Rant about Canon

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Situation at hand

Printers from Canon and the accompanying (setup) software are pure crap! There is no solution for the use-case of setting up a canon-printer as WLAN-printer under Linux… with no other operating-system at hand. The printer works fine and prints nice high-resolution graphics, photos and text, if connected via USB. But that very much misses the point here!

The setup-software which comes with these printers is Windows-only… in such a way that it does not work via wine. I did not spent any time or brain-cycles to figure out why. Gosh, I just want to connect a printer to a computer… it is 2023! Native Windows games work via wine, surely a simple setup-tool cannot be messed up in such a way, that it would refuse to work correctly through wine, or can it?

WPS to the rescue?

The setup approach via WPS does not work either, as the printer simply does not find the router, despite having explicitly entered the router’s ESSID on the printer’s tiny dot-matrix-display on-screen menu (and no, I did not misspell the ESSID). If there is a way to switch the printer’s WiFi on or off it is well-hidden and not exposed at all to the user via a LED or menu-item.

Maybe a bit custom software, please?

A simple – even console-only (heaven forbid I demand a GUI-based setup-tool under Linux from such a small company like Canon) – setup-tool based on a USB-connection would be acceptable.

Verdict

Not that it is special or secret knowledge, but Canon printers under Linux are to be avoided at all costs! I know that for several years now. But in this case it is not my printer I have to setup, but helping my parents to get their recent acquisition up and running.

Personally I always stick to HP printers and that is what I keep recommending to people, who ask me. But non-technical as my parents are they asked for my advice, took it and bought some black plastic printer, that looks very similar to a HP-printer. That fact that they know/heard the name ‘Canon’ before made them probably assume it is close enough.

Final thoughts

In the end it is of course not Canon’s fault, but that of my parents… or even me (I hope you get the irony here). If you are a suit or bean-counter from Canon, be sure to avoid me in public or I will do unspeakable things to you. Note to all PC snowflakes out there reading this: gee, grow up… the last sentence is not meant totally serious… only a bit 😉