Using RPM in the cloud

We are asked from time to time whether RPM Remote Print ManagerĀ® ("RPM") runs in the cloud.

The answer is that "RPM runs on Windows." However, we have customers who have safely migrated their RPM installation to a cloud such as Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure.

The two types of cloud deployment we are familiar with are:

  1. run hundreds of instances of your application when needed, and shut them down when demand drops off
  2. run your application in an environment with static resources, equivalent to a virtual machine

RPM has been running in a backend server environment for decades. It heavily depends on finding a database path, configuration files, folder for spooling jobs, etc. These features describe a traditional hardware environment for any operating system

Virtual machines also can fit this requirement.

The secret to successfully deploying RPM in the cloud is to treat it like RPM is running on a virtual machine.

The secret to successfully deploying RPM in the cloud is to treat it like it's running on a virtual machine.

RPM requires a consistent MAC address

Like many other software packages, RPM uses the MAC address in the computer's network card to determine its license status. If RPM runs in an environment where the MAC address is not the same as the last time it ran, RPM will reset the license.

We can help you move that license to the cloud

One of our most frequent requests for help comes from IT staff who have moved RPM to a new virtual machine, only to find the license is no longer activated. We have a migration document that explains what you need to do.

Notes on printing

We are aware of two situations regarding physical printers.

First, you may want RPM to send jobs to printers back in your local network from the cloud. We know it is possible to make your internal system visible to the cloud.

However, we have no idea how to do this. Networking is your responsibility. RPM does not do anything to access the network differently than any other application. It all comes down to your configuration and troubleshooting skills.

We can offer this advice: if it makes a difference to access your local network from a logged-in user versus a system service, RPM can handle print operations as a credentialed user. It is best to run RPM as a Windows service and configure your devices or actions to use credentials.

The second situation regarding printers is that you may want to configure an LPR port on your local printer to send jobs to RPM. So long as the host running RPM in the cloud is visible from your network, you should be able to configure the LPR port using that hostname or IP address. Again, you are responsible for the network setup. RPM listens on the network exactly as any other network application would.