[sf-lug] Installing and configuring CUPS PDF printer (highly abridged instructions)

Alex Kleider a_kleider at yahoo.com
Mon Mar 17 18:54:41 PDT 2008

--- RBV <GoodWriter2548 at earthlink.net> wrote:

> Hi:
> At the last SF-LUG meeting I was asked how to enable "printing" to
> PDF files in Ubuntu.
> Here's a highly abridged condensation of the instructions as given in
> the book "Ubuntu Hacks".
> 1. Use "sudo apt-get install cups-pdf" to install the PDF printer.
> 2. In the System menu, choose Administration > Printing to display
> the "Add a printer" dialog box.
> 3. In the "Add a printer" dialog box, choose Printer > Add a printer.
>    The utility takes several seconds to read the printer database,
> then displays the first Add a Printer dialog box.
> 4. In the first Add a Printer dialog box, choose Local Printer,
> choose PDF Printer, then click Forward.
>    The Add a Printer dialog box displays a second dialog box.
> 5. In the second Add a Printer dialog box, in the Manufacturer list
> choose Generic, then in the Model area choose postscript color
> printer.
> 6.  Click Apply to assert the changes.
> Open a program, choose File > Print, then choose
> postscript-color-printer.  The printer driver will create a PDF and
> place it in <home>/PDF.
> Note that you can also use System > Administration > Printing to
> select the postscript printer and from there find your way to the
> printer's configuration menu so as to print a PDF test page.

After upgrading from Ubuntu 7.4 to 7.10 I found that cups-pdf was
already installed.

Administration > Printing  gives me an Error: Could not launch menu
Failed to execute child process "gnome-cups-manager" (No such file or

Back to Synaptic and indeed, gnome-cups-manager needed to be installed.
Administration > Printing then offered a "New Printer" option.

Right clicking on "New Printer" gives an "add" option which when chosen
yields an "Add a Printer - Step 1 of 3: Printer Connection" box 

I followed Riley's instructions and got to the "Step 2 of 3: Printer
Driver" box and chose Generic, postscript was there as a default and
only when I clicked on it did the Forward change from ghosted out to a
real option. (That slowed me down a bit!) 

Step 3 of 3: Name is defaulted to "postscript-color"
I just left Description and Location blank as they were.
and then clicked "Apply."

When I open a program and choose File > Print, only Generic Postscript
comes up as an option (other than real printers.) There is no
"Postscript-color-printer" option. 

I can use this option to print but I think the result is a .ps file,
not a .pdf file.

a_kleider at yahoo.com

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