Windows 7 Driver Upload Methodology

With Windows 7 now officially released we are now receiving a lot of
pressure to upgrade iPrint to support the new OS.  We have approximately
800 NDPS/iPrint printers across our entire organization.  To make the
situation more complicated we have printers from multiple manufacturers
(HP, Kyocera, Brother, etc).  Is there a quick and dirty method for
rolling out Windows 7 drivers to the broker or must we handle each
printer individually, both 32bit and 64bit?  This will take one person a
solid week easily, and I know they have better things to do.

I guess a second question is in order.  Is there a way to have users
provide their own drivers instead of pushing them down from the print
broker itself?  Maintaining our print broker is the most difficult part
of supporting out iPrint infrastructure.  

Any info is appreciated.

Matthew Lilli
Clemson University


-- 
Phulcrum27
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0
Phulcrum27
10/30/2009 6:16:03 PM
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Is this iPrint running on NetWare or on OES2/Linux? For NetWare, I don't 
know how to solve your problem, but for Linux, you might probably be able 
to simplify the task by doing some scripting and using the iprntman tool:

http://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/iprint_lx/data/b9xw13b.html

-- 
Marcel Cox
http://support.novell.com/forums
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Marcel Cox's Profile: http://forums.novell.com/member.php?userid=8
0
Marcel
11/1/2009 8:42:27 AM
As far as I know there is no quick and dirty way to upload a Windows driver 
to the Broker. It is easy with Linux/Mac drivers since they are just text 
files (ppd's). Windows drivers are much more complicated and the Broker 
creates a zipped package of files that are need by Windows when a driver is 
installed.

> must we handle each printer individually, both 32bit and 64bit?

What you must do is both better and worse than is implied in this question 
;-). Better: you only need to upload the driver to the Broker ONCE for each 
MODEL of printer for each PLATFORM (32 bit, 64 bit), not for each and every 
printer. You probably know that.

Worse: after you upload the driver you then need to assign the driver for 
each and every printer agent.

So, if you have 10 models of printer then you will be uploading 20 drivers 
to the Broker (10 x 32-bit plus 10 x 64-bit). No big deal, eh? Then for your 
800 printer agents you will need to assign the two new drivers (32-bit and 
64-bit). That is where the real work is. But there is hope! This part of the 
process can be done much faster than through iManager.

There is a tool that Novell makes called PAGen.exe - Printer Agent 
Generator. This is a Windows command-line utility that takes a csv file as 
input and can create both the eDir Print Agent object and the ndps manager 
agent. I haven't tried this idea but feel free to test it out : modify the 
csv file that ndps manager creates as a backup of the ndps database. The 
modification that I am thinking of is to add the info for each printer agent 
that would link the printer agent to the new Win7 32-bit and 64-bit drivers 
that are stored in the Broker. After modifying the csv you can then run 
pagen.exe to recreate the database.

Of course you will want to test this on a non-production system first. I'd 
also suggest that you first do a normal Printer Agent driver assignment for 
the new Win7 drivers via iManager for just one Printer Agent. Then you will 
have a csv file that has all the right formatting/info that you can use as a 
template.

The tool pagen.exe can be obtained here:
http://download.novell.com/Download?buildid=0moHD6Yyr1g~

> I guess a second question is in order.  Is there a way to have users
> provide their own drivers instead of pushing them down from the print
> broker itself?

Yes, but I have only done this on WinXP so the procedure may not be the same 
on Win7...also there are a couple of paths you can take in Windows as far as 
setting up the port (eg local vs network). Have a look at this TID 7003442 
for an example of using the Add Printer Wizard to set up network port using 
IPP. Another wrinkle in using the non-iPrint-client approach is introduced 
by whether or not your printers are Secure (Require SSL/TLS), whether or not 
you support LPR clients, whether or not you have job accounting set up (eg 
PCounter or PaperCut). Bottom line is that it is far far easier to use the 
iPrint client than not. Also do you want to troubleshoot a small handfull of 
drivers over which you have complete control, or do you want to let all 
users set up any driver that they want in any fashion that they want? 
Personally I much prefer the former and I'll bet you will too.

Cheers,

Ron
UBC Okanagan


0
Ron
11/2/2009 3:21:34 AM
Reply:

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