User Friendly Printer Management | openSUSE YaST

At some point in my life with openSUSE, some default policy concerning printers changed that required me to enter the root credentials to resume a printer, should it be paused for whatever reason. I did not like this default and I was contacted about this annoyance, so, I set out to fix this and make life on the openSUSE desktop a generally better experience.

The Problem

When I have had a printer fail to start or get hung up for whatever reason, a manual restart of the printer would require authentication. This is fine for a user that is very Linux savoy but for a regular home user would likely be vapor locked when presented with this. I cold also argue it’s probably not a good idea for a typical user to need these credentials for this kind of trouble shooting.

The solutions is actually quite easy, if you know where to go and this is my attempt to hopefully provide some clarity for other users of openSUSE.

YaST Printer Module

The place to start is the YaST Control Center. Within the Hardware section, select the Printer module.

When the YaST Printer Module loads, in the left pane, select the Policies menu item and below the “Specify the operation policy” select “allowallforanybody” and select, the radio button beside “Apply this operation policy to all local printer configurations.

Select “OK” and then you will now be able to control your printer from the printer desktop applet without any additional authentication.

Final Thoughts

It’s good to know how your system works. This is a little thing that making this adjustment makes for a better desktop experience. This tweak obviously exists because in an enterprise environment, you may not want users to have control over the printer behaviors of a server. Now that I know how YaST manages printers, I can make this adjustment for me and any other “user level” devices. I do think that it would make for a better openSUSE default that when “desktop” is selected, this option is also automatically selected as well. I do admit that I may not see the bigger picture here and this is just an opinion.

openSUSE Linux

8 thoughts on “User Friendly Printer Management | openSUSE YaST

  1. If I remebmer correctly the printer requiring authentication was one of the issues because of which Linus Torvalds abandoned the use of SUSE about 10 years ago. I am glad that somebody is finally solving it 🙂

  2. Thanks for this info. I think you’re right, if openSUSE wants to appeal to regular users with its desktop version the default should be changed. It’s a small thing but I’ve had long phone calls with my parents, running openSUSE in another country, whose printer has halted and I’ve had to get them to enter the root password that they otherwise have no need for.

    1. It is an easy fix for a better year experience. I think, even a corporate machine would be better off with that as default too.

  3. Funny, I was searching for something like this a month ago and asked on the openSUSE-support matrix channel with no success and ended up editing /etc/polkit-default-privs.local, overwriting the cups rules with auth_self_keep_session.
    Does the change in yet have the same effect?

    1. I am not sure if it does or not. Your solution is far more complex than mine. My only advise is to experiment and find out.

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