If you are coming from Ubuntu or Linux Mint you might find it hard to install a printer in OpenSUSE. All one need to do in Ubuntu and its derivatives to install a printer is hit the “add printer” button and follow the easy-to-follow on screen instructions. However, in SUSE which is more of an enterprise operating system like RedHat, installing a printer might not be as straight forward as it is in an Ubuntu derivative. The following tutorial will show one how to install and configure an printer in OpenSUSE.
If you are planning to buy a new printer, you should first check if that printer is compatible with OpenSUSE. Even if the manufacturer of the printer provide drivers for Linux operating systems, it might not sometimes work with OpenSUSE. Unfortunately, SUSE is not that much of a good desktop operating system as Ubuntu or Linux Mint. If you already own a printer that you want to work with your OpenSUSE box, keep your fingers crossed do the following steps.
If you find your printer name in this list, your printer will probably be detected automatically and could work out of the box and could be configured without any trouble. This doesn’t mean you will be able to add the drivers easily and you will not be able to check link levels in the printer cartridges like in Windows, since the printer manufacturers do not provide the necessary software for Linux OSs.
YaST Printer Module
The operating system comes with YaST printer module, which can be used to check the list of models that are supported. You don’t necessarily have to connect your printer to the computer to use this program. In YaST, use the search feature to check if there are drivers for the printer you own or the one you are planning to buy. You can now add the printer and follow the onscreen instructions to choose the right drivers to install the printer.
You should also want the user to be added to multiple groups. This is quite an important step and we highly recommend you to do this, even if the official site doesn’t recommend it. Click on “User and Group Management Accounts” in YaST and then choose the right user name and then click on ‘Edit.’ Now click the details tab and you need to select lp, users and sys and hit “OK.”
Once the printer is added to your computer, you can check the information about the drivers that are currently used by running the following command as root from the terminal.
“lpinfo -l -m | less”
Once you have checked the driver information try printing a test page.
If you want to configure a network printer, you will first need to specify the type of connection in YaST. Choose “Print via Network” from the menu option on the left. Now click on the Connection Wizard on the bottom. Click on “Printer Configuration” and then add the printer. Now you can add the printer the normal way.
Installing using HPLIP
It is indeed the case that HP printers have better hardware support for OpenSUSE compared to many other top printer manufacturers especially because there is a proprietary software tool available to install HP drivers and configure the printers easily – HP Linux Imaging and Printing tool (HPLIP.) Make sure that you HP printer is connected to the computer using the USB connectivity option. The OpenSUSE HP tool makes it easy for HP printer users to install the necessary drivers without any issues. You need to know the IP of your HP printer before you fire up the HP tool to install the printer.
Open the HP Tool and choose the manual option. You will now be able to enter the IP of you printer. The tool will try to find out the printer connected to the computer. Once the printer has been detected it will be automatically configured and will be ready to print. Even if HP is generous enough to the open source community with the HPLIP tool, but they don’t provide any proprietary printing software to fix printer issues or to check ink level in printer cartridges and one needs to check the ink level using another Windows machine or check the ink level manually.
Adding a scanner
If you printer or scanner is listed in the link we have mentioned above, you can use the “Scanner Config Tool.” Once you open the tool, your printer/scanner will be detected if it is connected to the computer. Choose your desired device and then search for the model of the scanner/printer from the long list of devices. Now you will just have to hit next to successfully configure your scanner to work with your OpenSUSE box.