Windows Driver Mgmt Tool...

Adding and removing printers, especially in bulk, can be a real pain. In these instances I leverage some VBScripts that is included with Windows. Server 2008/Win 7/Vista/8/10 Prnmngr.vbs (%windir%\System32\Printing_Admin_Scripts\en-US)http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc725868(WS.10).aspxWindows XP Prnmngr.vbs (%windir%\System32)http://www.microsoft.com/resources/documentation/windows/xp/all/proddocs/en-us/prnmngr.mspxThe other optio...

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Windows Driver Tool...

It seems more and more that customers have issues with drivers.  Often it's a case that there is an old driver on the system and the new driver isn't overwriting properly.  It's also nice to simply remove old, unwanted drivers that are no longer in use. In these instances I leverage some VBScripts that is included with Windows. Server 2008/Win 7/Vista/8/10  Prndrvr.vbs (%windir%\System32\Printing_Admin_Scripts\en-US)http://technet.microsoft.co...

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Print Capture (LPD/9100)...

VCLPDCAP.ZIP - vcLPDcap allows for the easy capture of print output via LPD or RAW 9100. Once it is executed on a workstation a print queue can be redirect to the workstation's IP and output captured.Update: Windows 10...yup, still works...

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Print Download Tool...

PRINTDOWNLOADTOOL.ZIP - Print Download Tool is a simple application that allows for files to be easily sent to printers via UNC, Local Windows Printer, or IP (9100/LPR).Update: Windows 10...yup, still works...

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The call is coming from inside...

Many years ago, when I worked for Lexmark, I presented to Corrections Services IT.  These are the geeks who control the tech at the prisons. Everything from phone systems to PCs.  They also handle printers, and as a government agency, they print a lot.  Add to that their constant concern over security.  During my presentation, one of the IT guys asked about printer viruses.  Turns out he had just deployed some new anti-virus software and this was...

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Update Your Firmware...

I'm not sure how many times I've been asked to help problem solve some printer, MFP or similar technology. I'm often the 2nd or 3rd person at the site. Others have tried to resolve, and failed. When I arrive I go back to the basics: Is it plugged inIs it turned onDoes it have the latest firmwareIs it using the latest drivers / patchesCountless times the answer to #3 & #4 is "nope". I fully appreciate that firmware is not the answer to everyt...

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Multifunction Printers vs. Far...

I can’t begin to count the number of people who ask me for advice. Often it’s technology-related: computers, TVs, media players, smartphones, tablet, software, email service providers, ERPs, CRMs, cars, gaming consoles, but I also get questions about the best chiropractor, golf clubs, cheese, beer…the list goes on. Currently, I spend most of my days in the print, multifunction printer, and document management world, where I’m mainly asked about ...

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Dr. Strangeprinter or: How I L...

A few weeks back I was onsite working with a printer/mfp manufacturer on a set of strange printer issues. I won't go into too much detail about the problems (something for another day), suffice to say corrupted printer drivers on the server were making their way down to workstation and creating havoc. This caused users to lose the ability to print, re-install a driver, or even delete drivers from the workstation. This started with just a handful ...

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Inserting Print Commands...

I'm often asked about printing to a different paper tray from a legacy application on Windows.  When I say legacy, I simply mean an application that doesn't support Windows printer drivers per-se.  These application could be DOS-based or even Unix/Linux.  They create their own PCL or PS datastream and the Windows printer queue is simply a way to get the file to the printer. Your need might be to change the paper tray or some other change such as...

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Best Tool for Printer Creation...

Excel is the goofiest application. One one hand I have friends who use it to do actuarial calculations to determine what specific day you will die. On the other side I know accountants who are too lazy to learn Word so they create themselves a giant cell, 8.5 x 11 inches and enable text wrapping and voila -- it's a word processor. Throw in macros, VBA and its just about the most versatile application ever...and as such used for all sorts of thing...

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Capturing Print Output...

I'm often asked to debug a print problem. One of my key problem solving tools is the print file itself. Asking clients for a copy of the output is often difficult, most due to their uncertainty on how to go about this. The easiest way is to ask them to "print to file". This is fine when the app is Word or some other desktop application where there is a print to file option or the printer driver port can be set to File. But let’s say that the p...

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Forfiles - My favourite Comman...

Forfiles is my favourite addition to the command line. In my day-to-day, I find myself often needing to iterate through a directory of files. As a programmer, without Forfiles, I'd be looking to power up Visual Studio or PowerShell...overkill. As it's usually basic functionality I'm looking for a basic solution. Enter, the batch file. I'm the first to say that the Microsof built in command line tools and batch/script language is limited. It's ce...

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Swallowing PCL Commands...

It was a bunch of  years ago I had two clients with problem resolved by the same solution.  The first issue was the printing of a blank page at the start of the start of each print job a blank page would print, the other was the strange output behaviour because the host system was filling the initialization string with NUL characters.  The first should have been simple; however, the printer didn't support a suppress blank pages" (or similar) opti...

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PCL vs PS -- "FIGHT"...

I'm often asked for my opinion on PDLs (Page Description Languages). It's typically a very open ended question; “should you use Postscript or PCL”. This then seems to spark all sorts of controversy which it shouldn’t. In the end, why do you really care what PDL you use? As long as when you press print your document comes out of the printer properly formatted who really cares how it go there or in what language? That being said, some PDLs are a ...

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