We have something like 3000 printers. They are named something like “MF2301” and “MF2302”. The printer properties luckily show the location of the printer.
So let’s fire up system-config-printer and search for the right printer. First thing is that it takes ages for system-config-printer to start with 3000 printers. Somewhere close to 20 seconds. What’s happening? Is it requesting the status for each printer? Is the delay caused by 3000 icons (Nautilus is faster when displaying a directory with 3000 files)? Then we have the search field. Hmmm it allows only searches on the name, not by location or description. Unfortunately our users are humans and not computers, so they usually know the location where they are, but not the number of the printer. So I first have to walk to the printer, write the name down and walk back to my thin-client to select the correct printer and click “set as default”.
Now I want to print something. So I hit <ctrl><p> in openoffice.org, and it shows MF00001 as printer? That was not my default printer! Openoffice.org shows a dropdown with all printers, so I have to scroll through the 3000 printers to select the right printer again.
So far for printing for now.
Update: let me be clear, I don’t want to bash the developers of the printer settings (I’m very glad it exists!!!!) but I just want to show some of the issues that arise in large desktop deployments.