System Administration Guide: Solaris Printing
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Introduction to Setting Up Printers

A print server is a system on which a print queue is configured and makes the printer available to other systems on the network. A print client is a system that utilizes configured print queues. For more information, see The Solaris Print Client-Server Process.

Printers can also be divided into two categories, local and remote. A local printer refers to a print queue that has been defined on a system that is local to you. A remote printer refers to a print queue that is defined anywhere but your local system. These terms do not have anything to do with whether the printer is physically attached to a system or to the network, but rather where the print queue was configured. Where the print queue is configured determines the server for that printer. Often, the print server supporting a building full of printers is the same system.

Another way to view printers and printer setup is how they are connected to the world. Some printers are directly attached to the print server by a wire. These printers are referred to as attached printers. If a printer is attached to the network, rather than to a desktop or server, it is called a network printer. The terms local and remote refer to print queue configuration. The terms directly attached and network‐attached refer to the physical connection of the printer hardware. Referring to a printer as an attached or a network printer defines the way the printer is physically connected. When you are referring to a local or a remote printer, you are referring to how the print queue for that printer was defined. Sometimes, the use of these terms can be confusing, because a printer that is physically attached to a system also most likely has a print queue that was defined on a local system. Similarly, print queues for network printers are more than likely defined on a system that is remote to your local system. This is the reason that attached and network printers are often referred to as local and remote printers.

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