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My computer previously ran Ubuntu 10.4. After upgrading to 13.4, my Epson scanner no longer can be found by the system. Following documentation, I find the following:

$ sane-find-scanner

  # sane-find-scanner will now attempt to detect your scanner. If the 
  # result is different from what you expected, first make sure your
  # scanner is powered up and properly connected to your computer.

  # No SCSI scanners found. If you expected something different, make sure that
  # you have loaded a kernel SCSI driver for your SCSI adapter.

could not open USB device 0x046d/0x082b at 001:007: Access denied (insufficient permissions)
...
  # No USB scanners found. If you expected something different, make sure that
  # you have loaded a kernel driver for your USB host controller and have setup
  # the USB system correctly. See man sane-usb for details.
...

If I instead run sudo sane-find-scanner, I get

$ sudo sane-find-scanner

  # sane-find-scanner will now attempt to detect your scanner. If the
  # result is different from what you expected, first make sure your
  # scanner is powered up and properly connected to your computer.

  # No SCSI scanners found. If you expected something different, make sure that
  # you have loaded a kernel SCSI driver for your SCSI adapter.

found USB scanner (vendor=0x04b8 [EPSON], product=0x0131 [EPSON Scanner]) at libusb:001:009
could not fetch string descriptor: Pipe error
could not fetch string descriptor: Pipe error
  # Your USB scanner was (probably) detected. It may or may not be supported by
  # SANE. Try scanimage -L and read the backend's manpage.

So what do I do? scanimage -L does nothing for me and I don't know what the "backend's manpage" might be. It's seems likely that this is a permissions issue since the scanner can be found as root, but I don't know how to solve it. Can someone help?

Update: I had also tried simple-scan and xsane. Neither of them could find the scanner. That was what led me to try sane-find-scanner.

  • Have you tried using another program? Perhaps Simple Scan or gscan2pdf just to see if you can get the scanner working at all? For what it's worth, sane-find-scanner doesn't find my networked scanner, but xsane does. – Marc Oct 23 '13 at 4:25
  • see update above. Yes, I had tried simple-scan and xsane – stevecoh1 Oct 23 '13 at 11:06
  • Try this: help.ubuntu.com/community/…` – Marc Oct 23 '13 at 16:12
  • Thanks: Hmm, yes, wow, my scanner, the Epson Perfection V-300 Photo is NOT supported. So how did it work with Ubuntu 10.04? Oh wait, it's all coming back to me: "Perfection V300 Photo USB 0x04b8/0x0131 Unsupported supported by the epkowa backend plus non-free interpreter". I remember now, I had to download some drivers from Epson. Then everything worked without me having to change anything else, mess with udev, etc. – stevecoh1 Nov 3 '13 at 17:07
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My scanner(Epson Perfection V-300 Photo is NOT supported). So how did it ever work with Ubuntu 10.04? "Perfection V300 Photo USB 0x04b8/0x0131 Unsupported supported by the epkowa backend plus non-free interpreter". Thanks to Marc for giving me a place to look, the first step there got me this information, which brought back the memories of what I had to do to get this to work with Ubuntu 10.04. I downloaded the drivers and everything just worked.

I would say that the error message in sane-find-scanner is less helpful than it easily might be.

Instead of just

  # Your USB scanner was (probably) detected. It may or may not be supported by
  # SANE. Try scanimage -L and read the backend's manpage.

they could have easily included a link to http://www.sane-project.org/sane-mfgs.html and saved me hours of wasted time investigating.

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