bought at a Tandy shop, and, the other was 
bought at Big W or K-mart.

In looking at the MCG web site (www.mcgtech.com.au), a similar-looking 
unit is the HP DJF2180 for $61. I do not know whether that would work 
with Linux. I have also seen advertisements for the Deskjet F380, which 
looks similar.

I do not know whether your Ubuntu is installed on a desktop computer or 
a laptop computer, but, if it is installed on a laptop computer, the 
easy thing would be to take the computer (with the Ubuntu disks, if you 
have them, for printer drivers), to a shop that sells one (or both) of 
these printers, and tell the shop assistant that you want to find 
whether the printer will work, both as a printer, and, as a scanner, 
with your computer. As Ubuntu 7.4 should be very much plugnplay for such 
things, if the printer/scanner will work with it, that should be able to 
be found,by plugging it into the computer, which should automatically 
detect the device.

I also have a cheap laser printer - a Samsung ML2010 that I bought from 
PLE (www.ple.com.au) in Bentley, for around $120. That also works 
without any significant problems (although I had a slight problem 
initially, with its driver installation - the problem and solution 
should be in the list archive). On the printer box, and in the 
brochures, Samsung makes a point of advising that it is compatible with 
various Linux districubtions, which to me means that Samsung is saying 
"Hey, our printer works with Linux, and we support Linux".

One thing that occurred to me, as a fellow genealogist - are you looking 
for an A4 printer, or an A3 printer?

I know that an A3 printer is quite a useful thing to have, in genealogy, 
and, I had one at one stage - a cheap Canon bubblejet printer 
(unfortunately, it was a GDI printer, and, at that time, GDI printers 
did not work with Linux), that Canon discontinued, as it was about as 
expensive as an A4 inkjet printer - about $300 at the time.

I think that HP has an A3 printer, for around $300, now, but I do not 
know much about its compatibility with Linux.

One place that I suggest that you look, is the web site at 
http://openprinting.org/printer_list.cgi . You would need to find a 
printer that sounds good to you (for price, functionality, etc), get the 
brand and model number, and have a look on that web site, for what it 
says about the printer model.

My Samsung laser printer is rated as Perfect, from memory, and, the HP 
PSC1410 is rated as Mostly (as in most of the functionality works), from 
memory, so you should be able to easily find a desirable printer with 
one of those ratings.

I hope that this is helpful.

Bret Busby
West Australia

"So once you do know what the question actually is,
  you'll know what the answer means."
- Deep Thought,
   Chapter 28 of Book 1 of
   "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:
   A Trilogy In Four Parts",
   written by Douglas Adams,
   published by Pan Books, 1992


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