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From jzaragoza alberich
Answered By Mike Orr, Heather Stern
I know what a winmodem is. I know too that they must be thrown off. All of them. But what is a winprinter? How can they be recognized? Must they be thrown off too? Or do they work under Linux?
[Mike] Beware of any hardware that lists only Windows operating systems on the box. If it says "Windows and Macintosh", there's a good chance it will work with Linux too. But if it lists only Windows 95/98/2000, NT and Me, be suspicious. It could be like a Winmodem, where vital parts of the modem functionality are missing in the modem and must be emulated by the driver. or it could mean there's Windows-specific code in the printer. For instance, instead of using a standard page-description language like PCL or Postscript, the printer may be tied to the Windows printing system directly (e.g., it may communicate with the computer via Windows API calls).
[Heather] A winprinter (like a winmodem) does not have complete printer brains. It uses WIndows GDI calls to preprocess a buffer with the printable image and then just accepts it straight. If I read the original description right. Anyways like a winmodem it rally hits CPU when trying to get work done.
Under Windows that means the driver is really tiny, since GDI is part of the default DLLs that make the rest of the GUI work.
Under Linux that means if it's a Lexmark you can convince it to work, and if it's something else, you could try the Lexmark winprinter drivers ... and if they don't work, oh well, give that to someone who only uses windows and needs a cheap printer.
Under a debian system you can use the package lexmark7000linux. For others you should try Henryk Paluch's website: http://bimbo.fjfi.cvut.cz/~paluch/l7kdriver
[Mike] Combined printer/fax/copier/scanners should especially be avoided unless you know that model works with Linux.
[Heather] It turns out there's a really great site that keeps track of all sorts of things about printing under linux. Wouldn't you guess, it's: http://www.linuxprinting.org
Thank you very much. You are very kind. Of course it will be an honor to get into your magazine. Perhaps would you find it interesting to talk about other "winsoftware": scanners, digital photography devices, joysticks, etc.
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