Kali Linux Network Printer
While Kali Linux is great and comes with a lot of great penetration testing tools, it isn’t too friendly when it comes to other tasks, such as installing a network (Wi-Fi) Hewlett Packard (HP) printer. Ubuntu and Mint are more user-friendly Linux distros if you are just migrating from Microsoft Windows. For Kali Linux Network Printer install can be done with HPLIP (HP Linux Imaging and Printing). On Kali, the setup is a little different as it doesn’t come pre-installed with CUPS (Common Unix Printing System).
First we will install the required dependencies, then we will configure our HP printer using HP GUI tool. Before we begin, make sure your HP printer is turned ON and that you have a USB cable. Even though we are doing a Wireless Printer setup, this technique requires a direct USB connection (from printer to your Kali system) for a brief period of time.
What is CUPS?
CUPS is the standards-based, open source printing system developed by Apple Inc. for macOS® and other UNIX®-like operating systems. CUPS uses the Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) to support printing to local and network printers. — cups.org
To access Cups (or to see if you have it installed) point your browser to
http://127.0.0.1:631/ and you should be greeted by the Cups administration page where you can setup your printer. However, I am going to show you an easy way to setup your printer using a HPLIP.
Kali Linux Network Printer – What is HPLIP?
Since I recently purchased a Hewlett Packard (HP) Officejet 5740 printer which has wireless (wi-fi) capabilities, we will be setting up our Kali Linux Network Printer with HPLIP (HP Linux Imaging & Printing) – An HP developed project. Therefore, only follow these instructions if your device is supported.
The HPLIP project provides print, scan and fax support for 2546 printer models, including Deskjet, Officejet, Photosmart, PSC (Print Scan Copy), Business Inkjet, LaserJet, Edgeline MFP, and LaserJet MFP. — hplipopensource.com
Info: For a list of supported printers please see HPLIP Supported Device List
Kali Linux Network Printer – Install & configure HPLIP
To install our network printer, we need to make sure all of our apt repositories are up-to-date. To do this, open up Terminal and type:
Once apt is done updating, we need to install all the dependencies required for HPLIP in order to setup our Kali Linux network printer. To do this, in Terminal type:
apt-get install --force-yes -y avahi-utils cups libcups2 libcups2-dev cups-bsd cups-client libcupsimage2 libcupsimage2-dev libdbus-1-dev g++ ghostscript ghostscript-cups ghostscript-x libssl-dev libjpeg62-turbo-dev libsnmp-dev libc6 libtool libusb-1.0.0-dev make wget python-imaging python-dbus python-gobject python-dev python python-reportlab sane libsane-dev sane-utils xsane
Info: As you can see CUPS, CUPS-Client, etc. are all dependencies that are required for HPLIP.
Now, we can install HPLIP. There are multiple ways to do this, you can either use
apt or manually download and install. To see if you can install using
apt, in Terminal type the following:
apt-cache search hplip
You should get the following results:
If your results are similar to the image above, run the following commands next:
apt-get install hplip hplip-gui
After installation completes, run the following:
This will launch the following HP Device Manager – Setup GUI (Graphical User Interface) window:
Hitting Next will launch the “Wireless Setup”:
Make sure your printer is turned on and connected to your Kali Linux machines USB port. This is only temporary.
Select your printer and click Next
Select your Wifi network and click Next
Enter your Wifi Security Key and click Connect
As the previous window states, you can now unplug your USB cord from your Linux machine to your printer. Also the bottom of the window gives us a command to run in the Terminal and your printers IP address on your Local Network. Remember it, or write it down as we will need it soon.
Select your printer and click Next
Edit any info (not necessary) and click “Add Printer”
Finally, go back to your Terminal and type the command provided to us earlier. For example, I would enter:
If your Kali Linux network printer install was successful, your output should look similar to the following:
Now, if you go into your Kali Print-Settings, your network printer should be listed:
Local and Network printers listed
You can right-click your network printer and “Set it as default” just like in Microsoft Windows.
Your Kali Linux Network Printer should now be working fine. Try to print a test page and see it in action. Remember, you can adjust your printing preferences via Kali Print-Settings,
hp-setup, or via CUPS (
http://127.0.0.1:631). If you are still having issues, it may be due to different Linux or Python version. You can see the HPLIP website for manual install instructions for other Linux Distros as well.