System Administration Guide: Printing

IPP Compared to the RFC-1179 Protocol

The RFC-1179 protocol has served for decades as the standard network printing protocol. The protocol was originally designed to perform a very limited set of operations. The RFC-1179 protocol lacks a common representation for status information. In addition, this protocol offers only basic print job options. Conversely, the design of IPP includes features that are lacking in the RFC-1179 and BSD protocols. With IPP, a broad set of operations can be performed. These operations make use of a core set of common attributes by using a common representation and encoding method. Also, IPP enables encryption and authentication to be used between a print client and a print server. Finally, IPP provides a means for extending operations and attributes, while maintaining backward compatibility and interoperability. One of the results of the evolution of the RFC-1179 protocol is that it has several conflicting vendor extensions to overcome, making IPP the preferred choice of printing protocols.

For more information about using IPP to set up and administer printers, see Configuring the Internet Printing Protocol and Appendix A, Using the Internet Printing Protocol.