[kde-linux] Why does webkam require printer?

Duncan 1i5t5.duncan at cox.net
Wed Jan 13 22:38:04 UTC 2010

Thomas Taylor posted on Wed, 13 Jan 2010 13:18:24 -0800 as excerpted:

> I've been trying to get the builtin webcam in my Dell studio 1745 to
> work without success.  After digging around through various logs and web
> searches, it seems that KDEs' webkam requires a printer to be set up in
> cups.  Why?
> I don't have a printer connected to my laptop and currently no "home"
> network. My wife and I take turns switching cables to the internet
> (wireless will come soon I hope).

Your sig says openSuSE 11.2, x86_64, KDE 4.3.1.  I was wondering, until I 
got to the sig.

I don't have a kam on my main machine, and I'm just setting up my netbook 
and haven't done anything but ensure I have the correct kernel options 
enabled for the kam yet -- no userspace at all for it.  So this is a bit 
general...  FWIW, I run Gentoo here, so compile all my apps, with custom 
support options (Gentoo calls them USE flags) for each one.  I also don't 
have a printer ATM, so this will concern me when I do get around to 
working with the kam on my netbook.

What's likely happening is that there's optional printer support in 
kamera (kde's app for webkams, IIRC).  SuSE, being a binary distribution, 
has the choice of enabling it or not, at build-time.  It enables it so 
those that have printers can use them to print their photos.  Thus the 
check for printers.

However, just because it's checking for a printer because that's what the 
build-time options were does not mean it shouldn't work without them.  In 
fact, I can't see that being a very practical requirement, particularly 
with netbooks, etc, where folks may well want to use their cams with the 
machine untethered, even if there /is/ a printer hooked up at home.  So I 
doubt very strongly that it /requires/ the printer, it just simply checks 
for it as it's starting.  I think the printer thing is just a red herring 
(as they say).

What I suspect instead is some other issue.  I was going to ask if you 
had the drivers for yours installed, but obviously yes, as you can run it 
with gnome's cheese.  But, /something's/ not right.

What about trying to start kamera from a konsole window?  That should 
give you some information.  But note that kde apps are notorious for 
spitting out all sorts of what appear to be errors even when they're 
working correctly (they're for the developers, not users), so you may 
need to post the output and have someone familiar with the program parse 
it for you or at least compare it to their working version, thus 
eliminating the "noise".  As I said above, I don't actually have mine 
working yet, or kamera installed, so that's unlikely to be me, tho I'll 
reply (as I did here) if there's anything I can see that I think 
/might/ help.

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

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