Colin's Journal

Colin's Journal: A place for thoughts about politics, software, and daily life.

August 29th, 2004

Fedora hardware support

This post is about computers, so if that bores you click on the pretty picture instead of reading on!

Halifax harbour.When adding new hardware to a machine running Linux it will either work straight away, or it will be a challenge to your patience. For example if you add a new Ethernet card to your machine there’s a very good chance that on rebooting it will be found and will work with no extra software being required.

When hardware isn’t fully supported however things become complex and trying. Take for example the Epson Perfection 2480 scanner that we purchased yesterday. I had already researched Linux support, and found that neither the official Epson software for Linux (iScan), nor SANE support it. Just this week, however, on the development mailing list for SANE there was a thread about this scanner, and a couple of patches that enabled support for it.

To get the Epson Perfection 2480 scanner working I had to:

  1. Download the latest development source code for SANE from CVS.
  2. Apply the patches described in these two posts.
  3. Build the modified source, and install.
  4. Find the scanner firmware (Esfw41.bin) from the Epson CD. To do this I had to install cabextract, and then unarchive the file ESCAN/ from the CD.
  5. Edit the /usr/local/etc/sane.d/snapscan.conf file to set the location of the firmware file.
  6. Add the line “usb 0x04b8 0x0121” to the /usr/local/etc/sane.d/snapscan.conf file.
  7. Install the SANE hotplug scripts from the tools directory.
  8. Create a new group called “scanner”, and add myself to this group.
  9. Download the latest XSANE front-end, build from source and install.
  10. Logout and log back in again so that adding myself to the scanner group would take effect.

After all this the scanner now works.

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