Linux Command Library


check out the printcap database

checkpc [ -aflprsV ] [ -Aage[DHMS] ] [ -Ddebugflags ] [ -Pprinter ] [ -t size[kM] ]

Checkpc is used to check for the existence and correct permissions of entries in the printcap database. It is useful when installing a new printcap database and cleaning up existing printer spoolers.

Do not create accounting files (:af).
The fix flag will cause the checkpc program create and fix various files and permissions. It does this in a simple minded manner, and the program may have to be run several times until all permissions are correct. It also reports in extremely verbose details its actions.
Do not create log files (:lf).
Print verbose printcap information. Useful if interested in the printcap values.
remove junk or job files older than the age set by -A. You must set the age to a non-zero value otherwise no files are removed.
Do not create filter status files (:ps).
-A Age[DHMS]
Report junk or job files older than age. The age time can have a suffix days (D) hours (H), minutes (M), or seconds (S); default is days.
-D debugflags
Run the program with debugging flags. See the LPRng HOWTO for details of the flags actions.
Verbose mode.
-P printer
Process only the specified print queue.
-t size[kM]
Truncate log files (:lf) to the specified size in Kbytes or Mbytes (default is Mbytes).
-T serial-line
set process name and start feature test

If the -f(fix) option is specified and you do not run this as root, it will complain, but attempt to carry out the operations. This will lead to a large number of failures reports if the ownership and/or permissions are incorrect.

The files used by LPRng are set by values in the printer configuration file and by configuration options. The following are a commonly used set of default values.

 /etc/lprng/lpd.conf LPRng configuration file ${HOME}/.printcap user printer description file /etc/printcap printer description file /etc/lprng/lpd.perms permissions /var/run/lprng/lpd lock file for queue control /var/spool/lpd spool directories /var/spool/lpd/QUEUE/control queue control /var/spool/lpd/QUEUE/log trace or debug log file /var/spool/lpd/QUEUE/acct accounting file /var/spool/lpd/QUEUE/status status file 

lpd.conf(5), lpc(8), lpd(8), lpr(1), lpq(1), lprm(1), printcap(5), lpd.perms(5), pr(1), lprng_certs(1), lprng_index_certs(1).

Patrick Powell <>.

Most of the diagnostics are self explanatory. If you are puzzled over the exact cause of failure, set the debugging level on (-D5) and run again.

The debugging information will help you to pinpoint the exact cause of failure.

LPRng is a enhanced printer spooler system with functionality similar to the Berkeley LPR software. The LPRng developer mailing list is; subscribe by visiting or sending mail to with the word subscribe in the body. The software is available via

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