12.3. Installing the Software

PPD (PostScript printer description) is the computer language that describes the properties, like resolution, and options, for example, duplex unit, of PostScript printers. These descriptions are necessary to use of the various printer options in CUPS. Without a PPD file, the print data would be forwarded to the printer in a “raw” state, which is usually not desired. During the installation of SUSE LINUX, a lot of PPD files are preinstalled to enable even printers without PostScript support to be used.

To configure a PostScript printer, the best approach is to get a suitable PPD file. Many such PPDs are available in the package manufacturer-PPDs which is automatically installed within the scope of the standard installation (see 12.5.4. “PPD Files in Various Packages” and 12.6.2. “No Suitable PPD File Available for a PostScript Printer”).

New PPD files can be stored in the directory /usr/share/cups/model/ or added to the print system with YaST (see “Manual Configuration”). Subsequently, the PPD file can be selected during the installation.

Be careful if a printer manufacturer wants you to install entire software packages in addition to modifying configuration files. First, this kind of installation would result in the loss of the support provided by SUSE and, second, print commands may work differently and the system may no longer be able to address devices of other manufacturers. For this reason, the installation of manufacturer software is not recommended.