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HP All-in-One Printing Products - Linux Support Overview

Introduction

This document provides details about the Linux Operating System, Linux drivers for HP All-in-One products, and resources to locate additional information. Linux is an emerging OS with enormous growth rates and future potential. HP views Linux as a critical component in its overall business strategy. Click this link for additional information about Linux: www.linux.hp.com .

This site or other HP sites will provide additional details as they become available.

Linux details

Target customer

The primary target markets for Linux products and services are server and client operating system environments. Customers who use Linux as a client operating system (for example a desktop PC running Linux) might be learning or experimenting with the Linux Client OS as an intellectual hobby. These customers are familiar with the various Linux distributions, development community, and Internet-based utilities and communication tools. The second type of printing customer uses Linux for its simplicity and economy.

Linux distribution

The Linux OS is primarily distributed two ways:

  • Internet: Linux is available on the Internet for anyone to download. Click this link to visit a Linux Web site and download Linux: www.sourceforge.net .

  • Commercial distribution: Packaged Linux distributions are commercially available from vendors such as Red Hat (North America), Caldera (Asia), SuSE (Europe), and others. These vendors add value by bundling documentation, installation procedures, useful tools and applications, and software support with the Linux source and executable code. Commercially packaged distributions are integrated, tested, and delivered on a CD. Packaged distribution is the most popular way for customers to acquire Linux, as many find downloading the software from the Web cumbersome and time-consuming.

Sourceforge.net

Sourceforge.net is the official Web site for open source project development. The Web site acts as a repository for Open Source code, and provides tools that help facilitate and manage the interactive nature of public code development. Sourceforge.net also acts as the most common non-commercial distribution point for Open Source software.

Linux drivers for HP All-in-One products

Linux drivers for HP All-in-One products are updated frequently. Visit the Hewlett-Packard Linux Imaging and Printing software (HPLIP) Web site at http://hplipopensource.com Non-HP site to determine what products and features are supported and to download the HPLIP software.

NOTE: Linux printer drivers do not ship with HP printers.

HP works with vendors such as Red Hat, Caldera, and SuSE to integrate HP-developed Linux All-in-One drivers into their packaged distributions, as this is how most customers acquire the Linux OS.

NOTE: The non-HP Linux community delivers reverse-engineered HP printer Linux drivers. These drivers were not developed with assistance from Hewlett-Packard and therefore lack the print quality and performance features included in HP printer drivers. HP recommends that customers use HP Linux printer drivers in order to optimize their printing experience. Customers should look for the driver name, “HP-developed…,” when selecting a Linux printer driver.

Installing the Linux driver

Visit the Hewlett-Packard Linux Imaging and Printing software (HPLIP) Web site at http://hplipopensource.com Non-HP site to get installation instructions and updates as the driver or installation process changes.

Lindows

HP will be marketing several computers preloaded with Lindows. Lindows is a version of Linux that is emulates and runs Windows programs. Since Lindows is based on the Debian release of Linux, the All-in-One Linux drivers should work correctly. Current planning is for some limited driver functionality to be preloaded into Lindows. Since Lindows is still currently in development, this may change.

Technical details about Linux drivers for HP All-in-One products

Printing experience

Unlike Windows and Macintosh operating systems which are based on a graphical user interface (GUI), Linux is based on a textual (command-line based) interface similar to UNIX and MS-DOS operating systems. At its basic level, the user interface that Linux users experience when printing is textual. However, many software application developers have created GUIs for most printing functions to simulate the Windows printing experience.

Printer language

PostScript is Linux's dominant graphical and printer language. Since HP All-in-One products support PCL printer languages rather than PostScript, HP is developing Linux printer drivers that will use a version of Ghostscript conversion software. Ghostscript software is primarily used for converting PostScript (PS) files into non-PS output that can be handled by non-PostScript printers.

Minimum system requirements

A complete list of the current minimum system requirements and supported products is available at the Hewlett-Packard Linux imaging and Printing (HPLIP) software Web site at http://hplipopensource.com Non-HP site .

Localization

Since Linux does not require a graphical user interface (GUI), localization is a non-issue for printer driver developers.

Software developers who added a GUI to their applications may choose to localize their GUIs or allow distributions such as SuSE, Red Hat, or Caldera to provide localization.

Connection options

HP All-in-One products have the same connection options in Linux as in Windows.

Linux support

The primary means of communication for the Linux community is via sourceforge.net. Linux support will not be listed on the printer box. In addition, Linux support is not delivered via standard means for our Windows and Mac customers (for example, the driver is only available via the Web, not in the box.) There will currently be no phone support. HP Customer Care will direct HP Linux customers to http://hplipopensource.com. There will be instructions for installing and using the driver there, as well as support resources through FAQs, Web documents, and feedback forms.

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