Install Colour printer only for staff - but flexibly...
As for everyone, printing here can cost a bit. We're not as bad as many but it's still been largely unrestricted so there is definitely room for improvement.
We're just about to go onto lease-hire to cut down costs, but I'd like to cut down usage as well - in particular, colour. First, the background.
At the moment there's a lot of redundant machines, because where we want colour for staff and mono for students, there are physically two printers - one colour, one mono, and the colour is only added for staff.
We're a vanilla Win2003 R2/XP environment, with printers added via GPO (pushprinterconnections.exe), and we do run PCounter (2.40), although we barely use it to any of its potential.
What we're doing
With the new lease hire printers, we're consolidating such situations to just one colour printer, and what I'd like is for staff to have colour available, and students to only have mono.
I want it to be able to add the relevant colour printer for a room, so ideally the GPO should be added to the computer OU, not the user. I can then create two printers in PCounter - one that is forced to mono (deletes any colour jobs) and one that allows colour that is only added for staff, through security filtering. If we can get hold of mono/colour drivers we can do it that way, instead.
Ideally I want to be able to add students to this group as necessary as well - i.e., coursework time, rather than the teacher having to do all the colour printing we can just add the relevant students into the group for the time being to allow them colour, and remove them at the end.
Just to add to the complication as well, I want a couple of rooms to always be able to print in colour (e.g. Art), regardless of who is logged on - so if it's a one off colour job, instead of the student having to be added to the group, log off, log on, print, we remove them from the group etc. - instead, they can just go to the relevant room and log on there to print in colour.
:confused:Can I create a GPO that uses pushprinterconnections as a user script, uses security filtering, and add this GPO to the computer OUs? Is it that easy? I could then create a separate GPO for the rooms that should always have colour that just pushes that out at a machine level.
:confused:Would it be easier, perhaps, to just add the printer once, as colour, but price colour in PCounter so that students can't afford to print? Staff are unlimited. We can then change a student to unrestricted when necessary. The always-colour-rooms just won't have the multiplier applied in PCounter.
:confused:Does other software do this better/easier? Paperclip gets mentioned a lot round here. Obviously, though, this involves spending money so I'm keen not to reinvent the wheel (as it were) by purchasing software to replace software we already own.
I'm going to play with options anyway, as much as anything this post is just about forcing me to put everything down in writing so I can work it through in my own head, but if anyone has already solved this problem with a flash of inspiration that I've so far been denied, please let me know!
ADDED BONUS: If anyone knows how to force the default printer as well, that'd be lovely, so I can make the mono option the default for staff. I suppose I could always add the mono-only exclusively for students, and colour for staff, and just default that printer to mono - might be better as they will just choose colour in the normal way then.