Printing Problems - tips, tricks and how to Fast Deploy

General IT related topics, not specfic to Jiwa

Printing Problems - tips, tricks and how to Fast Deploy

Postby Hyperus » Mon Oct 27, 2008 3:11 pm

Printing is probably one of the biggest bains of all of our lives - it wreaks havoc in most of what we are trying to do day-to-day. I have drafted the below info for those that are not aware why windows doesn't seem to *hold* the saved values on a lot of occassions.

First thing to mention is the *most* common mis-configuration of printers in a server or domain environment - this is purely my opinion of course - but given our years of issues and resolutions with user printing problems - I feel this warrants a mention. We often are resolving issues for clients who have "browsed" via network places or other UNC browsing method who simply Double-Click on the server print share which installs an RPC-Based UNC printer driver on the workstation(client). The issue with this is that the printer driver installed on the client workstation using this method can sometimes (depending on network security of the user) actually gain control (RPC-Based) over some of the server printer features and can have an unfortunate side effect of controlling the server printer driver for ALL workstations - which can be very undesirable when it comes to default trays etc for workstations in various departments who relay on different trays, page settings etc just to name a few.

To work-around this, we always recommend installing using a slightly more complex method but when combined with the procedure below actually makes life a LOT easier and produces a great deal less issues on a network. The method is as follows :-
Start - Control Panel - Printers and Faxes
File Menu - Server properties - Ports
Add Port... Local Port... New Port
\\ServerName\PrinterShare
then click OK to accept the new port
You now have a new LOCAL-Network port that if used correctly will no longer allow any user to control printer options of another user. The next step is to install the printer driver manually from your driver CD. Choose LOCAL Printer and LOCAL Port - then when prompted for the port - scroll down the port list to the new Local-network port you created (\\ServerNams\PrinterShare) and follow the prompts to complete installation. You now have installed a LOCAL-Network printer that should give you the flexibility you require without all of the headaches that normally follow RPC-Based printer installations.

Windows usually maintains 6 to 13 (yes up to 13 !!) different sets of page setup/customisation values for each and every printer driver you have installed in Control Panel - Printers. These settings can be accessed as follows:-
START - Printers and Faxes. For EACH AND EVERY PRINTER:-

1. Right Click the printer - Printing preferences - Advanced
2. Right Click the printer - Printing preferences - Paper/Quality
3. Right Click the printer - Printing preferences - Effects
4. Right Click the printer - Printing preferences - Finishing
5. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Preferences... - Advanced
6. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Preferences... - Paper/Quality
7. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Preferences... - Effects
8. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Preferences... - Finishing
9. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Defaults... - Advanced
10. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Defaults... - Paper/Quality
11. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Defaults... - Effects
12. Right Click the printer - Properties - General - Printing Defaults... - Finishing
13. Right Click the printer - Properties - Device Settings

*Typically you will find that 1 to 4 are a mirror of 5 to 8 - but not always

Under each of these sections are a number of Page Size, Printer Enhancement and other options that can adversely affect printer output. Only experience can really dictate the fully safe options.

Now... once you have completed this for each of these options (exhausting as it is) you then rinse and repeat for EACH printer in the printer list **sigh**.

Well, there is an easier way for the other workstations - you will still have to do the above at least once to build a set of printer driver templates (with settings), but once complete you can use a very handy printer driver/settings backup utility called "Microsoft PrintMig" available here :-

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/deta ... laylang=en
(NOT for Vista/Windows 2008 - these require PrintBrm.exe)

Once downloaded you can deploy it manually or however you see fit to a network drive etc. Run it - Choose the "Actions" menu then "Backup...". Choose an output location and file and once you have typed your filename click "Open" to start the export/save process. This process can actually take quite some time - be patient here.

Once complete, you can now move to another workstation, run PrintMig again and choose Action - Restore, and navigate to the .CAB file you backed up in the previous step. Again, this can take quite some time on slower machines - please be patient. Once this is done, you should have the complete set of printers that you backed up INCLUDING all settings that you customised - this should save you hours of work, frustrations with clients and mistakes with settings.... basically you only ever now have to get the settings right the first time :)

/Roy Adams
Last edited by Hyperus on Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Hyperus
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Re: Printing Problems - tips, tricks and how to Fast Deploy

Postby Mike.Sheen » Sat Nov 01, 2008 6:20 pm

Thanks, Roy - printing certainly is the bane of many, if not all of us here at Jiwa and our extended JSP family.

I will certainly be referring to this post in tech support related cases!

[EDIT] : Moved to General IT forum.
Mike Sheen
Chief Software Engineer
Jiwa Financials

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