How to get that printer working properly.

At work we have a Dell 2150cdn color laser printer and I'm using Ubuntu so I needed to get this thing running. Dell provides some Linux binaries, unfortunately packaged in the RPM format. So they're useless on Ubuntu. To get the printer working, follow these steps:

  • Download the driver ZIP file from the Dell site.
  • Unpack the ZIP, you'll find several RPM files inside
  • Find the file Linux/Dell-2150-Color-Printer-1.0-1.i686.rpm, get rid of the other ones. We only need this one.
  • Install some necessary packages:

    sudo apt-get install lib32z1 lib32ncurses5 lib32bz2-1.0 rpm2cpio libcups2:i386 libcupsimage2:i386 libc6:i386 libncurses5:i386 libstdc++6:i386 libstdc++6:i386
    
  • Now unpack the RPM package:

    rpm2cpio Dell-2150-Color-Printer-1.0-1.i686.rpm | cpio --extract --make-directories
    
  • Make sure the files have the right permissions:

    sudo chown -R root:root usr
    
  • Copy them to the right location

    sudo cp -r usr /
    
  • Restart cups, the printing service:

    sudo service cups restart
    
  • Now you can use the normal Ubuntu UI (System Settings -> Printers) to find the printer in your network and add it.