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Printing Solutions with the Raspberry Pi

One of my least favorite technologies has been home printing.  For some reason or another, whether hardware, software, or driver issues, I seem to run into problems with printers, eventually getting to the point where a once reliable printer seems to lose a print job in the electronic ether – sometimes with great frequency.

Enter: the Raspberry Pi.

(And: a couple tutorials.)

CUPS Printing

PiminecraftcupsThanks to the MagPi Magazine, I learned how to use CUPS printing (an open source software using standards-based printing protocols, developed by Apple) to set up printing to a USB connected printer.  It works great for me, prints reasonably fast, and I don’t recall losing or re-sending any print jobs.  This is shockingly easy, because no drivers have to be downloaded, it’s easy to set up and it just works.

Link to the MagPi article on setting up CUPS printing  

I have also installed CUPS using the similar guide at Penguin Tutor.

Google Cloud Printing

picloudprintimageMore recently I decided to try Google Cloud Printing, a service that utilizes an internet connection and one’s Google account to turn a wired printer into a wireless printer.  Setting it up on an internet-connected Raspberry Pi means I can print from  a computer (via a free install of Google Cloud Print), as well as an Android device (free Google Cloud Print app) or an iPad (via the paid PrintCentral Pro app) as long as I have an internet connection on both sides and the Pi and printer are both on.  This has worked extremely well for me as well and was also a quick set up.

Here’s a guide at How-To Geek 

Who would have thought that a little $35 computer would make printing easier?  Hopefully, many less hours will be wasted, at least in attempts to print simple documents.

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December 11, 2013 Posted by | Computers, Technology | , | Leave a comment