Subject: Re: lpd and filter programs
To: John Nemeth <email@example.com>
From: Parag Patel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 07/29/1998 11:33:14
>} Lp is a bit more difficult to configure because information is more
> This is a gross understatement. I've configured both lp and lpr
>for both local and remote printers. lpr is simple to setup and
>maintain. lp is a royal pain in the butt.
It sure is. When I was still at HP, I worked with some friends on a
little shell-script sysadmin tool called "lpconfig".
It would take a single simple config file, then destroy and rebuild the
entire "lp" system to match its contents. The config file could handle
both local and remote printers, arbitrary filters, and every possible
lp option/configuration. It was designed so a single config file could
be used safely on all hosts (50+ at our site). Made sysadmin *way*
It kinda spread throughout HP. For all I know they're still using it.
Whenever there was a printer problem, people got in the habit of
running "lpconfig" instead of figuring out what was really wrong just
'cause it was so much easier and quicker.
Anyway, my point is that we'd turned "lp" into a single-config-file
setup much like "lpr". A single config file is much easier to deal
with from a sysadmin config point-of-view - especially when you have
50+ machines to support - even when it's cryptic and hard to understand.
Simply changing lpr's config file from termcap-like to complete words
would help a lot in readability, but it's really not quite as flexible
as "lp". I can't say I really like either very much, but they both
work well enough so it probably isn't worth the effort to design a
whole new lp system.
-- Parag Patel