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I tried to tap into Belkin Home Base (model #F5L049au) print server. I want to access a printer hosted by it. I set it up as a CUPs printer with the below specifications:

Description:    Via Belkin @ 192.168.1.10
Location:   Peter's Bedroom
Driver: Brother HL-4050CDN BR-Script3 (color, 2-sided printing)
Connection: socket://192.168.1.10
Defaults:   job-sheets=none, none media=iso_a4_210x297mm sides=one-sided

I attempt to print and get an error:

'Printer may not be connected'

But it definitely is connected and I just printed from a Windows machine elsewhere on the network.

(Aside: On Windows, the Belkin print server-hosted resources are managed in a dedicated control panel, which obviously is not made to work with Linux.)

If you require other information, tell me what and how to retrieve it and it shall be posted in this space also.

Please help me to access the printer Brother HL-4050CDN via the Belkin print server.

192.168.1.10 appears to be the print server's address, so in my failed attempt to set up the printer above I use IPP protocol.

enter image description here

The print server has 4 ports, so the 4 variations below are an attempt to contact the printer on all 4 ports. I'm not even sure which port the printer is occupying in terms of 9100, 9101, 9102 or 9103. The print server itself responds to pings:

peter@Peter-OldPC:~$ ping 192.168.1.10:9100
ping: unknown host 192.168.1.10:9100
peter@Peter-OldPC:~$ ping 192.168.1.10:9101
ping: unknown host 192.168.1.10:9101
peter@Peter-OldPC:~$ ping 192.168.1.10:9102
ping: unknown host 192.168.1.10:9102
peter@Peter-OldPC:~$ ping 192.168.1.10:9103
ping: unknown host 192.168.1.10:9103
peter@Peter-OldPC:~$ ping 192.168.1.10
PING 192.168.1.10 (192.168.1.10) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=1 ttl=64 time=7.73 ms
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=2 ttl=64 time=1.37 ms
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=3 ttl=64 time=1.32 ms
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=4 ttl=64 time=1.29 ms
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=5 ttl=64 time=1.32 ms
64 bytes from 192.168.1.10: icmp_seq=6 ttl=64 time=1.51 ms
...

@Caleb

enter image description here

enter image description here

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What does the CUPS web admin panel say about the printer's status? (This is generally at 127.0.0.1:631) Can you print a CUPS test page from there? –  Caleb Jul 8 '11 at 13:23
    
It says 'idle', and 'processing - idle' or something similar when I attempt to print. I haven't been able to print any test pages. See the output from the ping above - this may be insightful. –  ptrcao Jul 8 '11 at 16:00
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If CUPS is reporting that the printer is "idle" rather than offline or stoped, then the message from whatever program you used before about the printer being disconnected is probably mis-informed. Your ping doesn't show much... you can't ping ports, only IP addresses. You could scan them using nmap, but that's not the problem anyway. The problem is more likely you don't have the right cups drivers or for some other reason CUPS and the printer aren't speaking the same language. –  Caleb Jul 8 '11 at 16:03
    
When selecting the driver I provide a .pdd file direct from Brother at welcome.solutions.brother.com/bsc/public_s/id/linux/en/…, for use with Linux. I don't use the LPR driver provided because it doesn't appear to give access to the full range of printing options for some weird reason, but using the .pdd driver file does. Can you suggest anything from here? –  ptrcao Jul 8 '11 at 16:08
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1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Based on comments, it looks like you are using the wrong printer driver. Your are printing to a Belkin F5L049au print server, but you are trying to talk to it as if it understood the custom Brother language.

The print server is doing some magic to convert your documents to print over USB to whatever device you have connected. You could probably fix this using a generic postscript driver instead of the Brother custom one so that the print server understood the instructions.

However I would suggest that you've made the situation move complex than it needs to be. Your printer already has a network interface and does not need a print server device at all. Simply connect the printer directly to the network and let Linux and Windows both print to it directly over the network. You will be able to use all the custom Brother functions like settings for the duplexer from both Operating Systems and there will be no driver funkiness because of the protocol translation happening at the middle-man print-server.

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You can share that printer wirelessly without the print server, and you do not need either computer to be a print server. You connect the printer via a wired network link to your switch or router. It can then be reached wirelessly over your network from as many different computers as you like. Each can print to it as a network printer without any of the other computers being involved. Jobs will be queued on a first-come-first-serve basis, and if the printer is advertising itself as "busy" at any given moment new print jobs will wait until it's "idle", then send their jobs over. –  Caleb Jul 8 '11 at 16:36
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TL;DR Take the print server back and get your $138 refunded! At worst you need to buy an extra switch if you are out of wired network ports and an ethernet cable, total $10. The printer is fully network capable and your computers can connect through the wireless network and seamlessly talk to the printer directly via TCP/IP though the wired segment of your network. –  Caleb Jul 8 '11 at 16:41
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@ptraco: Yes that is exactly what I'm suggesting. There is no difference in this case between a "computer" and a "peripheral device". They both have the same kind of network interface and both qualify as "edge devices" in networking language. They printer will quite happily talk over your switch to any other node on your network, wireless or wired. –  Caleb Jul 8 '11 at 16:55
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In practice it's not likely too since it stays on all the time and DHCP tries to preserve addresses anyway, but you are right it might change. You can avoid that by giving it a static address, either in the router by assigning a static lease or just taking it by force with a manual ip set in the printer. –  Caleb Jul 9 '11 at 4:57
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Use the printer's control panel (or web interface) to type in an address in your network. If possible makes this outside of the normal DHCP window. If your router is giving out addresses via dhcp in the range from 192.168.1.10-200, try taking 9 or 210 or something like that. The range is from 1-254, but you don't want to steal 1 or 254. Look at your router settings to find what it is giving out, then pick something just outside of that range and enter as a manual IP in the printer settings. –  Caleb Jul 9 '11 at 5:19
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