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Samba as a print server

Another common way to network Ubuntu and Windows computers is to configure Samba as a print server. This will allow it to share printers installed on an Ubuntu server, whether locally or over the network.

Just as we did in using Samba as a file server, this section will configure Samba to allow any client on the local network to use the installed printers without prompting for a username and password.

If your environment requires stricter Access Controls see Share Access Control.

Install and configure CUPS

Before installing and configuring Samba as a print server, it is best to already have a working CUPS installation. See our guide on CUPS for details.

Install Samba

To install the samba package, run the following command in your terminal:

sudo apt install samba

Configure Samba

After installing samba, edit /etc/samba/smb.conf. Change the workgroup attribute to what is appropriate for your network:

workgroup = EXAMPLE

In the [printers] section, change the guest ok option to ‘yes’:

browsable = yes
guest ok = yes

After editing smb.conf, restart Samba:

sudo systemctl restart smbd.service nmbd.service

The default Samba configuration will automatically share any printers installed. Now all you need to do is install the printer locally on your Windows clients.

Further reading

This page was last modified 11 months ago. Help improve this document in the forum.