Skip to main content

How to print from legacy applications and platforms

Printfil is an application which allows printing to windows printers from legacy platforms like MS DOS, Unix and Linux via tlnet or other terminal emulator software. It is also possible to print to USB easily.
PRN2FILE
PRN is well known as a short term for print and used an acronym since the DOS ages. In DOS the command PRN was used for the standard printer parallel Port, often also named as LPT1. The application DOSPRN simulates this. In this ages the LPT1 post was the only and dedicated port for printing and USB, network, Bluetooth and WiFi was not intended or used for printers.
With Windows a special kind of FILE was used to send the printing data to the printer. Creating such a file was easy for windows programs and applications., allows selecting to FILE as destination instead of a physical printer.
On some situations redirecting a print job to a file on disk is desirable because, for example, the real destination printer is not available in that moment, or just because we want to read a job on screen and trash it immediately, without wasting paper and ink for an unnecessary hardcopy.
How to print a PRN FILE in Windows
As we've said above a PRN file is a file on disk created by the Print to file option of a Windows program.
That file can be read on screen with the Windows Notepad only if you've choosen a "Generic / Text Only" printer when creating it because this way Windows normally creates a file containing a graphical print job, specifically designed to be PRINTED (not shown on screen) with the same printer originally selected when creating the file itself.
That file can be printed with a different printer model only if the printer driver originally selected was for a printer supporting a standard graphical language like HP-PCL or PostScript.
For example, if you did select a HP-PCL printer driver when creating the DOS PRN file, then that file can be printed to any HP-PCL capable printer, even if the printer is not exactly the same model selected when creating the file.
The same applies if you created the file by selecting a PostScript printer driver, but a PRN file containing PostScript data cannot be printed with an PCL capable printer, and a PRN file containing PCL data cannot be printed with a PostScript capable printer.
If instead you selected a GDI (also known as Windows-Only) printer when creating the DOS PRN file, then that file can be correctly printed only by that very same physical printer model later on.
Unfortunately, Windows allows easily creating a PRN file, but then there's no easy way to physically print it to a compatible printer.
Printfil easily overcomes this limit however. You just have to drag and drop the PRN file over the Printfil's icon on the desktop, then it will ask you to choose the destination printer on screen and Printfil will send the file there. That's all.
If you did choose to "associate DOS PRN files with Printfil" when requested during the Printfil installation, then a simple double-click on the PRN file is sufficient to print it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Tesla Model 3 - Dashboard Concept

Will 2017 be the year of Tesla Model 3? At last years Telsa Model 3 introduction event Elon Musk stated that first Model 3 will be shipped to customers by the end of 2017. Latest news show that currently production lines are set up and first Model 3 shall be produced by July 2017 and delivered mainly to employees as beta tester. For this reason it is very likely that we will see some Model 3 on Californias roads by mid of this year. Some expert expect the total production of cars for 2017 to 30000 up tp 50000 cars, where high production rates will be reached not before 2018.

The design of the Model 3 is well known since the introduction event back in March 2016, and it is expected that the outside will not change much. But there are some roumors that there will be quite some changes on the interior of the car especially the dashbord.

Recently I came across a new dashboard study. Have a look here.


Tesla Model 3 Future Windshield HUD User Interface Introduction

ArcGIS 10.1 Beta Launch and Deprecation Plan

ArcGIS 10.1 Beta 1 is now available for download to all those that have registered and been accepted into the program. Downloads have been made available from the Customer Care Portal and information and how to access this can be found on the ArcGIS Beta Community Site. This site is the portal for all information related to the beta.

One big drawback of ArcGIS 10.1:
There is no change in Desktop at 10.1 in regards to 64-bit support. ArcMap is a 32-bit application, but ESRI do support it running on 64-bit Windows. Currently ESRI is workung on a research project for native 64-bit ArcGIS application but it is not going to make 10.1.
ArcGIS 10.1 Deprecation Plan:
ARCGIS DESKTOP 10.1 ArcGIS 10.1 will no longer support the Solaris versions of ArcReader and ArcGIS Engine.ArcGIS 10.1 will be the last release supporting ArcReader for Linux.  SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server 5 will be supported.  However, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 and Red Hat Enterprise Lin…

Precize 3-D model of Mount Everest

The highest mountain on earth is now available as 3D terrain model free for download. The resolution of the model is 50 by 50 cm. Not everyone can climb the Mount Everest (even though several hundred cimbs are registered each year, and still claim their victims) from their living room.


Video: Mount Everest in 3D - Herstellervideo (1:34)

Scientists of the DLR (Deutsches Institut für Luft- und Raumfahrt) together with 3D Realitymaps and Digitalglobe have calculated a realistic three-dimensional model based on satellite imagery. The software for calculating the model was originally used for making 3D models of Mars. According to scientists currently it is not possible to create a more precise model based on civil satellites. The 8848 meters high mountain was recorded by various satellites and different angles. These data builds the foundation of the terrain model and 3D textures. To use the model on your personal computer you have to install a special viewer which can be downloaded via htt…