How to Allow Non-Admin Users to Add Printers in Leopard

by Dean Mattson

With Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard), Apple added a new feature: non-admin users are no longer able to add printers without an administrator password. This has been true of Windows for quite awhile and I’m sure it’s much needed in some environments, but it would result in a lot of trouble for me. A lot of teachers at my school have their own printers at their homes and they’d like to be able to print to them with their laptops. I would like an easy way to let them do that.

So Friday I spent a lot of time searching on the internet for a way to do exactly that. It wasn’t easy. I found a lot of methods that didn’t work and a lot more that didn’t give me enough information with which I could figure out how to do it. By splicing together information from two sources, I figured out how to make it work. Here’s how to do it.

1. First you need to be logged in as an administrative user. Open Firefox and go tohttp://localhost:631/admin, click on “Edit Configuration File”.

2. You’re going to look for these two parts towards the bottom:

#  <Limit CUPS-Add-Modify-Printer CUPS-Delete-Printer CUPS-Add-Modify-Class CUPS-Delete-Class CUPS-Set-Default>
#    AuthType Default
#    Require user @SYSTEM
#    Order deny,allow
#  </Limit>
#  <Limit Pause-Printer Resume-Printer Enable-Printer Disable-Printer
#  Pause-Printer-After-Current-Job Hold-New-Jobs Release-Held-New-Jobs
#  Deactivate-Printer Activate-Printer Restart-Printer Shutdown-Printer
#  Startup-Printer Promote-Job Schedule-Job-After CUPS-Accept-Jobs CUPS-Reject-Jobs>
#    AuthType Default
#    Require user @AUTHKEY(system.print.admin) @admin @lpadmin
#    Order deny,allow
#  </Limit>

3. Select them and press the delete key. Click “Save Changes.”

4. Restart your computer.

From now on, any user will be able to add any printer they want.