General discussion

Locked

printer server

By highlander718 ·
What are these printer servers and what are they good for ? How are they working ? I can see they are like some small devices, I don't understand how and where you connect them and how you use them.
Any input would be greatky appreciated.
Thanks,

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

10 total posts (Page 1 of 1)  
| Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

printer server

by maxwell edison In reply to printer server

Yours is a real open ended question, but these links will probably provide the answers you're looking for.

"Frequently Asked Questions for: Printer Server"

http://tinyurl.com/489v

"Print Servers White Papers (55 papers)"

http://tinyurl.com/48a0

Collapse -

printer server

by highlander718 In reply to printer server

sorry, I actually posted my question, after visiting that same exact page (the first one) as a result of a basic search for "printer servers". I was hoping to get a "compact" answer exactly because time is not my ally these days.
Thanks, anyway...

Collapse -

printer server

by Joseph Moore In reply to printer server

Ok, I do not know what Operating System you are in, so I am gonna approach this answer from the Windows world.

Print Servers are just Windows devices (usually NT4 Servers or Win2K Servers, but they could also be NT4 Workstation or Windows 2000 Professional or XP Professional machines) that have a locally-attached printer; a "locally-attached printer" can either be a printer that is physically connected to the Server via a USB cable or a Printer 25-pin cable, or a network-attached printer like a HP Laserjet printer, which would be connected to your network, and the Laserjet software were installed on the Windows Server. Either way, when you look at the Printers applet on the Windows machine, the printers would appear as locally-attached.

The locally-attached printer on the Windows machine can then be shared out, so that other remote clients (other Windows Servers and desktop clients like Win2k Pro machines) can then send print jobs to the printer. A shared out locally-attached printer on a Windows Server can be called a "print queue." It is to the print queue that the remote clients send their print jobs to. The print queue then sends the job to the "print device," which is the physical printer itself.

Print servers arenice because you have a single place where print jobs can be managed, and print permissions can be configured. You would set the security on the print queue to allow your users to Print, or maybe even exclude certain people from printing.
You alsodo not have to install a print device to every user workstation when you use print servers. People just connect to the print server, they get the print drivers from the print server, and they spool their print jobs to the print queue.
YOu have a single place to look at what print jobs are pending to be printed (the print queue).

Collapse -

printer server

by Joseph Moore In reply to printer server

Now, a Windows server that is also a print server can also do other things, like be a Domain Controller, an E-mail server, a Database server, etc. There is not a lot of processing overhead for a print server; all you really need is drive space forthe print jobs to be spooled to before they are sent to the print device.

hope this helps

Collapse -

printer server

by highlander718 In reply to printer server

Thanks a lot, it's probably my mistake I wasn't more specific but I was refering to the devices Bud (see below) is talking about. I know you can share a printer connected to a workstation or server.

Collapse -

printer server

by BudTheGrey In reply to printer server

A print server is a device that controls a shared printer on some type of network. Many are very simple; a 'black box' that connects to the printer and then to the network. Network clients can "attach" to the print server and send jobs it's way. The print sever arbitrates who goes first, sends messages if the printer runs out of paper, etc. These are available for $40 up, and can be a very cost effective solution. Many printers come with a print server built-in. The Brother HL line is my favorite)

Computers running Windwos can also be print servers, by sharing a printer that is attached to them. This is cheaper, but can be less convienient, since the computer has to be turned on anytime someone want to use that printer. (In the case of Win2k server, of course, this isn't a problem)

HTH

Collapse -

printer server

by highlander718 In reply to printer server

OK. That's something to work with. We are almost there :-). Do I have to setup a printer queue (I'm running Active Directory here) or I will just be able to see and use the printer with the shared name on the network ? How about when I'm using one of those "black boxes" ? Is there any setup to be made, printer queues in my domain or things like that ?

Collapse -

printer server

by BudTheGrey In reply to printer server

Windows uses print queues, but hides them behind the moniker of "printer sharing". You as an administrator don't ever create a print queue directly; you share a printer on the server and Windows creates/manages a print queue behind the scenes.

Windows server communicates with that "attached" server in one of two ways -- directly, using a parallel or USB cable, or via the network.

The most common network connection type uses a protocol called LPR to talk to the "black box". The Windows server knows this as a "standard tcp printer port". To be able to configure this, you need to know the TCP/IP address of the black box (usually they ship with a utility to configure it). After that, setting up the printer is fairly straight forward.
Using this model (server shared) has the advantages of management & control, prioritized print jobs, automatic delivery of drivers, etc.. The downside is that if the server goes down, nobody prints.

Becuase Win2K professional knows how to usethis LPR protocol, so you could configure workstations to print directly to the network attached printer. You have to manually install drivers in this configuration. In this set up, the printer basically arbitrates who goes next, and print jobs spool at each workstation while they are waiting. I don't have any practical experience on how well this works with big jobs or many users.

Many black boxes can also be programmed to use Windows networking. They'll appear as a node when the usersbrowses the Network Neighborhood. Drivers have to be manually installed, but some people like this setup. It's my least favorite setup because some printers are very chatty on the network advertising their presence.

HTH

Collapse -

printer server

by highlander718 In reply to printer server

Thanks a lot.

Collapse -

printer server

by highlander718 In reply to printer server

This question was closed by the author

Back to Networks Forum
10 total posts (Page 1 of 1)  

Related Discussions

Related Forums