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Simple print function for Sublime Text 2 and 3

There are lots of requests for printing in the Sublime Text discussion forum. Personally, I very rarely need printing, but I can appreciate that some do.

So here's a simple solution to the problem. Nothing more than sending the data to an external program that does the printing.

The program used, and various options are selected in the settings file. As default, I use enscript since that is available in a standard install for both Linux, Mac and possiby Windows. You could use a2ps or even lpr instead, with suitable options.

Note: The code in actually depends on enscript a bit at the moment. I may clean that up in case there are requests for it.


Add whatever options you need in the settings file. Note that options without a value (i.e. --option) need to be specified with an empty string as value, due to the JSON dictionary format.

The given print command will be searched for inside path /usr/bin and /usr/local/bin. An absolute path should be given if it resides in another directory.

Supported print options

  • Print the entire file of the active view.
  • Print the selected text of the active view. Multiple selections are supported.
  • Print clipboard content.

Select a printer

A list of all available printers will be created in the user specific SublimePrint.sublime-settings file at the first time something is printed. The available printers have key format printer_(a number). The selected printer is defined under key used_printer. The value of used_printer defaults to the default printer.

To re-create the list of available printers, delete key used_printer and all occurrences of printer_(a number) from the user specific SublimePrint.sublime-settings and print some short text.

If you instead always want to print on the default printer, you can set cache_printer_names to false in the user configuration file. Doing that will cause the printer list to always be generated.

You may override the used_printer value at print time by setting the option prompt_printer to be true in your user settings file. When this option is true, you will be prompted to choose which printer to print to on each new print job.

Install enscript

Check whether enscript is installed already:

$ which enscript

If SublimePrint does not print, edit the user settings and change the command value to the absolute path shown by the which command. In most cases, this is not needed.


Given CUPS is already installed and you can successful print from other programs but enscript can not be found:

[Debian]$ sudo apt-get install enscript

[RedHat]$ sudo yum install enscript


[Homebrew]$ brew install enscript


Enscript is available for Windows from several providers, for instance this one. I have not verified that this works, though. If someone wants to try, please do so.

Known limitations

  • Only saved documents can be printed with 'Print Entire File'. The workaround for unsaved or modified files is to select all lines and use 'Print Selection'.
  • No preview or print dialog.
  • Printer selection via properties file only.

External commands

  • The documentation for enscript is, for instance, here
  • Other processors you'll have to find yourself.


10 Apr 2012 : First version. Only supports 'Print Entire File'.

1 Oct 2012 : Many additions by Kai Ellinger, including 'Print Selection', 'Print Clipboard', and printer setup.

4 Jan 2013 : Total rewrite of code to elliminate duplication and to simplify things. Submitted to Package Control.

29 Jun 2013 : Some tweaks to make the code compatible with Python 3, and thus with Sublime Text 3.

30 Jun 2013 : Don't call sys.exit(), since that makes Sublime Text hang.

15 Jul 2013 : Added cache_printer_names setting for those who always want to use the default printer.

21 Sep 2013 : Added prompt_printer setting for those who wish to choose the printer on every use.


Simple print function for Sublime Text. Handles printing current file, selection, or clipboard.



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