When I upgraded to Leopard, I noticed a few changes in the printing
system in Leopard. First, CUPS is no longer configured to allowing
browsing. With my Tiger iMac advertising a printer, my Tiger iBook
would automatically find it, and add it to my list of available
printers when I opened a print dialog. This was convenient, because
the printer would appear when available, and disappear elsewhere.
In Leopard, it seems that the default is to advertise printers using
only Bonjour. If my iBook has no printers configured, it will
automatically connect to the Bonjour-advertised printer, if it is the
only one available. However, if there are multiple available printers,
or I already have a printer configured (even a network printer that is
unavailable on the current network), Leopard does not by default add
printers to the available list. I must manually select "Add
Printer..." before being presented with a list of Bonjour printers.
Plus, these printers seem to hang around sometimes even when I'm off
I enabled CUPS browsing on the Leopard machine (the iMac) sharing the
printer, and indeed, if I enable CUPS browsing on the iBook, CUPS on
the iBook will find the iMac printer and add its queue to the pool.
However, neither the GUI printing dialogs nor the Printer Setup
Utility show these CUPS queues. The Add Printer dialog does show the
shared printer, however.
Given this, I'm asking about the reasoning behind these changes. CUPS
browsing and sharing worked well. While it's nice to also advertise
with Bonjour, the specific questions are:
1. Why doesn't the GUI level reflect the addition of CUPS queues
through CUPS browsing?
2. Why was it decided to disable CUPS browsing by default?
3. Why doesn't the printing system automatically add printers when I
have an existing printer in the queue?
I'm guessing the generic answer to these questions is probably along
the lines of, "To avoid confusing Grandma with a bunch of printer
changes when she opens her MacBook in a foreign network." Are there
deeper reasons than that?
Andrew J. Hesford <email@hidden>
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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