ThinPrint prints with its own printer ports (ThinPrint Ports) which will be automatically created during installation. Thus, ThinPrint does not affect printing with conventional printer ports, such as Standard TCP/IP Ports.
This chapter describes configuration of the ThinPrint Engine with special attention to adding ThinPrint Ports and adapting them to specific requirements for print job transmission. The Port Manager offers the following options for ThinPrint Ports:
- Add a ThinPrint Port – local and remote
- Configure a ThinPrint Port – local and remote
- Delete a ThinPrint Port – local and remote
- Send port configuration to other Windows machines on which a ThinPrint Engine is installed
- Export and import port properties
- Encryption settings
Starting Port Manager
- Open the ThinPrint Configuration console.
- In case of remote configuration: In the ThinPrint node, click Add and specify the computer address.
Creating ThinPrint Ports
To create new ports use the buttons New ThinPrint Port or New ThinPrint Connection Service Port in Port Managers menu bar. Choose the port settings: port type (protocol) and bandwidth and (optional) encryption.
Note!In principle, there is no limit to the length of printer port names. Some old applications, however, only support port names with a length of four or six characters; if longer port names are used, this could cause problems (printer is not visible in the application, etc.).
Pool not more than 20 to 25 ports because each printer of a pool must be assigned to all ports. Because of Windows restrictions the general rule is:
Length of port name x Number of ports < 200
Connnecting printers to ThinPrint Ports
ThinPrint Ports each consist of a pair of two printer ports:
- a classic ThinPrint Port ‒ in the following screenshot for example with the denominations ThinPort: or ThinPort6:
- a v4 driver port ‒ in the following screenshot with the denominations \\.\pipe\TPv4_ThinPort: or \.\pipe\TPv4_ThinPort6:
Printer objects that use ether a native v3 printer driver or the TP Output Gateway are connected to the classic ThinPrint Ports ‒ in the following screenshot the printer object HP Color LaserJet MFP#192.168.149.51:1
In contrast, printer objects that use a native v4 printer driver are connected to the v4 driver port ‒ in the following screenshot the printer object Lexmark XV544#server002:5
Note: The pairs of printer ports introduced with ThinPrint version 13 ‒ consisting of a classic ThinPrint port and a v4 driver port ‒ allows ThinPrint to use both v3 and v4 printer drivers (aka type-3 and type-4 printer drivers, respectively). This linking of pairs of printer ports is ensured by the ThinPrint Transport Service (TPTransport).
- To configure ports, select ThinPrint→ ThinPrint Engine→ Port Manager.
In Print Management, you can view whether the native drivers you are using are Type 3 or Type 4 drivers (or v3 or v4 drivers respectively).
- If you receive the following error message, you probably tried to connect a type 4 driver to a classic ThinPrint Port. Instead, select the associated v4 port (whose name starts with \\.\pipe\TPv4_).
Configuring ThinPrint Ports
- Double clicking a port name will open the port configuration.
|Use encryption||Enables encryption; a valid and corresponding certificate must be available for both ThinPrint Engine and ThinPrint Client machine (not for LPD; see also Encryption of print data).|
|Bandwidth control||• Enable: Bandwidth control on
• Max. bandwidth available for printing with ThinPrint; minimum: 1 kbit/s, default: unlimited
|Print protocol||• TCP/IP (Sockets)
• Use Virtual Channel Gateway (Print data will be sent to the remote desktop and then sent via RDP, ICA or PCoIP with the Virtual Channel Gateway installed there)
• LPD (Unix print protocol LPR/LPD)
• Virtual Channel Protocol (ICA/RDP) as well as PCoIP
This function is not relevant here. It’s intended for direct printing from remote desktops.
|Minimum print data volume||• Enabled: always highest compression
• Disabled: transfer rate optimized compression – depends on bandwidth settings
You can also select the TCP port (default: 4000) for TCP/IP (Sockets) and Use Virtual Channel Gateway print protocols (see the table above). With TCP/IP (Sockets), the TCP port numbers of the ThinPrint Clients (see Advanced tab) must be the same as those of the ThinPrint Ports. With Use Virtual Channel Gateway the TCP port numbers of the Virtual Channel Gateway(s) must be the same as those of the ThinPrint Ports.
Under Advanced, you have the following options:
Client control: Bandwidth
If this option is enabled, each user can set her / his own bandwidth value (in the ThinPrint Client Manager).
Client bandwidth settings must be lower than server-side settings; otherwise, ThinPrint Port settings are applied.
Connection retries (TCP/IP and LPD only)
Enter the number of times ThinPrint Engine should attempt to establish a connection to the client.
Net Send Service
Net Send Service is used to notify users if ThinPrint experiences print errors. If this box is checked (= default), ThinPrint Engine will send error messages to the relevant account.
Note: This function can become irksome if several users are logged on using the same account.
You can select for each ThinPrint Port whether the address information is at the beginning or the end of the printer name. Examples:
|Default addressing||Reversed addressing|
Lexmark T620 PS3#192.168.1.100
Lexmark T620 PS3#192.168.1.100:1
HP LaserJet 1200 PCL#client1
HP LaserJet 1200 PCL#client1:2
recommended: Lexmark T620 PS3#client1:2
192.168.1.100#Lexmark T620 PS3
192.168.1.100:1#Lexmark T620 PS3
client1#HP LaserJet 1200 PCL
client1:2#HP LaserJet 1200 PCL
|Use Virtual Channel Gateway
HP LaserJet 1200 PCL#
Lexmark T620 PS3#:1
recommended: HP LaserJet 1200 PCL
HP LaserJet 1200 PCL
:1#Lexmark T620 PS3
HP PhotoSmart P1000#192.168.1.101
HP PhotoSmart P1000#printer3
recommended: HP PhotoSmart P1000#printer3
192.168.1.101#HP PhotoSmart P1000
printer3#HP PhotoSmart P1000
Job Statistics tab
Print statistics can be activated per ThinPrint Port.
- Select the relevant ThinPrint Port; click Properties→ Job statistics and then High (every second), Normal (every 10 seconds), Low (every 30 seconds), No update, or Statistics off (default) under Update speed.
Note! Use this function only part-time, as it may affect print performance. See also ThinPrint Tracking.
- Save your settings by clicking OK or Apply.
Distributing port configuration
The following strategies are available for creating the same configuration for ThinPrint Ports on multiple servers:
- Remote configuration of ThinPrint Ports (Starting Port Manager)
- Copying port properties with Copy&Paste (see below)
- Export to an .xml file and import to target servers (see below)
- Sending port configuration to target servers (see below)
- Open the ThinPrint Engine configuration console (Starting Port Manager).
- Mark a port in a server’s Port Manager and select Copy from the context menu
- Mark the Port Manager of a target server and select Paste from the context menu.
The following export and import functions are available:
|Export Port Configuration||Exports the selected ThinPrint Port to an .xml file|
|Import/Export→ Export Port Configuration||Exports all ThinPrint Ports to an .xml file if no port is selected|
|Import/Export→ Import Port Configuration||Imports ThinPrint Ports from an .xml file|
Sending port configuration
The Send Port Configuration function sends ThinPrint Ports to other servers or server groups. There are various modes:
|Send Port Configuration (Overwrite)||Sends the selected ThinPrint Port; a port with the same name on the target system will be overwritten|
|Send Port Configuration (Add Only)||Sends the selected ThinPrint Port; a port with the same name on the target system will not be overwritten|
|Import/Export→ Send Port Configuration (Overwrite)||Send all ThinPrint Ports; ports with the same name on the target system will be overwritten|
|Import/Export→ Send Port Configuration (Add Only)||Send all ThinPrint Ports; ports with the same name on the target system will not be overwritten|
ThinPrint Ports that already exist on the target computer, but not on the sending computer remain unchanged.
Procedure when sending
- Selecting the send option will open the dialog.
- To improve clarity, first select Object Types, and disable Groups. Click OK to confirm.
- Select Advanced and then Find Now.
- Mark all target servers and click OK to confirm.
Caution! You are influencing the configuration of remote computers. Check once more that you really want to send the configured ThinPrint Ports to the selected servers. A confirmation prompt gives you the option to cancel the process.
Note! If you receive an error message when sending, create a connection to the target computer with the MMC, using the relevant ThinPrint Engine node for remote configuration (Starting Port Manager) and repeat the send process from the source computer while keeping the console open.
There’s one last step after installing and configuring the ThinPrint Engine: setting up printers on the ThinPrint Ports.
If you are working with several ThinPrint Ports, each with a different protocol, then check port configuration before printer installation to see which ThinPrint Port supports which protocol.
ThinPrint naming conventions
Please also refer to the following information when adding printers to the server manually (without Management Services).
For simplicity’s sake, only standard addressing is considered here; reversed addressing can be found in the chart in Naming convention, and addressing ThinPrint Connection Service Ports is explained in detail in ThinPrint Connection Service. On this, see also the section Address information in the Registry (below).
It is irrelevant to a ThinPrint printer name whether the object represents a traditional (native) printer driver or the Output Gateway “printer driver”. The ThinPrint printer name is composed according to the network protocol in use:
|Network protocol||names of printer objects|
Example: Kyocera FS-850#client1:3
Example: Kyocera FS-850#188.8.131.52:3
|Use Virtual Channel Gateway (RDP/ICA/PCoIP)||Either: printer_name#user_name:printer_ID
Example: Kyocera FS-850#administrator:3
Example: Kyocera FS-850#:3
Example: Kyocera FS-850#printer1
Example: Kyocera FS-850#184.108.40.206
Client name with TCP/IP and LPD means the real name of the client in the network (= host name). Alternatively, the client’s IP address can be used; this is especially necessary when there are difficulties with the name resolution.
Note! With TCP/IP it is possible to send print data to any client computer running a ThinPrint Client – independent of a remote desktop session.
At the client (i. e., a workstation, a thin client or terminal, a ThinPrint Hub, an SEH printserver ONE or a local print server), the ThinPrint Client automatically assigns every installed printer an ID. The printer_ID can be omitted if
- there is only one printer installed on the client
- printing should take place on the ThinPrint Client’s current printer
- if, firstly, all the print jobs are sent via Virtual Channel Gateway and, secondly, the share name entered in Dynamic Printer Matrix’ Target Printer column and the printer name on the client machine match (= if the variable %LCPRN% can be used in the Target Printer column).
The printer name can be anything you like. It is nonetheless recommended that it is the same as the printer name at the client machine.
ThinPrint Client assigned this printer ID 2
Lexmark T644 # client1:2
Lexmark T644 # 192.168.1.17:2
Print protocol ICA, RDP or PCoIP
With the Use Virtual Channel Gateway protocol type, it is possible to print from print servers via RDP, ICA or PCoIP. Print jobs are then sent via TCP/IP from the ThinPrint Engine installed on the print server to the Virtual Channel Gateway on the remote desktop and from there via RDP, ICA or PCoIP to the client. The naming convention for the printers on the print server is the same as for RDP, ICA or PCoIP.
The RDP, ICA and PCoIP protocol assumes all communication with the client, including the client’s unambiguous identification. The printer name is composed of:
Description of the Printer and the Printer ID
Example: Kyocera FS-850 is to be printed via ThinPrint using RDP. If multiple printers are installed and ID 3 was assigned to the printer by the ThinPrint Client, the printer name could be: Kyocera#:3 (# before :) or Kyocera FS-850#_:3 (underline before :) If Kyocera FS-850 is ThinPrint Client’s Current Printer or the Dynamic Printer Matrix is in use (and share name and client printer name match), this name is sufficient: Kyocera FS-850
Note! With the RDP, ICA or PCoIP protocol print data is sent automatically to the client from whose session the print data was created.
Address information in the Registry
If you use unique printer names in your print environment, you can alternatively store the address information in the Windows registry. To do this, write the address of the ThinPrint Client to:
and the printer ID to:
Pooling printer ports with ThinPrint means you can attach printer objects to several ThinPrint Ports – also known as printer pooling. This has the following advantages:
- Improved performance
- Little chance of blockage from very large or “hanging” print jobs
- Fewer printer ports on the server (because multiple printers can be connected to a few ports)
- Bandwidth limitation is more clearly defined
ThinPrint Port pooling is supported by:
- ThinPrint Ports including v4 driver ports
- ThinPrint Output Gateway
- Virtual Channel Gateway
- Connection Service
- ThinPrint Management Services
Port pooling is mainly used to improve print performance. It should be remembered though, that all ThinPrint Ports in a pool should have the same settings – this can be done automatically using the Management Services. Port pooling with ThinPrint Ports in combination with Output Gateways, Management Services and AutoConnect, however, brings more than maximum performance; it also makes administration particularly easy and convenient.
When setting bandwidth, note that the bandwidths of a pool are added to each other when all ThinPrint Ports print simultaneously.
With the installation of the ThinPrint Engine, a port pool is installed that contains the ThinPrint Ports ThinPort1: to ThinPort5:. This allows ‒ with all printers connected to it ‒ five print jobs to take place simultaneously.