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9.10. Configuring CUPS

CUPS, an open source project initiated and headed by Easy Software Products, was adopted by Apple as Mac OS X's internal printing system starting with OS Version 10.2.0.

For decades, the majority of Unix systems (including earlier versions of Mac OS X) have used a patchwork of different vendors' printing systems, usually a mix of Berkeley Unix's LPD/LPR and System V's LP, which trace their roots back to the 1970s. As its name suggests, CUPS provides a printing system intended to work on any Unix-based system. It uses more recent technologies, particularly the Internet Printing Protocol (IPP), which layers printing-specific commands onto HTTP.[7] This allows, among other things, a CUPS-based print server to use HTTP-style authentication and access control, and to accept web client connections (as covered in Section 9.8.1).

[7] For another Mac OS X-friendly technology that builds on HTTP, read about WebDAV in Chapter 7.


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