Installing a Brother Printer on Gentoo

I’ve been migrating over to Gentoo from Ubuntu (more on this later) and today had the lovely experience of installing a printer. Since at least 2 other computers will be needing these instructions, here we are:

Install CUPS

  1. emerge cups
  2. /etc/init.d/cupsd start
  3. rc-update add cupsd default

Install Driver

  1. Download the LPD and PPD RPM drivers from Brother’s Linux driver site.
  2. emerge rpm tcsh
  3. rpm  -ihv  --nodeps  (lpr-drivername)
  4. rpm  -ihv  --nodeps  (cupswrapper)
  5. Verify the drivers installed correctly: rpm  -qa  |  grep  -e (lpr-drivername)  -e  (cupswrapper-drivername) (if this is your only rpm package, just use rpm -qa)
  6. Create a symlink to the filter: ln -s /usr/lib/cups/filter/brlpdwrapper[printer name] /usr/libexec/cups/filter/brlpdwrapper[printer name]

Add printer

  1. In a browser, go to the CUPS server at http://localhost:631/
  2. Click Add Printer and enter a name. Location and description are optional, but user-friendly.
  3. On the next page select: Device: AppSocket/HP JetDirect
  4. On the next page enter: Device URI: socket://192.168.1.11 (substitute with the IP address of your printer)
  5. The final page has a list of printer manufacturers. Skip that and click Choose File. Select the proper PPD file at /usr/share/cups/model/(printermodel).ppd. Click next.
  6. Print a test page and enjoy!

As an aside, I did stumble upon the Brother PPD source code, however there were no make files for my printer, nor were there any LPD drivers. It is unfortunate to have rpm or dpkg as a dependency for my printer drivers, but so be it – they’re lightweight packages on their own.

4 Comments

  1. ac Said,

    April 21, 2011 @ 3:31 am

    Thanks for writing this up, it was very helpful. I also had to emerge a2ps since print jobs would fail when the Brother driver tried to execute a non-existent a2ps.

  2. al Said,

    October 19, 2011 @ 9:41 am

    I’m not getting a brlpdwrapper* anywhere after this install process. What am I missing?

  3. jaaf Said,

    November 23, 2012 @ 8:10 pm

    I have a 64 bit plateform and before installing the cups drivers I had to create a /usr/lib64/cups/filter folder.

    After setting the printer I had also to enter this (taken from Ubuntu) brprintconf_dcp750cw -pt A4
    to avoid a cut of the text at the top of the page

  4. wgjtyu Said,

    June 2, 2013 @ 2:38 am

    Thank you! I successfully install my FAX2820 printer on Gentoo.