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Windows Thread, Print Server - "Universal Print Drivers" or many different individual drivers?????? in Technical; Can anyone please advise, We have just under 60 network printers on our print server. They are all either Canon, ...
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    Print Server - "Universal Print Drivers" or many different individual drivers??????

    Can anyone please advise,

    We have just under 60 network printers on our print server. They are all either Canon, HP or Samsung.

    Currently they each have the individual model driver installed for each type/model printer. Meaning we have about 25 different drivers installed.
    I have now installed three additional drivers, the Canon/HP/Samsung Universal Print Drivers. All printers work with these 3 drivers.

    Can anyone please suggest before I move all printers over to these 3 drivers and remove the old 25, if this is advised?

    Would it decrease login time (as a staff member with say 8 different printers would need only 2 drivers installed instead of eight?)
    Better for the server?
    UPD driver as fast as individual drivers etc?

    Thanks in advance!

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    It would certainly be less to go wrong and you would increase the chance of your clients already having the correct driver installed before printing. Don't forget that the printer drivers don't just reside on the print server in a Windows environment but also on all your clients.

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    Norphy's Avatar
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    The only caveat may be that the specific printer driver model may enable or expose features to that kind of printer (Such as duplexing) whereas the generic printer driver may not. Whether that's important is up to you.

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    marsdenprimary's Avatar
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    If it saves printer hell and faffing around then i'd go for it! Also- have you considered the possibility of reducing your printers rather than the drivers? Sounds like you've got a lot!!

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marsdenprimary View Post
    If it saves printer hell and faffing around then i'd go for it! Also- have you considered the possibility of reducing your printers rather than the drivers? Sounds like you've got a lot!!
    That was my initial thought... where I used to work I reduced the count for 30+ to about 14 by strategically placing MFDs. This also allowed for a nice managed print solution which added extra benefits such as 'follow me' printing and large format/higher quality prints for reduced cost.

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    ADMaster's Avatar
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    Hi burgemaster,

    In my experience it is best to go with the specific driver when possible. I have had strange errors and documents just not printing correctly when using the HP universal driver.

    In my setup the drivers are only installed during the first login after the printer is assigned, once they are installed they should not effect log in time.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dana_lehman View Post
    In my experience it is best to go with the specific driver when possible. I have had strange errors and documents just not printing correctly when using the HP universal driver.
    I'm finding the same thing with the Ricoh universal drivers - if nothing else, they seem horribly slow to respond, so when a user hits "print" there'll be a minute or so's delay while the print driver sorts itself out. I'm planning to distribute single-device drivers around during half term.

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    I have gone for only upd drivers, the canon pcl6 for photocopiers, HP generic upd (for your HP colour lasers they need to be a different one then the monos, ill dig out on Monday and let you know - the 1515s look like they work with the generic HP drivers, but start saying not enough memory). The samsung monos are using the Samsung upd. All fine and a lot easier. Key thing is to enable features on each printer (duplex for example)

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    Thanks all,

    Took a lot of work, but we now have all printers on UPDs. Photocopiers still use the speciic drivers as the UPDs didnt support some of the features. Only 6 print drivers installed.

    We also completely re-did the printer deployment. Before we were using GPP to deploy the printers, but this on windows 7 was dreadful, as all the printer installations were done before the user logs in (synchronous) when some staff with a large number of roaming printers (eg cover supervisers) it would take an age to login. It would sit there at "Processing Group Policy Printers Preferences" until the printers were completely installed.

    We ditched GPP for printers and went back to a VBS scripts. The scripts run after logon so the logon times have been drastically reduced! A massive improvement, staff should really notice the difference.

    The two scripts have full event logging, the first installs printers based on Computer location (e.g. IT Suite1) and also individual PC names, the second script installs printers based on group membership. The targeting with GPP was great, but everything is covered in the scripts.

    Thanks for advice.

  10. Thanks to burgemaster from:

    dhicks (5th November 2012)

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    sister_annex's Avatar
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    @burgemaster would you be able to share your script? We have moved away from GPP due to similar issues you were seeing. A working script would be a great starter for 10 for us, especially if it reduces logon times
    Last edited by sister_annex; 4th November 2012 at 04:37 PM. Reason: I'm a pedant!

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    ofcourse, i have removed most of the printers but left a few in there so you can see whats going on:

    First the script that deletes all installed printers (not local) and then maps printers based on computer location (set in the "environmental variables", eg LOCATION=IT1. We used GP to do this) and also maps printers for individual stray PCs:

    Code:
    on error resume next
    Set shell= WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    Set WshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Network")
    dim Counter, PrinterPath
    dim strResult, strLocation, strComputer
    
    'Remove All Network Printers.
    Const EVENT_SUCCESS = 0
    Const EVENT_FAILURE = 1
    Const EVENT_WARNING = 2
    Const EVENT_INFORMATION = 4
    
    function LogtoEvent (MSG,success)
    	select case success
    		case 1	shell.LogEvent EVENT_SUCCESS, MSG ' 1 is a success
    		case 0	shell.LogEvent EVENT_FAILURE, MSG ' 0 is a error
    		case 2	shell.LogEvent EVENT_WARNING, MSG ' 2 is a warning
    		case 3	shell.LogEvent EVENT_INFORMATION, MSG ' do not use
    	end select
    end function
    
    Set oPrinters = WshNetwork.EnumPrinterConnections
    FOR Counter = 0 to oPrinters.Count - 1
    	IF mid(oPrinters.Item(Counter), 1, 2) = "\\" THEN
    		PrinterPath = oPrinters.Item(Counter)
    		WshNetwork.RemovePrinterConnection PrinterPath, True, True
    	End If
    Next
    
    
    'Add Network Printers based on Location set in Environment Variables
    
    strLocation = shell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%LOCATION%")
    strComputer = shell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%COMPUTERNAME%")
    
    LogtoEvent "Printer STAFF COMPUTER Script Starting for: " & strComputer,1
    
    select case strComputer
    	case "S21"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Music - Photocopier",true
    
    	
    	case "M12"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\M11 Mono",true
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\M11 - Colour - CLP-600",false
    
    	case "EGR-OFFICE"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\EGR Office - Colour - HP 1510N",true	
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Main Admin Office - Photocopier",false
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Site Manager - Mono - HP1320",false
    		
    	
    end select
    
    
    select case strLocation	
    	
    	case "A7"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\A7 - Mono",true
    	
    	case "ADMINOFFICE"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Main Admin Office - Mono - HP1320",true
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Main Admin Office - Photocopier",false	
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Main Admin Office - Colour - CLP-600",false
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Reception - Mono - HP2015",false
    		
    
    	case "ART"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Art - Mono - ML-2855",true
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Art - Samsung CLP-510 Series",false
    
    	case "BURSAR"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Bursar - Mono",true
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Main Admin Office - Photocopier",false
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\EGR Office - Colour - HP 1510N",false
     
    	
    	case "STAFFROOM"
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Staff Room - Mono - Samsung ML3310",True
    		addPrinter "\\printserver\Staff Room - Colour",false	
    
    	
    		
    end select
    
    function addPrinter(strConnectString,isDefault)
    
    		if strConnectString <> "" then
    				LogtoEvent "Adding printer: " & strConnectString,1
    				strResult = WshNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection(strConnectString)
    			if isDefault then
    				LogtoEvent "Setting printer: " & strConnectString & " as default",1
    				WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter strConnectString
    			end if
    		end if
    end function
    
    LogtoEvent "Printer STAFF COMPUTER script finished",1
    
    runotherscript "\\LOCATION OF OTHER SCRIPT\Printers_USER.vbs"
    
    Sub runotherscript(name)
      Dim oShell
      Set oShell = WScript.CreateObject("WSCript.shell")
      oShell.run name, 1, true
      Set oShell = Nothing
    end sub
    Then the script that is called by the fist script that maps printers based on user group membership:

    Code:
    'Printer vbs for logon script
    On Error Resume Next
    Set shell= WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    Set WshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Network")
    dim Counter, PrinterPath
    dim strResult, strLocation, strComputer
    
    Const EVENT_SUCCESS = 0
    Const EVENT_FAILURE = 1
    Const EVENT_WARNING = 2
    Const EVENT_INFORMATION = 4
    
    function LogtoEvent (MSG,success)
    	select case success
    		case 1	shell.LogEvent EVENT_SUCCESS, MSG ' 1 is a success
    		case 0	shell.LogEvent EVENT_FAILURE, MSG ' 0 is a error
    		case 2	shell.LogEvent EVENT_WARNING, MSG ' 2 is a warning
    		case 3	shell.LogEvent EVENT_INFORMATION, MSG ' do not use
    	end select
    end function
    
    wscript.sleep(1000) '1 second
    
    'determines the user who just logged on
    
    Set objSysInfo = CreateObject("ADSystemInfo")
    Set objNetwork = CreateObject("Wscript.Network")
    strUserPath = "LDAP://" & objSysInfo.UserName
    Set objUser = GetObject(strUserPath)
    
    LogtoEvent "Printer STAFF USER Script Starting for: " & objSysInfo.UserName,1
    
    
    
    For Each strGroup in objUser.MemberOf
        strGroupPath = "LDAP://" & strGroup
        Set objGroup = GetObject(strGroupPath)
        strGroupName = objGroup.CN
    
    LogtoEvent "Staff Member is in group: " & strGroupName,1
    
    'Mapping of printers by group and set default printer for that group
    Select Case strGroupName
    
    Case "All Staff"
               objNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection "\\printserver\Reprographics - Mono"
    	   objNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection "\\printserver\Reprographics - Colour"
    
    Case "Dolphin College"
               objNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection "\\printserver\Dolphin - Office Mono"
       	   objNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection "\\printserver\Library - Colour - CLP600"
    
    Case "ICT Teachers"
               objNetwork.AddWindowsPrinterConnection "\\printserver\Maths ICT Office - Mono"
    
           
    '==========Add addtional case sections for each group above================
    
    
            
        End Select
    next
    wscript.sleep(100) '0.1 second
    LogtoEvent "Printer USER script finished",1

  13. Thanks to burgemaster from:

    sister_annex (7th November 2012)

  14. #12

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    Also here is the "Computer startup script" used to set location. In this case applying this to the staffroom PCs to set their location to STAFFROOM:

    Code:
    rem *** Copy the setx application from netlogon to c:\ ***
    copy \\SERVER\netlogon\apps\setx.exe c:\
    
    rem *** Apply setx to change or add the location ***
    c:\setx.exe LOCATION STAFFROOM -m

  15. Thanks to burgemaster from:

    sister_annex (7th November 2012)

  16. #13

    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by burgemaster View Post
    We ditched GPP for printers and went back to a VBS scripts. The scripts run after logon so the logon times have been drastically reduced!
    I've just managed to get our domain to 2008 functional level after removing the old 2003 DCs, I was thinking to move from login scripts to printers being deployed via active directory as I figured that was the proper way to do things, but after reading the above I think I'll stick with what we have.

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    I've just managed to get our domain to 2008 functional level after removing the old 2003 DCs, I was thinking to move from login scripts to printers being deployed via active directory as I figured that was the proper way to do things, but after reading the above I think I'll stick with what we have.
    We use GPP and its very fast although we do not delete all shared printers and re-install them at every logon.

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