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I want to set up a Raspberry Pi as a network endpoint for the USB-only Samsung SCX-4521F multifunction printer/scanner.

To achieve that, I believe I'd need to install the Samsung Unified Linux Driver ("SULD"), which is provided by a Debian "armel" repository. The site says this (my emphasis):

The drivers are binary-only (no source code provided), and are only available for the Intel/AMD 32- and 64-bit platforms with limited ARM support (Android, Raspberry Pi, etc. only if "soft-float").

So I need (and would prefer anyway) some Debian distribution, but I'm not entirely clear on how well "armel" and "armhf" things can coexist (if at all), so I don't know whether this means that I need to explicitly install an "armel" flavour of Debian (or just some "armel" set of essential packages).

Raspbian is the only obvious general-purpose Debian-based distribution for Raspberry Pi referenced on the Raspberry Pi Downloads page, but I'm led to believe that it's explicitly an "armhf" distribution at this point in time.

  • Do I need an "armel" distribution of Debian in order to use an "armel" driver?
  • If so, what is an appropriate procedure for setting up a Raspberry Pi with such a distribution?

(Although this isn't the emphasis of my question, I'd also happily be challenged on my assumption about having to install the SULD if that's actually incorrect.)

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The last Debian distribution tailored for the Pi was available from ftp://ftp.mirrorservice.org/sites/downloads.raspberrypi.org/images/debian/7/2013-05-29-wheezy-armel/

I used that distribution as a base but keep it in line with Debian jessie by apt-get'ing from the appropriate Debian (not Raspbian) archives.

As far as I know you shouldn't try to mix soft-float and hard-float packages.

Have you tried your printer under ordinary Linux? It may work but just with limited capabilities.

  • Thanks for the link—installing soft-float drivers into a soft-float distribution definitely seems to make more sense. The printer works as expected under both Ubuntu and Linux Mint without any special drivers, but I'd prefer to hook the printer to something that can stay on without guzzling unnecessary power and I'd like to be able to use the scanner, so connecting it to a Raspberry Pi still seems to be the sanest option at this time. – Alex Peters Jan 7 '15 at 11:28

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