[Scribus] Printing tabloid landscape to Laserjet 5SiMx - Help!

John Jordan johnxj
Sat Mar 11 08:30:15 CET 2006

On 10 Mar 2006, at 23:39, Steve Jacobs wrote:

> Adobe PostScript level 2 printer. The PPD file is properly installed >
> (as far as I know). > > Thanks for the suggestions.
> Still, the fact that cups reports the wrong paper sizes for the
> printer suggests that it's reading the wrong ppd or the ppd contains
> the wrong information. Scribus is unlikely to print very dependably
> unless it gets the the right printer information from cups via the
> ppd.
> If in fact there is no other ppd to try, I'd do one of these things:

At this point I' no longer positive that I have the right PPD. In fact, I 
can't even figure out what is installed. A search of *.ppd revealed:

/etc/cups/ppd/laserjet5Si.ppd                 25,431   6/25/2005
/usr/share/cups/model/HPLJ5SIM.PPD   36,762   6/25/2005

Unfortunately it would probably take me weeks of study to figure 
out which folder is which, whether it matters that there are two 
different PPD files in different folders and which one is installed in 

I do know that the printer is a Laserjet 5SiMx. The "Mx" was added 
to the model name for printers that have the PostScript SIMM in 
them (as mine does). In the Windows world there are two drivers for 
this printer -- one is the PostScript driver and is labeled for the 
"Mx" printer. The other is the PCL5 driver, and is just labeled "5Si." 
You can install them both, and some users do. Printing to the PCL 
driver is frequently faster, which is important for long print jobs. This 
printer was designed to handle print jobs involving thousands of 
pages per job and taking all day to complete, so speed is 
frequently an issue. In my case, I bought this printer new in 1996 
and it now has 2.4 million copies on it, almost all printed from 
Windows using the PostScript driver over ethernet. I've had the 
occasional problem, but nothing remotely like the mess I'm having 
printing to it from Linux. Let's hope it's just a PPD issue.

I'm pretty sire the HPLJ5SIM.PPD file is the one currently in use. 
How can I verify that it is the one CUPS is using?

Also, how can I find out if this is the best/latest PPD file to use? 

> 1. Grab a ppd (from linuxprinting.org or wherever) for some other
> laserjet that describes same resolution and paper sizes. Maybe another
> lj5 incarnation.

I went there and after 15 minutes of reading I'm more confused than 
when I started. It's a typical Linux page -- gives you every detail in 
the world whether it's useful or not. I don't want to earn a degree in 
CompSci just to get my printer working in Linux. :(

There was a link to a page with PPD files. I navigated to the one for 
the 5SiMx. But I can't download the PPD. When I select it it 
suddenly opens it in a page in a browser showing the text of the file.

> 2. Open the ppd in a text editor, scroll down to the paper size
> declarations, and manually change them to the right values. I've done
> this before and it often works. Don't forget to restart cups when
> you're done.

I've heard of doing this. But in my case this printer is so common 
and so old that surely this would not be necessary. I'm serious 
when I say HP sold millions of these, starting about 1995. That 
there would not be a proper PPD file for it is inconceivable. 
Besides, I print to it from my Windows desktop using a PPD file 
that works perfectly and displays every feature without fail. The 
question is which is the right PPD for Linux and how to make sure 
it is installed.

Thanks for the suggestions. :)

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