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Hardware Thread, HP Inkjet (& Lasers?) Solution that's worked in Technical; After sooooo many threads where folks have complained about driver issues, spooler shutdowns, stalled queues, etc... I've been slowly working ...
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    contink's Avatar
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    HP Inkjet (& Lasers?) Solution that's worked

    After sooooo many threads where folks have complained about driver issues, spooler shutdowns, stalled queues, etc... I've been slowly working through every variation of possible setup at one of my schools.

    In the end it seems the simplest and most workable solution was to setup VMWare on a lesser used server, install a vanilla Win Server 2003 R2, join it the network as a client NOT as an Active Directory controller and then install all those printers using the driver only installs.

    After that, deploy as normal using startup and login scripts (vbs)

    Startup script installs one of each printer type to the machine which helps remove any of the "not quite setup properly" driver install issues that come with login scripts.

    The login scripts handle all the printers required for that user.


    So far, touch wood, the only problem I've seen is that I need to put more memory in the host machine as it's complaining about using insufficient Virtual memory based on the 762Mb or virtual RAM I assigned it... I should be able to up it to 2Gb+ once I've got the extra sticks installed.


    I'm aware that the use of a vanilla installation of Win2k3r2 (without the dross) probably helps enormously, but the lack of other services, particularly AD, DNS, etc... is something that's been hinted at being a big contributor, so combined these approaches seem like the winning solution.


    Oh and to top if off, I have a script that runs every 40 minutes, checks for stalled jobs, if it finds anything older than 40 minutes it kills the print spooler service, kicks the stalled job and then restarts the spooler again...


    Hope this proves useful and input definitely welcome...

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    @contink: I found the reliable print server I could use was Debian running CUPS, Samba and PyKota. The only issue I now have is 64-bit printer driver problems - I need the x64 drivers for my terminal servers

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    Quote Originally Posted by contink View Post
    Hope this proves useful and input definitely welcome...
    We have pretty much the same setup - a plain Server 2003 VM just for printers. We mostly have HP Laserjet 4600 and Inkjet 1100/1200 printers. One thing we've found is that if one of the 1100s runs out of paper or ink and stops printing then they all stop printing - Server 2003 (or HP's driver) does some kind of dodgy resource-sharing thing and gets confused about there being more than one printer of the same type.

    I'm just sorting out a print accounting system now. I'm using the page count utility from PyKota (it's available as a separate package in Debian, very handy) and a couple of pages of Python code to keep track of who's printed what. This is running on a Debian server joined to our AD domain with Samba, but using plain System V printing instead of CUPS. Every printer is actually a generic Postscript printer, Postscript jobs get converted to PDF server-side by Ghostscript and passed to the Windows server for printing. This means that each workstation only needs a generic Postscript print driver to be able to print, which is included with Windows anyway. It also means I can easily divert print jobs, as PDF documents, to places other than a physical printer - a set of "homework handin" directories, for instance.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ric_ View Post
    @contink: I found the reliable print server I could use was Debian running CUPS, Samba and PyKota. The only issue I now have is 64-bit printer driver problems - I need the x64 drivers for my terminal servers
    Yeah, that's a workable one... it's just the issue of having to learn all the ins and outs of of a different OS and in my line (ie: primary) it's hard enough to get someone to use a vmware client or remote desktop connection, much less touch a linux setup.

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