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- Poll . 

The printing manager configuration should be in

Posted by  on Aug 24 2002

Peripherals59%59%59% 59%
System24%24%24% 24%
Somewhere else2%2%2% 2%
I don't care15%15%15% 15%
Votes: 1680


 by axeljaeger on: Aug 25 2002
Score 50%

But there should be also other peripherals, Scanners for example

Reply to this


 other what?

 by damiancito on: Sep 19 2002
Score 50%

uhm.. what did you call 'em? :o)

Reply to this



 by DecayingOmega on: Aug 25 2002
Score 50%

Camera, Mice, Keyboards, Joysticks, Game Controllers, LCDs, Sound Devices, and other stuff which doesnt come to mind right now but should be in here

Reply to this



 by mathjazz on: Aug 25 2002
Score 50%

mouse, keyboard, camera and sound modules already exist.
It would be nice to have a module for scanner and other devices, but usually linux distributors (suse, redhat, mandrake) already have this functions. I don't know how is it with bsd and other kde supported OSes.

Reply to this


 To System! Reasons:

 by anonymous on: Aug 26 2002
Score 50%


I was very surprised, when an e-Mail made me aware of this poll. I don't
know if this will have any relevance to the final decision or who organized
the poll. I don't know if more than 50 people will read my arguments (and if
so, it will likely be *after* they voted), but I want to make them known.

There was a (short) discussion about it already on the developer mailing list
back in January. This is (slightly edited) what I had to say then:

I am not a developer, but doing a lot of work related to printing. Not the
private printing at home, but enterprise level printing in large print shops
or office workgroups.

I have been documenting the new KDEPrint module recently, writing the KDEPrint
Handbook and contributing to the http://printing.kde.org/ website.

IMHO it is a bad move for the KDEPrint related kcontrol module to be taken to
"Peripherals". (This is not only because it requires me to change things and
screenshots for the new documentation, which time could have been used to
document *new* things and fill existing gaps.)

To put the printing manager into peripherals might seem logical to someone
who only has a printer connected via /dev/lp0 at his disposal. But printing
has a lot more than that to cover....

I have read the argument "it is more easy to find in peripherals as users
expect it to find it there". Well I don't think this is true. And I myself
didn't look for it there, and I only found it after I systematically
scanned the whole visible "tree" in kcontrol. A lot of existing KDE users
will suffer the same confusion when they use KDE3 the first time. And even
converts from the MS Windows OS will not expect print administration amongst
"peripherals". You look it up yourself, if you want to know: it is even an
item of its own.

When I first realized the change, I thought it to have been done in error,
or by someone who had shifted it for the pure sake of "changing".

I have read the argument "it is psychologically easier for users to touch it
if we don't call it a 'system' task." Well, I won't really comment a lot on this
argument. But a user will be in trouble if she just clicks around in the printer
manager without knowing what to do, even if you put it in "peripherals". Moving
the module doesn't ease the task one iota.

Printing is not at all comparable to configuring a mouse or a keyboard (difficult
as this might be in cases). And there is a reason, why you traditionally
needed root access to configure printers and printing in Unix. There are
statistics that point out: the effort for administrators to handle network
printing (including Windows network printing, which is in my experience *not*
a lot easier to administer...) in their day-to-day tasks consumes up to 66% of
their time (the most moderate statistic I know of, speaks of 25%).

Printing and network printing is (and remains) one of the most complicated
tasks for everyone dealing with day-to-day IT business. (Lots of different
hardware, lots of different protocols, lots of printer languages, page
description languages, implementations, conversion software, filters ...no
one single standard involved agreed ba everybody. To get a document as displayed
on screen to be read on paper involves a lot of error-prone steps and a lot
of correctly configured components, ahrdware and software.)

The work of Michael Goffioul for "making KDE/Unix ready for the desktop" is
in my opinion still very much underestimated -- even inside the KDE core
developer group. This is likely "the natural thing" of Open Source or Free
Software developement, because the developers do normally "scratch were they feel
itches" -- and their printing problems (my guess) are only related to printing
on small parallel or USB attached printers. They probably can't imagine
a kcontrol module responsible for 500 or more printers and more than 10.000
users... And the same goes for "home users" of KDE, who likely will
determine the outcome of this poll. You're basing yourself on a very
narrow perspective when you decide on your own personal experience alone!

To me, "printing from the desktop" starts, true, at the "desktop at home"
at the private users' box, but it stretches to the enterprise desktop
(probably only running "Thin Clients") with a network of 1000s of users.

And here it is were we talk "business"!

You might not know (but I tell you now as much as I can), that there are some
big institutions out there, with a lot of financial power, who are still
heavily using OS/2 on their desktops, running some proprietary ERP (lets call
it so, even if it is banking or insurance...;-) software. They will still
do so for the next 6 or more months. But they have their task forces already
investigating what would be the replacement for OS/2: believe me, Windows 2000
and Windows XP are not the only candidates. (Maybe I am not telling you
any news here, but some of you might have forgotten about it...) And I know
too: those evaluation teams are also considering KDE as a platform for their
new desktops and Qt for the porting of their programs (if they are not written
from scratch).

For users from that corner, decent printing and related administrative tasks
is a mission critical administrator as well as day-to-day desktop user issue.
They will never compare it (for lack of alternative) to a mouse or a keyboard.
These two normally "just work" (true there are now issue with the Euro-
Character, and there is a bit of complication to get it from generating a
keycode by hitting a key to displaying a certain letter on screen -- but
do you hear as many cries for help in the newsnet about it as about

They are testing CUPS right now to see if it fits their needs (they need
TLS/SSL-encryption for their printjobs crossing the inter- or intra-nets
and other features). And they were very pleased and impressed to see what
KDEPrint as a CUPS frontend is already now giving to them, when they were
lurking at the KDE booths at various national and international trade
shows in Germany over the last 12 months.

KDEPrint is an essential feature for making "Linux ready for the desktop"
(and in some environments even more important than KOffice, probably). And
thanks to Michael (and his pre-decessors and supporters in the development)
it is already *ready* for the desktop, due to its nearly full-scale CUPS

To move printing management from "system" to peripherals doesn't sound logical
to people from an enterprise background; it doesn't make it easier for
the user to find it; it doesn't make it easier for a user to *use* it;
and it doesn't reflect the importance of printing for KDEs success on
the desktop.

So if there should be a move at all: t h e o n l y p l a c e o u t s i d e
o f t h e " S y s t e m " b r a n c h i s a t t h e t o p l e v e l !
(Yes, I regard "Printing" to be of the same importance as "Sound" and "Power
Control" for enterprise level desktop computing...) [Maybe the home user will
disagree with my last sentence, and I understand that ;-) ]

Printing at the top level of KDE Control Center would also make it possible to
structure the different submodules of KDEPrint more: printing manager,
add-printer-wizard, kprinter, kjobviewer, command builder, etc.

Oh, are you at all aware what power and volume of features is involved in
KDEPrint at the present stage?!

To make "Printing" visible on the top level of kcontrol would reflect all the
needs that came to the fore so far: easier finding and accessing the module,
encouraging people who are horrified from touching "System" (I am not so sure
if I wouldn't prefer to keep them away from printing too ;-), reflecting
the importance of KDEPrint for the system, etc.

Thanks for reading and considering.


Reply to this



 by uga on: Aug 27 2002
Score 50%

Being responsible for this poll (I was the one that suggested it), I feel like having to explain why I did so...

I found myself that, in a CVS version time ago, somebody had moved the Printing Manager from System to Peripherals, which I thought (at the moment) the reason was making it more easy to be found for the average user.

Not long ago, I upgraded to a newer CVS, which had put back the Printing Manager to System... I said... why not ask users how they feel about it??? They are the ones that are going to have the need to learn it!

I'm sorry that I didn't read the discussion you mentioned in the mail-list at that moment. Maybe I was away or it was in core-devel so I didn't get it...

So that's why you have this poll.

Now... I half-agree with you, but not totally.

You said: " But a user will be in trouble if she just clicks around in the printer manager"

_THAT_ is the problem. _WHY_ should a user get into trouble just clicking there?

1.- if she did get in trouble, the config tool is not properly designed. A DE is meant to help, not confuse its users.

2.- if the user is not root, they cannot really make many changes (add/remove printers). So what's the problem?

3.- Is it a security problem for a user to be able to add a simple printer? I think this should be an easier task. The local (parallel) installation could be a problem, but not adding a remote printer, whose security should be checked in the server (IMHO)

4.- It's not a good design "Hiding" things. The proper thing to do is showing users to AVOID it. CUPS is a really powerfull tool, but not every average user makes full use of it... why not just add a simple interface first, and put an "ADVANCED OPTIONS" tab somewhere? Average users avoid the "Advanced" options usually. Even warn them with an Icon and some Message if necessary.

But PLEASE, making things difficult to find is not the solution.

5.- I know that it can be hard to do all the documentation of a soft (especially when it's desirable to translate it to so many languages), so it could be difficult to make such a change for this coming version, but I hope developers take it into account for version 3.2


Reply to this


 Linux Printing

 by Traktopel on: Aug 29 2002
Score 50%

it doesn't matter too much to me cause my god damn printer won't work in Linux.

I had it working in Mandrake... but that is about it.

Anyways, I think it should be in peripherals... along with all the other devices the guy in the second post metioned.

Reply to this



 by CARTMAN on: Sep 17 2002
Score 50%

KDE CVS now has re-arranged kcontrol menu and Printers are in Peripherals lets get a new poll pls?

Reply to this


 Done, yes!

 by uga on: Sep 19 2002
Score 50%

That's right. I just updated from cvs, and the printer manager has gone into peripherals (as well as other structure changes in kcontrol)

Reply to this

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