Re: pesky and persistent "driverless" Brother MFC-9340CDW
- Date: Fri, 4 Aug 2017 20:19:33 -0400
- From: Jape Person <japers@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: Re: pesky and persistent "driverless" Brother MFC-9340CDW
On 08/04/2017 06:39 PM, Brian wrote:
On Fri 04 Aug 2017 at 14:09:25 -0400, Jape Person wrote:
On 08/04/2017 06:37 AM, Brian wrote:
On Thu 03 Aug 2017 at 21:39:43 -0400, Jape Person wrote:
A few weeks ago a CUPS upgrade to our Debian testing systems
started showing a new driver for our Brother MFC-9340CDW in print
dialogs and in the CUPS printer list and in the
You'd think that was good news, but we've been unable to find any
way to make the queue for this "driverless" instance of the printer
It *is* good news. The printer was set up automatically, something people
have been asking for for years. No non-free drives, either. A
pity about the printout. That shouldn't happen, The cause would need
to be looked at. Maybe the printer is non-conforming to IPP Everywhere.
Well, it *would* be good news if it actually produced usable output. As
things stand right now, it's merely a way to waste time, paper, and toner.
I thought you would say that, and it is very reasonable to express such
sentiments. But where is your ire aimed at? Not at Brother, as far as I
can see. What do they say? Somebody there must have some knowledge about
IPP specifications. Maybe they are not aware that one of their printers
sets resolution to 600x2 dpi. Have you told them?
(I am assumimg you are seeing fallout from #868360 and this is the cause
of your frustration).
Was my tone more testy than I thought? I wasn't intending to express ire
at either Debian or Brother. I was just annoyed that there was no
obvious way to tell the system that I didn't want to see a queue that
With all of the provisions for other settings it just seemed odd to me
that neither CUPS nor config-system-printer had a clue in their user
interfaces as to how a user might indicate that s/he didn't want to see
the driverless printer. This was my first experience seeing one in
GNU/Linux, after all.
I'll admit I was tickled when I saw that there was a driver specifically for
this printer, and then not tickled when it didn't work but wouldn't go away.
cups-browsed detects printers or print queues. Its job is to keep them
visible; why else should it exist? You control visibility from its conf
file. If you try to delete a printer or print queue cups-browsed gets
upset and reinstates it. Perfectly normal if you think about it.
Hence, why I whined online -- in the hope that someone would tell me how
to do this the non-gui way. After all, the man pages I read indicated
that it could be done, but didn't seem to tell me how to do it. But you did!
The only way we can print with this printer is to do what we were
doing before the new "driverless" instance of the printer showed
up. We add a printer to the system via system-config-printer or the
CUPS Web browser dialog and deliberately select the Brother
MFC-9320CW Foomatic or Brother Script-3 driver. (That's not a typo.
I'm deliberately choosing a different model.) Both of those PPDs
work. I have to provide a deliberately altered name for this
instance so users can tell it from the one that doesn't work.
Brother provides software for this printer.
(URL line broken for readability).
When I first got the printer I updated its firmware. This isn't as easy as
you might think. You have to have a Windows or Mac computer to perform the
update, and I didn't own one. I purchased a little Windows 10 gizmo from
SimplyNUC so that I could do this update, and so that I could perform
firmware updates on a couple of GPS devices.
I have never thought updating printer firmware was easy or even possible
from Linux. No Windows or Mac here either. I'll look at SimplyNUC.
It's sad, isn't it? There must be enough Linux / Unix folks using
brother printers to make it worth Brother's trouble to provide a utility
for this. I guess most environments have either Windows or Mac
available, but mine didn't until I got the little NUC. $300 so I can do
Making lemonade, I'll probably try to play some old games on the little
box. There's always a silver lining.
I also tried the proprietary software, just for grins. I never intended to
use anything other than what's in the official repos on my Debian systems.
The helter-skelter way the driver installation directions were written and
the absolutely hilarious hodge-podge of license notices and balky scripts
was kind of horrifying. But I'll admit that everything worked, once I weeded
out the inappropriate directions and fixed the installation. And I
appreciated that all was installed in a manner that made it easy to remove.
The functionality of the proprietary printer driver was no better than that
of the MFC-9320CW driver from CUPS, other than it included the ability to
monitor toner levels. But all of that sort of stuff is readily available via
the Web interface of the printer.
Since I have workaround, I can't bring myself to re-install the proprietary
driver. I do have to use the Web interface to see the maintenance
information, and I have to get scans via my wife's Android tablet. But I
just found the proprietary drivers to be icky.
I mentioned the Brother software merely to inform that it exists, not to
recommend it. Driverless printing is the way to go and the future (give
or take printer bugs).
I think you're right. Too bad Brother isn't saying whether or not the
latest firmware upgrade actually fixes this problem. Since my last
firmware upgrade resulted in me getting a version which isn't even
listed in their update history any more, I'm loathe to be a first adapter.
The particularly annoying thing about this situation is that I
cannot delete the "driverless" instance of the printer from CUPS /
system-config-printer. The instant it is deleted, it is
automatically re-detected and added back to the printer list. But
anyone who chooses to print to it is going to get a distorted or
I was able to set a policy in the instance so that only root can
print to it, so a regular user isn't going to waste time and paper.
Still, it would be nicer if I could turn off the advertisement that
the printer and the operating system is providing for the
"CreateIPPPrinterQueues No" in cups-browsed.conf. Or switch off
Bonjour broadcasting (AirPrint) on the printer.
Hmmm. I turned off AirPrint through the Web interface right from the
beginning. I just checked it again, and the interface indicates that
AirPrint is turned off.
I'll go further down this path if other tactics don't work.
Without AirPrint enabled (and maybe IPP) cups-browsed is unable to
detect the printer. (Is this another printer bug? :) )
Thank you so much for your time and effort. I didn't think of looking in
cups-browsed.conf because I thought turning off AirPrint should have done
So "CreateIPPPrinterQueues No" makes the ptinter invisible?
As it turned out, I didn't have to edit the config file. Turning off
WiFi Direct made the driverless printer invisible. Is it possible that
Brother is using "WiFi Direct" as a synonym for Bonjour?
I'm unschooled on this stuff, so forgive if the question is dumb!
Thanks again, Brian!