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My printer (Deskjet 940c) used to print just fine in Ubuntu, but there has been some regression in some package so that now the system (and this affects printing from ANY program) doesn't take into account the correct "printable area" and prints outside it, so I always get clipped printing.

My guess is that probably the printable area size values for a given printer are stored somewhere and for some reason those of my printer have been replaced with wrong values (unless it's some bug that incorrectly uses them)

Is there some file I can manually edit (or some setting I can manually change) to set the correct values of the printable area margin?

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Open Printing from the Dash, double-click your printer, click Job Options, and scroll down to the Text Options area. You can reset your print margins from there.

Print Margins

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I may be mistaken but this looks more like the default page margins, which (correct me if I'm wrong) are not the same as the printable area. And this seems to apply only to text, doesn't it?. For example, when you print a pdf document, there is an option (which belongs to the pdf reader, I believe, not the printer settings) to rescale it to fit the printable area, and it rescales it too big (and hence it gets clipped). This text margin default may be a good workaround for text printing, however – matteo Nov 26 '12 at 0:01

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