A few things I’ll ask for:
- your operating system, including version - Ubuntu something, or you'd be posting somewhere else,
- your printer model,
- how your printer is configured,
I’m betting, since you’re using an Airport Extreme, that you’ve configured the printer as an HP JetDirect. You’re getting prints, so you’ve got the IP address right, and the port number as well.
- where you got the printer driver – did your operating system already know your printer, or did you have to go through some machinations to get it recognized?
Now for the disclaimer: In answer to your question, “No.” I’ve never seen or heard of this problem before. My response is based on intuition, on my experience with a similar problem - if you're not too particular about what "similar" means - and on how I’d start to troubleshoot this issue.
My opening theory is this:
- I believe that the printer driver in your laptop expects to see a message from the printer that indicates that the job was completed. I also believe that the Airport isn’t passing that message back to the computer, or at least it’s not doing so correctly. As long as your session is active, the driver waits patiently for a response. When you reboot, the driver looks for unfinished print jobs, and, finding one on which it never saw confirmation, sends it to the queue again.
- Note that Apple’s Airport/printer troubleshooting page says that the Airport is “ … not for printer utilities or other special features that may require a direct proprietary connection.” (http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1253 )
Knowing how the printer performed when it was directly connected to the laptop, and how the printer performed over the Airport from some other operating system – surely if you forked out the long green for an Airport, there’s a Mac around to test with – would go a long way toward refining the theory. Just print and reboot, and see if you can duplicate the problem with a local interface or a different operating system. If you haven’t already connected the printer directly to the laptop, I’d suggest that you create a second incarnation of the printer to perform that test, rather than trying it with the existing one – you’ll want different settings without the Airport.
Post your results, and we’ll see what to do next.