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  • Lexmark's Linux Secret

    Phoronix: Lexmark's Linux Secret

    Most of the time at Phoronix we focus on looking at the Linux graphics performance of the software drivers and hardware, since traditionally that has been one of the most troubling areas of Linux hardware support. Tides though have turned as AMD continues to back their own open-source strategy with providing documentation and pushing out code that enables open-source hardware support from 3D acceleration to power management, while Intel continues to back their fully open-source model too. Another area of hardware support that has caused much grief for users has been with printer support. Printers are not nearly as complex as a modern-day graphics processor, but the different vendors have not been quick to offer up any Linux support -- and binary-only drivers frequently back the ones that do. There is one printer manufacturer though that as of last year has begun supporting Linux from top to bottom with their entire line-up of printers. Not only are they providing CUPS drivers, but also they are even printing Tux in the corner of every box they ship right besides the Windows and Apple logos. Do you know who we are talking about? Probably not, but it's Lexmark. After months of wrangling within the company, Lexmark has stepped up to become a Linux and open-source friendly company. We are seeing how far this Linux support extends as we try out the Lexmark Pro905 Platinum multi-function printer.

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=14735

  • #2
    Lets hope they add scanner support to their Linux drivers like Epson, H.P., and Canon have done.

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    • #3
      Its great to see companies finally starting to really support Linux. Last time I bought a printer I went with HP because of their great Linux support in HPLIP. It seems next time I get a printer I might have a little more choice.

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      • #4
        i was wondering whether it's still 1apr in your time zone for a while when looking at this article

        this is pretty surprising.

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        • #5
          The test should cover the USB printing, too.
          And more printers should be tested (especialy those cheap/cheapest inkjet Lexmark printers).
          I've got many Lexmark laser ethernet printers from few years and those work out of the box on many Linux distributions on default PostScript drivers but up to now I've been getting off from any Lexmark inkjet printers because of lack of Linux support.

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          • #6
            Samsung also offers great linux support. They even have a linux gui installation app on their driver cd. Though I think they are proprietary, but I don't know for sure.

            Well they work as a charm at least.

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            • #7
              Do they support the yellow microscopic dots as well?

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              • #8
                Great, Lexmark gives you a multifunction printer and then you can only print. I use a Brother multifunction and i can print, scan and even send faxes from my Ubuntu or Mandriva.

                You can find the drivers below and the drivers work on 32-bit and 64-bit

                http://solutions.brother.com/linux

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by V!NCENT View Post
                  Do they support the yellow microscopic dots as well?
                  I forgot all about those.

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                  • #10
                    I have not used all that many wireless all-in-one printer/scanner combos, but all the ones I have used don't actually allow you to scan from the PC side when in wireless/ethernet mode either in Windows, Linux, etc. No scanner is detected (which would explain your XSane woes), and therefore no direct driver support. In my experience that is normal. If the printer had been hooked up via USB, I think you would have been able to use the scanner as you expected to.

                    I have a Lexmark X4650 here and it has the same behavior, except what is REALLY nice is that when I set up the scan at the local device it allows me to choose what computer on the network by hostname I want the scan to be sent to and also picks up a list of compatible applications on that host and asks what application format (PDF, DOC, etc) I would like the scan to saved to! I get back to my desk and it is open and running in the application. Slick!

                    -S

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                    • #11
                      as negated said, not being able to scan is because your running it as a network printer (cable or wireless), if you hook it up as usb printer this will work. As far as I know this is also the case for HP printer/scanner combo's

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by negated View Post
                        I have not used all that many wireless all-in-one printer/scanner combos, but all the ones I have used don't actually allow you to scan from the PC side when in wireless/ethernet mode either in Windows, Linux, etc.
                        The Canon MP-640 allows you to both print from and scan to a Linux machine via Wi-FI and it works absolutely brilliantly.

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                        • #13
                          Nice for printers already bought but for new ones I'd still opt for HP due to there very nice opensource HPLIP which provides a great out-of-the-box experience on almost every Linux-distribution.

                          Is Lexmark planning on providing opensource drivers in the future?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Xilanaz View Post
                            as negated said, not being able to scan is because your running it as a network printer (cable or wireless), if you hook it up as usb printer this will work. As far as I know this is also the case for HP printer/scanner combo's
                            I use a Brother MFC and i can scan over network. This is possible for Windows, Mac and Linux. It is all in the scannerdriver.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tball View Post
                              Samsung also offers great linux support. They even have a linux gui installation app on their driver cd. Though I think they are proprietary, but I don't know for sure.

                              Well they work as a charm at least.
                              I'm pretty sure the samsung drivers are proprietary but there is also the splix project which offers free versions.

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