IHS Systems' software solution udkServe Print Conversion Software™ translates print data streams from Xerox XES to PCL print commands. This enables customers to use any PCL printer to replace obsolete Xerox printers that depend on the Xerox XES print commands.
IHS Systems' software needed a way to receive print jobs from mainframe computers via TCP/IP then save the jobs to disk. Once saved, udkServe could access the jobs and perform the proper conversions (for example, XES print commands to PCL). With the data in the proper format, the jobs then needed to be printed directly to TCP/IP printers without using a print server.
When printing to TCP/IP printers, some customers also needed a failover printing policy in place, so if a printer were to fail, the job would automatically be redirected to another available printer, ensuring that all jobs printed in a timely manner.
Solution: RPM and INTELLIscribe
IHS Systems selected RPM Remote Print Manager and INTELLIscribe because one vendor, Brooks Internet Software, could supply a total LPD and LPR spooling solution.
IHS Systems uses RPM to receive print jobs from mainframes over TCP/IP. RPM then saves the jobs to disk and IHS's software udkServe picks up the job data and converts the XES print commands to PCL. udkServe then calls INTELLIscribe using the ISendfile command line interface. ISendfile submits the converted print jobs to a virtual printer port via the MS-DOS prompt or command.
When sending print jobs via TCP/IP, LPR on its own was not adequate because there is no provision to retry if the initial transmission could not be processed by the printer. With INTELLIscribe's failover policy, jobs are rerouted to the next available printer if the initial printer is not available. Also, customers are now able to print to TCP/IP printers without the need of a print server.
Systems and Setup
Most customers receive print jobs from an IBM MVS mainframe. Customers generally prefer to load the combined solution (RPM, udkServe, and INTELLIscribe) on a server, but others have used workstations.
Using RPM and INTELLIscribe, IHS Systems and its customers have seen the following results:
- Customers have been able to replace outdated and expensive printers with faster, more common PCL printers. All this is done without having to change their mainframe application
- Many customers have been able to save significant amounts of money by migrating from expensive 3270 coax networks to existing printers on TCP/IP networks
- Customers now use INTELLIscribe's failover printing policy to ensure that print jobs are received and printed when the primary printer is not available
- User Feedback: "We have found the support to be outstanding! Customer suggestions are welcomed and often show up in future releases."
About the Customer
IHS Systems Corporation specializes in adapting print datastreams to the needs of customers. Experts in printer compatibility solutions, IHS offers solutions that save money and improve printing: its udk2pcl Print Converter converts XES to PCL for one printer and udkServe Print Conversion Software converts XES to PCL for many printers.