Whenever I try to print to an HP printer, I get a "Filter Failed" notice near the printer. "sudo service cups status" shows the following error message:

error: Failed to create /var/spool/cups/tmp/.hplip

How can I fix this?


$ sudo namei -l /var/spool/cups/tmp/.hplip


f: /var/spool/cups/tmp/.hplip
drwxr-xr-x root root /
drwxr-xr-x root root var
drwxr-xr-x root root spool
drwx--x--- root lp   cups
drwxrwx--T root lp   tmp
drwxr-xr-x lp   lp   .hplip
  • Try the command: sudo touch /var/spool/cups/tmp/.hplip, and then run sudo service cups status – kyodake Jun 17 '18 at 15:41
  • I see the same message in sudo service cups status – Erel Segal-Halevi Jun 17 '18 at 16:58
  • Please edit your question to include the output of namei -l /var/spool/cups/tmp/.hplip – steeldriver Jun 17 '18 at 19:56
  • @steeldriver done – Erel Segal-Halevi Jun 18 '18 at 8:36
  • There seem to be a number of related bug reports - but I can't tell from them what the problem (or solution) is exactly - sorry. See for example HPLIP: Wrong permissions on /var/spool/cups – steeldriver Jun 18 '18 at 15:23

This is the solution that worked for me:

  1. Reinstall hplip:
sudo apt remove hplip
sudo apt install hplip
  1. Reinstall the printer from the command line (not from the Printers GUI):
hp-setup -i
n (=network printer)
d (=download driver)
  1. Remove the old printer from the Printers GUI.
  • Could you elaborate on the second step? – alonso s Dec 7 '18 at 6:37
  • I already elaborated as much as I could.. – Erel Segal-Halevi Dec 12 '18 at 6:45

I know I am kind of late, but maybe it helps someone. Running:

sudo apt install printer-driver-escpr

solved the issue (got the same error message out of nowhere) for my Epson XP-415, under Ubuntu 20.04.

After installation the printer was added automatically (its in the same network) and I was able to print from PDF without any problems.

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