In large environments, losing an overview of the printers can sometimes occur – particularly if these are distributed among many branch offices. Printers may be replaced, not immediately available, or such information reaches the central office too late or not at all. The Management Services have been developed to simplify and automate this process.
The most important job of the Management Services is to create the required printers on print servers or workstations running Windows – connected to Standard TCP/IP or LPR Ports as well as printers connected to ThinPrint Ports. This could be laborious and only be accomplished manually – aside from the fact that the replacement of a printer in a remote office is not always known of immediately. Using a PowerShell script printers with their ports are automatically created on the target machines.
The printer objects created by the Management Services are automatically shared and can be made available to specific user groups in a company – regardless of whether their applications are running on virtual or real desktops, Remote Desktop Session Hosts (= Windows terminal servers) or other systems such as Linux, SAP-R/3, or System i hosts.
Furthermore, the Management Services automate the printer configuration by defining printer objects as templates. The properties of these templates can be assigned automatically to any printer object created by the Management Services. Additionally, ThinPrint settings such as bandwidth control, port pooling, Driver Free Printing and V-Layer can be assigned.
Configuring the V-Layer is especially convenient. This enables Driver Free Printing from RD Session Hosts, virtual desktops or workstations to non-Windows devices such as terminals (thin clients), network printers or gateway appliances (like ThinPrint Hub).
In general, the ThinPrint Management Services (Tpms) consists of three components:
- a central component called Tpms.Service
- a PowerShell component called Tpms.Powershell
- a target machine component called Tpms.Agent
Tpms.Powershell sends PowerShell commands to the Tpms.Service which delivers these commands to the relevant agents. The Tpms.Agents execute the commands locally and – if necessary – communicate with the two ThinPrint components, ThinPrint Client and ThinPrint Engine.
While the ThinPrint Engines are only installed on the central print servers, the ThinPrint Clients can be located on the one hand on local print servers or gateway devices or appliances and on the other hand also on workstations, thin clients, or network printers. Thus, when planning your print environment, you have to decide which pathway your print jobs will take. You can print from a central print server via the pathways below:
- via Microsoft’s Standard TCP/IP protocol directly to network printers
- via the classic LPR/LPD protocol directly to network printers, local print servers, workstations or thin clients
- via the ThinPrint TCP/IP protocol to ThinPrint Clients installed on network printers, local print servers, ThinPrint gateway appliances, workstations or thin clients
- via one of the session protocols ICA, RDP or PCoIP to ThinPrint Clients installed on workstations or thin clients that initiated the print job, whereby the central print server sends the print jobs via terminal server or RD Session Host or a virtual or real desktop to the target machine