Almost universal lprng print filter
[-F format] [-s statusfile] [-?value (other LPRng filter options)]
The ifhp is a general purpose filter for allmost all PostScript, PJL, PCL, and text based line printers.
The ifhp filter resets and synchronizes the printer, gets accounting information, and then checks the file to determine its format. Based on the format, it will do PCL, PostScript, or other initializations, and then transfer the file to the printer. Termination sequences are sent, followed by getting accounting information.
Options controlling ifhp operations are specified by -Toption or -Zoption values. These options have the form:
Form Same As flag flag=1 [email protected] flag=0 flag=str flag#str
The complete set of options and their effect on operation are detailed in the IFHP-HOWTO document. The following is a brief list of the more important ones that will have a dramatic effect on printer operation.
Specifies the printer modelid information. This is used to select an appropriate configuration from the ifhp configuration file.
status ([email protected])
The status option enables checking for status information from the printer. See STATUS, SYNC, WAITEND, AND PAGECOUNT for details.
sync ([email protected], sync=ps, sync=pjl)
waitend ([email protected], waitend=ps, waitend=pjl)
If the status option is enabled, sync will check to see that the printer is online and ready and the waitent will check that the job has finished. The [email protected] and [email protected] will suppress these checks. See STATUS, SYNC, WAITEND, AND PAGECOUNT for details.
pagecount ([email protected], pagecount=ps, pagecount=pjl)
If the status option is enabled, pagecount will try to get the value of the printer pagecounter. See STATUS, SYNC, WAITEND, AND PAGECOUNT for details.
pathnames of configuration files to read to obtain printer configuration information.
Set the debugging level. A larger number causes more verbose error messages. You have been warned.
Sends out debugging and tracing information on STDERR as well as to the status log file.
Sets serial line configuration when a dev entry specified.
If the status option is true, then the ifhp filter will assume that the printer is attached by a bidirectional channel and will attempt to read status information from the printer. This also enables the sync, sync and pagecount handshaking and getting pagecount information from the printer.
The sync flag causes a special PJL job or PostScript job to be sent to the printer at the start of printing at periodic intervals. This job has the property that it will attempt to put the printer into a sane state and cause it to return status information. By default, if the printer supports PJL then the PJL job is used, otherwise if it supports PostScript, the PostScript job is used. You can force the sync method using sync=pjl or sync=ps if necessary, and suppress it using [email protected]
The waitend flag causes a special PJL job or PostScript job to be sent to the printer at the end of the job at periodic intervals. This job has the property that it will attempt to put the printer into a sane state and cause it to return status information. By default, if the printer supports PJL then the PJL job is used, otherwise if it supports PostScript, the PostScript job is used. You can force the waitend method using waitend=pjl or waitend=ps if necessary, and suppress it using [email protected]
The pagecount flag causes a special PJL job or PostScript job to be sent to the printer at the start and end of the job. This job has the property that it causes the printer to return the value of a hardware page counter. By taking the difference of the start and end values of the pagecounter, an accurate measure of the number of pages (or impressions for some duplex printers) can be done. By default, if the printer supports PJL then the PJL job is used, otherwise if it supports PostScript, the PostScript job is used. You can force the pagecount method using pagecount=pjl or pagecount=ps if necessary, and suppress it using [email protected]
The IFHP filter will puts tracing and status information in the file specified by the -s command line flag. If the status file does not exist, it will not be created. The diagnostic trace flag overrides this and directs the status to STDERR.
The pagecount information is put into the accounting file specified on the command line. If the accounting file does not exist, it will not be created.
The lpr program passes the command line -Z options or the lp program -o options to the LPRng lpd server which then passes them to the ifhp filter. The options are used to control various printing features. For example if duplex printing and landscape is wanted, then
lpr -P<printer> -Z'duplex,landscape' <file>
Since each printer has a different set of capabilities there are no standard set of -Z options. The following is a sample of the options provided by ifhp. Check the ifhp.conf file for all of the options supported by the printer.
Input Tray Selection
inupper, inlower, intray1, intray2, intray3, manual, envelope
The input tray selection options should start with the in prefix and corresponds to the various trays. The manual and envelope options are included to select manual feed or envelope feed. There is a possible source of conflict here as there may be an envelope feeder as well as an envelope media. This is a printer specific dependency.
The source=name option allows users to use options such as -Zsource=inbin1, which may be useful for systems that have an unusual or nonstandard input selection mechanism. se select media (paper) from the specified tray or feeder.
Output Bin Selection
outupper, outlower, outbin1
The output bin selection should start with the out prefix.
The outbin=name form allow users to use options such as -Zoutbin=stapler, which may be useful for systems that have an unusual or nonstandard output selection mechanism.
Media Size Selection
a0 a1 a2 a3 a4 a5 a6 a7 a8 a9 a10 b0 b1 b2 b3 b4 b5 archA archB archC archD archE flsa flse halfletter note letter legal 11x17 ledger tabloid
The paper size selection facilities usually are quite printer dependent, and the input tray selection and paper size selection mechanisms may interact in strange and mysterious ways.
The paper=name form allow users to use options such as -Zpaper=b3, which may be useful for systems that have an unusual or nonstandard input media selection mechanism.
Media Type Selection
plain, preprinted, letterhead, transparency, glossy, prepunched, labels
bond, recycled, color, heavy, cardstock
Media Type is not the same as paper size, and corresponds to the name assigned to a particular media. Of course, the issue is complicated by the fact that some media have standard sizes as well. Again, the input tray selection, media size, and media type selection will interact in confusing and mysterious ways, depending on the whim of the printer firmware iplementors.
You will notice that there is no generic mediatype=name facility. This is due to the radically different way that PostScript, PJL, PCL, etc., each handle media name and selection. While it is possible to determine the various strings, numbers, escape codes, etc., that need to be sent for each mediatype, a general mechanism is too fragile and fraught with peril for the unwary administrator to provide. You have been warned. Been there and have the scars to prove it.
These are commonly used media type names gleaned from various PostScript Printer Description Files, Microsoft printer drivers, and arcane lore of the Printer Working Group. Note that these are not accepted terms in the paper industry for any of these type of media. You are warned.
duplex (lduplex) duplexshort (sduplex)
The duplex (alias lduplex) and duplexshort (alias sduplex) will print on both sides of the paper; duplexshort will reverse the orientation; simplex will print only on one side of the paper.
The tumble (shortedge) will reverse the orientation of the paper. Used when printing facing pages of duplex and there is a desperate need for this orientation.
Be aware that this option is totally bogus is usually ignored (except when you expect it to be ignored). You have been warned.
The OF mode of operation is selected by the -Fo command line option. When operationg in OF mode it will scan the input for a two character stop sequence \031\011. When it finds the sequence it will suspend itself. The spooler will restart the filter with a SIGCONT signal when it has more output for it.
They are not bugs. They are mis-documented features.
The IFHP filter was inspired by the LPRng CTI-ifhp filter, which was a descendent of the print filters developed by the CTI-Print project at the Division of Computing Facilities of the Computer Technology Institute (CTI), Patras, Greece.
Patrick Powell, Astart Technologies, San Diego, CA <[email protected]>