Apple acquires CUPS modular printing software

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
http://www.cups.org/articles.php?L475



Quote:

In February of 2007, Apple Inc. acquired ownership the CUPS source code and hired me (Michael R Sweet), the creator of CUPS.



CUPS will still be released under the existing GPL2/LGPL2 licensing terms, and I will continue to develop and support CUPS at Apple.



Answers to questions about the change of ownership can be found on the frequently asked questions page.






Congrats Michael. You're hard work has paid off. Glad to see Apple serious about printing in OS X.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    feynmanfeynman Posts: 1,087member
    Huge. This will be in Leopard no doubt. How come it took us five months to hear about it?
  • Reply 2 of 20
    i hope this will lead to better printing drivers for Mac. personally i'd love to see a unified printing utility that slaves oem drivers and takes care of all the 'workarounds' in the background. this would certainly help all Mac users who are using their workstations for graphics and art output to dedicated desktop and wide format printers (Epson, HP, Canon etc)
  • Reply 3 of 20
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,223moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post


    Glad to see Apple serious about printing in OS X.



    And also supporting open source developers. I like to hear news like this, thanks for posting.
  • Reply 4 of 20
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Feynman View Post


    Huge. This will be in Leopard no doubt. How come it took us five months to hear about it?



    ?!?!



    What will be in Leopard?



    Dave
  • Reply 5 of 20
    AppleInsiderAppleInsider Posts: 42,359administrator
    Apple Inc., in an apparent bid to bolster the printing services of its Mac OS X operating system, has acquired both the source code and author of the unix-based CUPS modular printing solution.



    Financial terms of the deal, which was completed back in February and noted by MacRumors on Thursday, were not made public.



    In a posting to the official CUPS website earlier this week, the software's original author Michael Sweet said he was hired by Apple as part of the deal, but will continue to develop and release the software under its existing GPL2/LGPL2 license.



    CUPS, which stands for Common Unix Printing System, is a modular printing system for Unix-like operating systems that allows a computer to act as a powerful print server.



    Computers running CUPS act as host machines that can accept print jobs from client computers, process them, and send them to the appropriate printer. The software is comprised of a print spooler and scheduler, a filter system that converts the print data to a format that the printer will understand, and a backend system that sends this data to the print device.



    Apple, which had started to develop its own printing system from scratch about six years ago, shelved plans for the proprietary software in 2002 and adopted CUPS outright. The Cupertino-based company has since used CUPS as the printing system of choice for its Mac OS X operating system, beginning with Mac OS X 10.2 Jaguar.



    In making his deal with Apple public this week, Sweet also issued a frequently asked questions page with details regarding the change of ownership of the printing software.
  • Reply 6 of 20
    benroethigbenroethig Posts: 2,782member
    CUPS has been in OSX since 2002. The only difference I've heard we'll see is better driver support.
  • Reply 7 of 20
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    This just in from the day late and dollar short society...



    http://forums.appleinsider.com/showthread.php?t=76629



    Dave
  • Reply 8 of 20
    hohlecowhohlecow Posts: 50member
    why will this change anything?



    i've used a samsung, canon, epson, and hp printer with jaguar, panther, and tiger (well, not all those printers with all version, but some combination).



    the only thing this may change is whether or not CUPS goes GPL3.
  • Reply 9 of 20
    pbpb Posts: 4,233member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Feynman View Post


    Huge. This will be in Leopard no doubt.



    CUPS makes part of OS X since the days of Jaguar. The difference now is that Apple controls the source code.
  • Reply 10 of 20
    bsenkabsenka Posts: 799member
    Michael Sweet is a software designer? Neat, I was wondering what happened after Stryper broke up.
  • Reply 11 of 20
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Am I the only one who hates he printing setup in OS X?
  • Reply 12 of 20
    the printing set up is incomplete and complicated and relies on instruction for workarounds. fortunately i have compiled various pieces of info from different sources on the internet to help make the printing process easier. it would be nice to find out that Apple was going to be providing a better printing environment in Leopard. i can't see them buying the CUPS system and not intending to develop it in some way.
  • Reply 13 of 20
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Am I the only one who hates he printing setup in OS X?



    CUPS is the back end, and seems to be pretty good, the OS X front end might use some help in terms of an efficient and easy to navigate UI.
  • Reply 14 of 20
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PB View Post


    CUPS makes part of OS X since the days of Jaguar. The difference now is that Apple controls the source code.



    If someone wants to see evidence and possibly more flexible access to CUPS, click here in OS X:



    http://localhost:631/
  • Reply 15 of 20
    meelashmeelash Posts: 1,045member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    If someone wants to see evidence and possibly more flexible access to CUPS, click here in OS X:



    http://localhost:631/



    Some of the tabs require a password to access. Is that my local admin password? CUPS is something that's running on my machine, right?
  • Reply 16 of 20
    pbpb Posts: 4,233member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    If someone wants to see evidence and possibly more flexible access to CUPS, click here in OS X:



    http://localhost:631/



    Oh, I have been there before. But it is so long (years now) that I had completely forgot about that. Thanks for the reminder.
  • Reply 17 of 20
    doh123doh123 Posts: 323member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    If someone wants to see evidence and possibly more flexible access to CUPS, click here in OS X:



    http://localhost:631/



    I'm guessing I have to open port 631 on my firewall, since that does nothing?
  • Reply 18 of 20
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by doh123 View Post


    I'm guessing I have to open port 631 on my firewall, since that does nothing?



    I don't have printer sharing open. Do you have a printer set up?
  • Reply 19 of 20
    cups is open source... what exactly did apple buy? The code cannot be closed source, nor can it be exclusive to apple. I guess apple is just financially supporting an open source project, which is and will be used by tons of different Operating systems.
  • Reply 20 of 20
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bananasareformonkeys View Post


    cups is open source... what exactly did apple buy? The code cannot be closed source, nor can it be exclusive to apple. I guess apple is just financially supporting an open source project, which is and will be used by tons of different Operating systems.



    That's not the whole truth though. You can negotiate alternative rights to the software with the people that own it, provided the owners go along with it. With those rights, you can make your own private fork. Apple can't revoke the rights to what's already out there though, but they can keep their own changes private under this arrangement if they chose to. The owner can even stop distributing or offering the software under GPL & LGPL, but that wouldn't matter because once it's licensed GPL, then anyone is free to redistribute it the GPL'd work as they please.
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