Mac Meets Printer

One of the biggest complaints about the original Mac OS X was that at the outset, not many printer companies had rewritten their printer drivers—the software that controls various printer models—for Mac OS X. Fortunately, the situation has improved: Today’s Mac OS X comes with hundreds of printer drivers from Epson, HP, Lexmark, Canon, and others.

Tip

The Tiger installer described in Appendix A even offers to give you the strangely named but wonderful GIMP-Print, a package of high quality printer drivers for Mac OS X. These drivers give new life to hundreds of current and older Epson, Canon, HP, and Lexmark printers.

Setting Up a Printer

The beauty of Mac OS X is that setting up a printer for the first time is incredibly easy. The first time you want to print something, follow this guide:

  1. Connect the printer to the Mac, and then turn the printer on.

    Inkjet printers usually connect to your USB jack. Laser printers generally hook up to your Ethernet connector. (If you’re on an office network, the laser printer may already be connected somewhere else on the network, saving you this step. If you’re hooking the printer straight into your Mac’s Ethernet jack, you may need an Ethernet crossover cable to connect it, rather than a standard Ethernet cable.)

    Note

    Most Ethernet- or network-connected laser printers communicate with your Mac using a language called AppleTalk. If you have such a printer, here is step 1.5: Open the Network pane of System Preferences and double-click your ...

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