Move a print job from one queue to another in Linux

Today, I was looking at my printer queue and realised that Claire had tried to print something from the internet to my work printer. This meant that unless I went to the office – it would not print. A problem.

Because Claire had decided to use my laptop rather than one of the desktops, I was set up for Linux and believed that I could solve this problem someone in a very tekky way.

A quick squint at the internet found Linux Commando’s How to move print jobs from one printer queue to another.


So, to break it down – here’s what you do. Let’s say that you’ve printed to printer B, but you meant to print to printer A, this is what we do.

Step 1

Find the print job number in the queue. The easiest way is at the command prompt

<code>lpq -P printerB</code>

This will show a list of jobs:

printerB is ready and printing
Rank    Owner   Job     File(s)                         Total Size
active  john    180     12 Steps to a Success with Your 182272 bytes

Now we can see that your print job is 180. Great.

Step 2

So I want to move that job to printerA:

<code>sudo lpmove printerB-180 printerA</code>

That’s it. Now if you check the queue for printer A:

<code>lpq -P printerA</code>

You will see the print job printing out. Hurrah!