Printing via Nextcloud

Not quite support, but a request for advice…

With the upcoming demise of google cloud print, it’s time for me to work out a replacement for it.

I have a printer happily connected to my home network and want other people to be able to print from it, even though they may not be in the same building, nevermind network. The Nextcloud server is not located in the same location but I have full control over it.

I’ve come up with a few different options for how I could do this:

  1. Use the Nextcloud Printer app, run cups on the nextcloud server and negotiate it connecting into my local network.
    • Plus: Simple, everything’s already written.
    • Minus: Don’t seem to be able to limit who on my nextcloud server has access to the printer.
    • Minus: Doesn’t support all formats, e.g. openoffice xml?
    • Minus: Doesn’t look actively maintained/developed?
  2. Create a group folder and user for the printer. Write my own script that looks for new files in the folder (via webdav?) downloads, prints and then removes them from the folder.
  3. Create a user for the printer. Write my own script that looks for new files shared with the user, downloads, prints then unshares from itself.

2 & 3 are basically the same idea, the difference is just in how users interact with it. I’m leaning towards 3 over the two as although privacy isn’t too big of an issue, it maintains it a little better.

Ideally, I should improve my nextcloud/php development ability and improve/contribute to the printer app… but I suspect I’d find that much more difficult than a quick script to implement 3 or 4.

I was also wondering whether there was a clever way I could add Flows to the mix, but I didn’t see anything obvious out of the box there.

Has anyone else implemented a “home” printing solution for their nextcloud users?

Preferred solution would be something within the printer app. You could limit the printer app to a certain group and put there only users that are supposed to print. Regarding the formats, I don’t know what is supported but for your script that problem would apply as well?

Hello, if you would like to improve the printer app, any help is appreciated! Currently the app is very basic and can only handle filetypes that CUPS supports.