How do I set up my Ubuntu machine to allow other computers to print to it?

The set up is:

All computers are connected to the network

  1. 1 dual Ubuntu/Windows 7 netbook
  2. 1 multibooting Debian/Ubuntu/Windows XP desktop
  3. 1 Vista laptop
  4. 1 dual Windows 7/Mac desktop

Printer = Brother HL-4050 CDN connected to number (1) above

A solution that involves only GUI configuration tools please. I'm a native Windows user; command-line is painful to me.

Edit: I tried to use system-config-samba but can't seem to get printer sharing up this way? Is there a way to do it with that tool?

1 Answer 1


I had the same issue some time before and published my solution at my blog. All in all on your ubuntu with connected printer you just need to do:

  1. install cups (you'll find it for example in synaptic)
  2. browse to localhost:631
  3. configure the printer, so that you are able to print locally
  4. modify the printer: check the field called "Share This Printer"
  5. in the administration tab enable "Share printers connected to this system" and "Allow printing from the Internet"

On your Debian/Ubuntu clients edit /etc/cups/client.conf, this file should contain (replace SERVER with the IP of your server, PORT should be 631 by default):


Unfortunately I'm not really familiar with Windows, but I think it should be possible to tell them that there is a new printer server.

Kind regards.

  • How do I find out what the IP of my server is?
    – ptrcao
    May 27, 2011 at 9:47
  • Also, can anyone suggest how I would configure my Windows 7 client to be able to print to this computer as well?
    – ptrcao
    May 28, 2011 at 7:41
  • I know this isn't a Windows forum, but Cups is Linux-based, and also, how we configure the printer on the Windows end will depend on how we set up the Linux print server. Does anyone want to take another jab at the questions immediately above?
    – ptrcao
    Jun 19, 2011 at 0:48

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