System Administration Guide: Printing

Troubleshooting No Output (Nothing Prints)

When nothing prints, there are three general areas to check:

If you get a banner page, but nothing else, this is a special case of incorrect output. See Troubleshooting Incorrect Output.

Check the Hardware

The hardware is the first area to check. As obvious as it sounds, you should make sure that the printer is plugged in and turned on. In addition, you should refer to the manufacturer's documentation for information about hardware settings. Some computers use hardware switches that change the characteristics of a printer port.

The printer hardware includes the printer, the cable that connects it to the computer, and the ports into which the cable plugs at each end. As a general approach, you should work your way from the printer to the computer. Check the printer. Check where the cable connects to the printer. Check the cable. Check where the cable connects to the computer.

Check the Network

Problems are more common with remote print requests that are going from a print client to a print server. You should make sure that network access between the print server and print clients is enabled.

If the network is running the Network Information Service Plus (NIS+), see System Administration Guide: Naming and Directory Services (NIS+) for instructions to enable access between systems. If the network is not running NIS or NIS+, before you set up print servers and print clients, include the Internet address and system name for each client system in the /etc/hosts file on the print server. Also, the IP address and system name for the print server must be included in the /etc/hosts file of each print client system.

Check the LP Print Service

For printing to work, the LP scheduler must be running on the print server. If it is not running, you need to start it using the following command:

# svcadm enable application/print/server

In addition to the scheduler running, a printer must be enabled and accepting requests before it will produce any output. If the LP print service is not accepting requests for a printer, the submitted print requests are rejected. Usually, in that instance, the user receives a warning message after submitting a print request. If the LP print service is not enabled for a printer, print requests remain queued on the system until the printer is enabled.

In general, you should analyze a printing problem as follows:

The procedures found in Troubleshooting Miscellaneous Printing Problems use this strategy to help you troubleshoot various problems with the LP print service.