Chapter 20 - Setting Up Printers

Archived content. No warranty is made as to technical accuracy. Content may contain URLs that were valid when originally published, but now link to sites or pages that no longer exist.

Before setting up printers, it's important to understand the distinction between a printing device and a printer that you create using the Add Printer wizard:

  • A printing device is the hardware that actually does the printing, such as a Hewlett-Packard® LaserJet®. 

  • A printer you create using Windows NT Server is a software interface between the document and the printing device. You create a printer using the Add Printer wizard, and each printer sends jobs to the printing device, according to the specified priority—for example, on a first-come, first-served basis.

These concepts and others are explained more fully in the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide.

Services for Macintosh Print Server

When Services for Macintosh (SFM) is set up, several AppleTalk services are integrated into Windows NT Server. The print server, called Print Server for Macintosh, is integrated into the Windows NT Server Printers folder. The print server makes printers connected to the computer running Windows NT Server available to Macintosh clients, and it makes AppleTalk PostScript printers (with LaserWriter drivers) available to PC clients.

When the print server receives print jobs from the print server, it sends them to a spooler, which is a portion of the hard disk. The spooler then sends the print job to the specified printing device—for example, to a printing device on the AppleTalk network. This enables Macintosh users, as well as PC users, to submit print jobs and continue working on their computers without waiting for the print job to complete.

The print server also translates all incoming PostScript files if the print request is to a non-PostScript printer attached to the computer running Windows NT Server. So, a Macintosh client (but not a Windows NT client) can send a PostScript job to any Windows NT Server printer.

Note This implementation of Postscript RIP for SFM supports 300 dpi and Postscript level 1.

Stopping and Restarting the Print Server

When you set up SFM, all services are automatically started, including the print server. You might want to stop and restart the print server if, for example, you must remove a printing device. You stop and restart the Print Server for Macintosh using the Services icon in Control Panel.

To stop and restart Print Server for Macintosh 

  1. From Control Panel, choose the Services icon. 

  2. From the Service list, select Print Server For Macintosh

  3. Click Stop or Start, as appropriate. 

    To change options at startup, click Startup

  4. Click Close. 

Printing on a Network

The following list shows the three scenarios for printing on a network:

  • PC clients send print requests to printers representing printing devices attached to a computer running Windows NT Server. 

  • Macintosh clients send print requests to printers representing printing devices on an AppleTalk network. 

  • Macintosh and PC clients send print requests to printers representing printing devices attached to a computer running Windows NT Server (for example, to a non-PostScript printing device such as the HP DeskJet® 500) and to printing devices on an AppleTalk network (for example, to a PostScript printing device such as the Apple LaserWriter).

Printing is very easy in each of these scenarios. PC users simply specify printers on a computer running Windows NT Server and send print jobs to them as usual, whether the printing device is attached to the server itself or located elsewhere on the network. Similarly, Macintosh users have the familiar Chooser interface to use for connecting to printers that are set up for both AppleTalk printing devices and those attached to a computer running Windows NT Server.

The first two scenarios are the common setup for networks serving either PC or Macintosh clients, respectively. Setup options for PCs and printers attached to a computer running Windows NT Server are explained in the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide. Macintosh network and printer options are explained in Macintosh software manuals. The last scenario is explained in this chapter.

Planning the Setup of Printing Devices

With SFM, installing and setting up printing devices and creating printers is no different than what you'd normally do using Windows NT Server, with one exception: The print server and file server must appear in the same zone. However, there are some performance issues worth considering.

In PC networks printing devices have traditionally attached to a server through serial or parallel ports, whereas printing devices used on Macintosh networks have traditionally attached to the network using a LocalTalk connection. With SFM, you can attach a printing device to a computer running Windows NT Server, or put it on the AppleTalk network. Either way, both types of clients can send print jobs to the printing device. (If on AppleTalk, the printer must be a PostScript printer that uses the LaserWriter driver.)

To obtain fastest performance, attach printing devices to the network rather than to a port. The following attachment options are listed in slowest to fastest order:

  1. The printing device is connected to a serial port attached to the computer running Windows NT Server.

    (Some older models of the Apple LaserWriter can be attached only to a serial port, not to a parallel port.) 

  2. The printing device is connected to a parallel port attached to the computer running Windows NT Server. 

  3. The printing device is connected to the AppleTalk network through LocalTalk, which is the typical Macintosh network attachment. 

  4. The printing device is connected to AppleTalk through the token ring or ethernet media.

How you attach printing devices to AppleTalk depends on the type of network media you are using for your AppleTalk network. Most Macintosh-compatible printing devices have LocalTalk connections to AppleTalk. If your network is ethernet or token ring, you might need to do one of the following before adding a printing device to it:

  • Install a LocalTalk/ethernet or LocalTalk/token-ring router on your network. 

  • Install a LocalTalk card in the server, and connect the printing device to it. The server will act as a router between the ethernet network and the LocalTalk network where the printing device is located.

The type of printing devices with built-in ethernet interfaces offer the best performance. These printing devices attach directly to the network and don't need to be physically close to the computer running Windows NT Server. Also, they print at faster network transmissions speeds than printers that rely on parallel or serial connections.

Creating a Printer on a Computer Running Windows NT Server

After you have physically attached a printing device to a computer running Windows NT Server (either directly or on a network), use the Add Printer wizard to create a printer that represents it. You can create more than one printer representing the same printing device.

For example, if you have a printing device in your office but also share it with others over the network, you might want to create two printers representing the printing device. You can create a printer for yourself that is not shared over the network and a second printer that is shared. Then it's easy to control the use of the shared printer. You can set permissions on the shared printer, ensuring that only members of your department can print to it. Or you can set a low priority for it, ensuring that documents you send to the printer will always print before documents sent by those who share it.

Another common example is to create a printer that spools to a printing device at night and another printer that spools to the same printing device during the day.

To create a printer, you must be logged on with sufficient permissions. Administrators, Server Operators, and Print Operators can create printers.

To create a printer 

  1. From the Start menu, choose Settings and then choose Printers

  2. In the Printers dialog box, click Add Printer

  3. Follow the Add Printer wizard to choose the printer ports, printer driver, and printer name. You can also set printer properties such as location and scheduling information.

See the online Help during setup for more information.

Note The printer name can be up to 32 characters in length. This name will appear in the title bar of the printer window. By default, it is the name that network users (except MS-DOS users) will see when you share the printer.

Choose the Share this printer option during setup. In the Share Name box, specify the printer name that you want MS-DOS clients to see.

When you are selecting a destination, if the printing device is physically connected to the Windows NT Server computer, then select the appropriate port. If the printing device is on the network, click Add Port. Choose AppleTalk Printing Devices from the Printer Ports dialog box and click OK. From the Available AppleTalk Printing Devices dialog box, select a zone and a printer, and click OK.

Setting Up a User Account for Macintosh Print Jobs

After setting up SFM, you should create an account that will be used by all Macintosh clients when printing jobs to captured AppleTalk printing devices or to other devices on the computer running Windows NT Server. You should also configure Print Server for Macintosh to use this account.

After it is created, the user account (for example, MACUSERS) appears in the list of names that appears when you choose Permissions from the Security menu in Print Manager. You can give specific rights to this user account, just as you would any user account, including Print and No Access.

For more information about permissions, see Chapter 22, "Managing the File Server." For information on creating a user account and more specific information for configuring it to run with a service (such as Print Server for Macintosh), see the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide.

To configure the Print Server for Macintosh service to use a user account 

  1. From Control Panel, choose the Services icon. 

  2. In the Services dialog box, select Print Server For Macintosh

  3. Click Startup

  4. In the Print Server For Macintosh dialog box, click This Account and type or choose the user account— for example, MACUSERS. 

  5. To require a password for Macintosh users of the computer running Windows NT Server, type a password in the Password box and confirm it. 

  6. Click OK

Enabling Clients to Use Printers on the AppleTalk Network

With SFM, both PC and Macintosh clients can send print jobs to printing devices or spoolers on the AppleTalk network.

The printing device must appear as a LaserWriter in the Chooser, and there must be a Windows NT print driver for the printing device.

Macintosh clients use printers just as they normally do—through the Chooser. If an AppleTalk printer has been set up through Print Manager, it can be captured so that Macintosh clients cannot access it directly. This causes Macintosh print jobs go through the computer running Windows NT Server and be spooled along with print jobs from PC clients.

You can disable the capture setting. Doing so enables any Macintosh client to print to an AppleTalk printer directly. There are a few problems with this scenario, the most important being that the jobs will not be under the administrator's control.

To release or recapture an AppleTalk printing device 

  1. In Printers, select an AppleTalk printing device. 

  2. From the File Menu, choose Properties. 

  3. In the Ports tab, click Configure Port

    A dialog box appears, asking if you want to capture this AppleTalk printing device.

  4. Choose Yes to capture it or No to release it. 

  5. Click OK. 

When an AppleTalk printer is released, any Macintosh user on the AppleTalk network can use the device directly.

A printing device on AppleTalk can be captured when SFM is set up and a printer is created for it. It must remain captured so that all Macintosh clients send print jobs through the computer running Windows NT Server. If a printing device has been released for some reason, you can recapture it.

You can select another spooler instead of an actual device. Use this type of configuration with caution. It is possible to create an endless loop of print spooling with this method.

Advanced Topics

Whether printing devices are attached to the computer running Windows NT Server or are located elsewhere on the AppleTalk network, the Printers folder displays a list of print jobs for the respective printers you created to represent the devices. Each list, by default, presents jobs in first-come, first-served order. You can change the priority of jobs, however, and specify permissions for the printer and times for print jobs to run. For example, you can do the following:

  • Set up multiple printers that all send print jobs to a single printing device. You might want to assign the printers a priority number (such as high-priority and low-priority), or assign times for the printer to spool its jobs (such as during business hours or only during the night).

  • Set up a single printer that sends print jobs to a pool of printing devices. Doing this can make printing more efficient because print jobs are sent to the first available printing device in the pool.

An illustration of the first approach follows:


Creating Multiple Printers for a Single Printing Device

You might want to create multiple printers, all of which send print jobs to a single printing device. Each printer has a print-priority level associated with it. If you create two printers and associate them with a single printing device, jobs routed to the printer with the highest priority (lowest number) print first.

For PC users, it's a good idea to create a group that corresponds to each printer. For example, users in Group1 might have access rights to a priority-1 printer, users in Group2 might have access rights to a priority-2 printer, and so on. This allows you to prioritize print jobs according to the users submitting their jobs. (Refer to the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide for more information.)

For Macintosh users, however, one user account must be created for all incoming print jobs to the computer running Windows NT Server. Consequently, all Macintosh users sending print jobs through the computer running Windows NT Server will have the same access rights.

To specify priorities for printers sending jobs to a single printing device 

  1. If necessary, create the two (or more) printers and share them, using procedures described earlier in this chapter and in the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide

  2. For each printer, from the File menu, choose Properties

  3. In the Scheduling tab, use the slide bar to select a priority in the Priority box. 

    Higher priority jobs will print before lower priority jobs.

  4. Click OK.

You can also create two printers that postpone the print jobs—for example, one that releases its queued jobs at night and another that release queued jobs during daytime hours. To do so, use the Scheduling tab to change the hours that each printer is available. For more information about setting up printers, refer to the Windows NT Server Concepts and Planning Guide and to online Help.

Creating Printing Pools

When you create a printer, you can associate it with more than one printing device in order to form a printing pool. A printing pool consists of two or more similar printing devices associated with one printer name. To set up a pool, you create a printer and assign it as many output ports as you have identical printing devices. Printing pools have the following characteristics:

  • All devices in the pool share the same print property settings and act as a single unit. For example, stopping one device pauses them all. 

  • Print destinations can be of the same type or mixed (serial, parallel, and network). 

  • When a job arrives for the printing pool, the spooler on the computer running Windows NT Server checks the destinations to see which device is idle. The first port selected gets checked first, the second port second, and so on. If your pool consists of a different type of port, make sure you select the fastest port first (network, then parallel, and then serial). 

  • A printing pool can contain a mixture of printer interface types, but the printing devices must all use the same printer driver.