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Debian Printing

I've been installing Debian for a month now and at the point
where I want to print.  I have the Debian shrink wrap distribution
put out by VA Linux, O'Reilly, and SGI.  It includes a book published
by O'Reilly.  There is nothing in the book about installing printers.
 I've read the 50 page HOWTO on printing and read the mailing
list archives.  I have read about lpr, lpd, magicfilter, apsfilter,
printcap, and several other details but have found nothing on
how to print.  What do I do first?  Do I use modconf to tell
whatever that there is a parallel port?  Do I edit the printcap
file?  If so, what do I say in it for my HP LaserJet 4P?  Do
I type in "magicfilterconfig" and answer questions?  So far I
have the command line only.  I'm reluctant to try the install
of X windows as it sounds very complicated with several choices.
 If I install X windows first, is there a GUI print configure
program?  Eventually I want to install the HP LaserJet as a network
printer but for now a printer directly attached to the Linus
parallel port is OK. 

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