Configure scanner

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Scanning is done with the xsane program, which automatically detects the scanner and uses the correct drivers. Not all scanners will work with linux. For a list of scanners and their compatibility with linux, see the Sane Project list of supported devices.


Go to Applications> Graphics>XSane Image scanning program.

If your scanner is not found by xsane, you can add the package libsane-extras which will add some unofficial sane backends. Even with that, some scanners will not work.

sudo apt-get install libsane-extras

FreekBox 3


Configuring a USB scanner is a matter of installing the sane scanner drivers and a scanning program.

The following list will work:

  • xsane
  • libsane
  • libsane-extras
  • sane
  • sane-utils

to install them:

  • open a terminal
  • become root
  • type:
    • apt-get update
    • apt-get install xsane libsane libsane-extras sane sane-utils

remember to put yourself in the scanner group (edit /etc/group as root)

to start using the scanner

  • connect the power to the scanner
  • connect the USB cord to the scanner and the CPU
  • start the xsane program (KDE menu)


  • Make sure the scanner is supported by sane
  • Make sure the lock is disengaged (not all scanners have a lock, but the best ones do)
  • Let the scanner warm up and try it again
  • Unplug the scanner's power and plug it back in and try again
  • Check to see if the power supply is good (and the right voltage/amperage)
    • It is generally a good idea to have some "known good" power supplies on hand for initial testing.