lp (Unix)

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The lp command is used to assign jobs to printer queues on UNIX, some Unix-like OSes like Linux, and the Common Unix Printing System utilized by Linux and Mac OS X.[1]

While similar in name and function, it is a different program from Plan 9's lp, fellow UNIX-like BSD's lpr, or MS-DOS's LPT. The LPRng project provides lp as a wrapper to the lpr command.

The first appearance of lp as a print (command) was as the System V printing system on UNIX System V. Like similarly-named commands on ITS, DEC, CP/M, and 86-DOS, it was originally an acronym for terms like line print(er) and local print(er). However, the commands stopped being specific to line- or local- devices in the 1980s, and today are used with any printer compatible with the operating system itself.


  1. ^ "Linux Manpages: lp". Easy Software Products. 2004. Retrieved 11 November 2013.