Enable Network Printer Sharing with Ubuntu Linux computers

Having a shared printer within a computer network is a nice thing to have. Since all computers within the network can access a remote printer to print documents. Maintenance cost is much more cheaper and easier since you only need to service only a single printer within a network.

Here’s how to enable Printer sharing with Ubuntu (or other Linux based computers) through GNOME :

At the computer with the printer

Administer Printers Ubuntu
  • First at the Desktop, go to System->Administration->Printing. A dialog will appear
  • Go to Server Settings, and check the “Share published printers connected to this system” checkbox

    Administer Printers Ubuntu

  • You may, optionally select “Allow users to cancel any job”
  • Click Apply, and close the dialog

At the client computer(s)

Network Printer Sharing Ubuntu, using Samba

  • From the Desktop, go to System->Administration->Printing. A dialog will appear
  • Check “Show shared printers from other systems” checkbox. Click Apply
  • Repeat the first step, this time click “Refresh Printer Queues” button. You shall see the list of shared printer from the server computer
  • Repeat this on other computers on the network to share the printer

That is all to it! Now you can print documents across your computer network.

14 Replies to “Enable Network Printer Sharing with Ubuntu Linux computers”

  1. sir

    i have no of windows xp and linux red hat ,
    i need a help for how to share the network printer between windows xp ,linux red hat and share folder like as my network place,
    kindly advice to me

  2. Hi, this is AWESOME! Like OMGWTFBBQ!, I had been doing the USB ferry thing for 6 months, thank you!

    Using your directions it is even possible to print from a different subnet without stuffing around with WINS nonsense! Here are my directions for doing so:

    Note that if we try and print from the different subnet (in this case using NAT on both sides with zeroshell), we get an error:


    This basically means that the printer is not at the address we are trying to print to. In fact, we won’t even find it the normal way.

    To add your printer from the client machine, you have to go into System ? administration ? Printing as per normal, then Settings, click advanced settings, and add the IP of the printer to the “browse servers” bit.

    From the server side, you may have to enable “Allow printing from the internet” so that clients not in the subnet can print.

    Now, back on the client end, in the Printer Configuration main window you should be able to see your printer. You won’t be able to edit the settings of the printer. But what you can do is copy it, and call it something else which CAN be edited. So do that first.

    Then, right click on the printer, click on properties and just change the device URI from something like:

    Where would be the IP of your printer.

    Hope this helps someone.

  3. Thank you, worked great. I was having a hard time trying to figure this out and the official Ubuntu guides wasn’t helping.

  4. OMG you just saved me lots of dollars and hours of frustration!!!! I can’t believe it was that simple, simply amazing. Here I was ferrying documents back and forth via USB flash this whole time. How embarrassing. Kudos to you my friend!

  5. Same works on Samba, if anyone wonders.

    I have a network-enabled HP 3600 printer, which is pain in the butt to install on windows, so I share it through Samba from an Ubuntu server.

  6. Hi,
    Thanks for this tip. I have an all in one printer and I was wondering how to get my scanner working over the LAN too. Any ideas ?

  7. I have an Internet acquaintance who is looking for a way to keep using the printer he already has (Apple dropped AppleTalk in the new OS, so his Mac can’t see the printer). I’m wondering how easy it is to share an Ubuntu-connected printer with a Mac on the same network.

  8. Hi
    I have two Ubuntu 8.04 computers, a desktop and a laptop. My USB printer is connected to the desktop. There is a common wireless router for both.
    I followed your instructions but am unable to see the ‘other computer’. And there is no printing.
    Please help

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  10. All hail the system-config-* stack!. A legacy originated way back to the legacy of RHL down to Fedora9 and now Ubuntu picked up one of the tools from the stack.

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