Add a network printer in GNU / Linux

Network printer (icon)

In this little tutorial, we are going to explain step by step to add a new network printer to our GNU / Linux distribution. The configuration of these types of printers may seem somewhat complicated for some, but as you will see, it is not that complicated in most cases, especially if they are printers of popular brands and models, with official drivers for Linux, etc.

Well, if you are thinking of adding a new printer that you have in your home or in your office and that it is shared as one more network resource, you will only have to follow the following steps to leave it fully functional and configured to start using it. For the description, we are going to use two different methods based on an Ubuntu distribution, although in others it may be a similar procedure ...

Method 1 (Ubuntu Configuration Tool):

If you use your own configuration tool of printers from the Ubuntu control panel, you just have to follow the steps:

  1. Launch the printer tool from the Ubuntu configuration panel.
  2. Click the "Add" button.
  3. Click on "Network printers" or network printers in the device panel.
  4. Then "Find Network Printer" or search for network printer.
  5. If the printer is already connected and connected to your network, type the URL of your network printer in the "Host" text box and click next. Usually the URL is the IP of your printer on your network. For example, if the printer's IP is 192.168.1.11, then the URL will be http://192.168.1.11
  6. Then select the manufacturer of your printer from those that you have available and click next.
  7. Next step of the wizard will be to add the model of your printer and we continue ...
  8. Now we are going to introduce the name that we want to give to the network printer, location and description when asked.
  9. We continue and when applying the data, everything should be OK. You can print a test page as instructed in the wizard by clicking the button for it. If the process went well, the test page should be printing ...

But this procedure will not be the same in all distros ...

Method 2 (CUPS):

If you are looking for something more generic for other distros, we are going to give you the steps of the configuration procedure using CUPS:

  1. First of all, make sure your printer is connected and properly configured on the network where you will use it. You may be interested in installing packages like Samba to share resources on heterogeneous networks if you have Windows computers as well. If not, go to the next step ...
  2. Now open the browser you use frequently, it doesn't matter which one.
  3. In the address bar, type: "localhost: 631" without quotes and press ENTER to go to that address, which will be your own IP through port 631.
  4. Now you will see a CUPS configuration web interface and click on the Administration tab.
  5. Then go to Add Printer to add the new printer.
  6. Now you must enter your administrator username and password and press ENTER.
  7. Select if you want the printer in the Discovered Network Printers section or select Internet Printing Protocol and click to continue.
  8. Now it will be time to enter the address of the network printer in the text box that is shown for it. The URL as I explained before will be the IP of the printer type "http://192.168.1.11" and press Connection and Continue.
  9. Now put the proper printer name, description and location in the appropriate boxes. Finally «Add Printer» and «Continue».
  10. It is time to choose the manufacturer of the printer in Makes and Continue.
  11. Then the model of our printer to select the drivers from the list and «Add Printer».

After that, you are done ... Try printing a test page.


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  1.   Claudia said

    I tried about 100 times to install a network printer and there is no way ...
    1) Search the web ... never find it. I have shared files without problems, the group runs without problems, I have the ip set ... I don't know what to do anymore.
    2) CUPS cannot find the printer. Same problem.
    3) I installed graphical samba and for me it is impossible to understand it ...

    Any ideas? I'm on the verge of fainting ... no one can tell me how to solve the issue.

    1.    Diego German Gonzalez said

      What printer and what distribution?

      1.    Claudia said

        I have the same problem with two different LANs. Both printers are HP and are connected to PC with W10.

        I already tried putting ip address with http, smb, ipp, etc ... etc. I don't know what address to put because it never finds it.

        The drivers are found for both printers, the problem is that the printers are not detected on the network ... despite being correctly shared.

        I still have to try to put them local in ubuntu, but I have the blessed problem of filter failed. Greetings.

  2.   Claudia said

    I have the same problem with two different LANs. Both printers are HP and are connected to PC with W10.

    I already tried putting ip address with http, smb, ipp, etc ... etc. I don't know what address to put because it never finds it.

    The drivers are found for both printers, the problem is that the printers are not detected on the network ... despite being correctly shared.

    I still have to try to put them local in ubuntu, but I have the blessed problem of filter failed. Greetings.