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Guide to Printers and Printing

Editing /etc/qconfig

The /etc/qconfig configuration file can be edited with your text editor of choice. There are unenforced rules concerning when you can and cannot edit /etc/qconfig without halting or otherwise corrupting the operation of the spooler.

Modifying /etc/qconfig While Jobs are Processing

/etc/qconfig should never be edited when jobs are processing. This is especially true when your system has a large number (greater than 25) of printers that are generally pretty busy. When the qdaemon receives notification from enq that a new Job Description File (JDF) exists, the qdaemon examines the dates on both /etc/qconfig and /etc/qconfig.bin, the binary version of /etc/qconfig. If /etc/qconfig is younger than /etc/qconfig.bin, the qdaemon doesnot accept any new jobs, including the one that caused it to examine the aforementioned files, until all currently running jobs have finished processing. When the jobs have finished processing, the qdaemon creates a new version of /etc/qconfig.bin.

If you cause the qdaemon to go into this state while jobs are processing, it is possible for the spooler to hang. If you modify /etc/qconfig under these conditions, and if any printers are still generating output, your best option is to leave the system alone and see if it comes back to life after all the jobs have finished processing. If zero printers are producing output or the spooler appears to be hung, see Cleaning Up and Starting Over section of Spooler Troubleshooting .

Attention: It is worth repeating. Do not cause a change to /etc/qconfig while jobs are processing. Aside from editing /etc/qconfig and writing a new version of the file to disk with a text editor, you can cause the same effect by using smit to change a queue property or a parameter value.

Creating Queue With an Editor

The root user can edit /etc/qconfig and define queues with a text editor. One situation where this should not be done is when the backend for the spooler queue is piobe. Queues that use piobe as backend must have an associated virtual printer definition. In this situation, the root user should use smit to create the queue. Using smit will run several programs that create the virtual printer definition.

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