Chapter 11 - How to archive print jobs and/or print to multiple printers simultaneously

PRINTFIL can automatically archive a copy of each intercepted print job, in a directory of your choice, by declaring it in the ArchiveRoot optional setting (Please see Chapter 4).

For example, if ArchiveRoot=c:\archive\ , and Printfil is intercepting the c:\spool\printfil.txt file for printing, in addition to have it printed to the choosen Windows printer, the file will be also archived as c:\archive\printfil.txt.
The second printed job will be archived as c:\archive\printfil1.txt , then c:\archive\printfil2.txt and so on.

If the optional CFG file is present, it will be archived too, as c:\archive\printfil1.cfg , c:\archive\printfil2.cfg and so on.

You can also specify a prefix for the file name.
For example: ArchiveRoot=c:\archive\aaa . If the spool file is c:\spool\printfil.txt, it will be archived as c:\archive\aaaprintfil.txt

So, if you want to specify only a path, take care to insert a backslash ("\") at the end of the ArchiveRoot string, otherwise a simple c:\archive will result in the files: c:\archiveprintfil.txt , c:\archiveprintfil1.txt and so on.

You can also include environment variables to change the archiving path dinamically.
For example ArchiveRoot=[e:HOMEPATH]\archive\ , will make
Printfil archiving each user's jobs into a separate folder, as c:\document and settings\Administrator\archive\ or c:\document and settings\user\archive\ , depending by which user is currently running Printfil. 
This option is particularly useful on Windows Terminal Server environments, where a single Printfil installation manages different users, but you can also use it on other Windows versions and for different purposes.

Environment variables must be included in brackets and start with e:. For example: c:\dir\[e:ENV_VAR]\subdir\

If ArchiveRoot specifies a nonexistant path, the job will not be archived.

The more files are archived in the directory, the more time Printfil needs to find out which is the first available file name, so from time to time, the oldest archived jobs should be removed.
You can do it manually, by deleting them, or by moving them to another location, or by changing the ArchiveRoot entry. Alternatively, you can setup the ArchiveDelDays entry to automatically delete the archived files which are older than the specified number of days, at each Printfil startup.
Files older than "ArchiveDelDays" days will be shown on a screen grid first, so that the user can see them and choose to delete them all in once, or simply close the window.

For example, by setting up ArchiveDelDays=365, the ArchiveRoot folder will contain only the print jobs of the last year. If ArchiveDelDays=0, this option is disabled.

WARNING: The ArchiveDelDays parameter can potentially delete files on any disk folder.
Even though for security reasons Printfil deletes only files where the current Windows user has enough permissions to do so, be careful on choosing the ArchiveRoot path, to avoid deleting system files by mistake.

Once print jobs has been archived, they can be easily reprinted by the Redo Last Print - Archiving Printfil's menu entry.
Please note that the optional CFG file is archived too (please see Chapter 3.2), but if not present, or the standard Printfil configuration is changed in the meantime, the reprinted job might be slightly different than the original one (it will reflect the current Printfil settings, like margins etc.).

The ArchiveRoot entry can also be used to obtain your legacy jobs automatically printed to multiple printers in a single step.

To do so, you'll have to run multiple Printfil instances simultaneously on your machine, as described on Chapter 13.

For example, you may want to have the Invoices either printed on a Laser printer, or sent out via e-mail:

  1. Printfil is currently intercepting the LPT1 output and archiving the jobs into the c:\archive\c1 path.
  2. Another Printfil copy is setup to check for the c:\archive\c1*.txt files and (optionally) to archive them as c:\archive\c2.
  3. .....

As soon as a DOS or Windows application will print to LPT1, the first Printfil copy will send the job to the destination printer (say a laser printer) and will copy it into the c:\archive\c1printfil.txt file. The second Printfil copy will automatically pick up the archived file, will print it to another printer (say a PDF writer/emailer) , will (optionally) archive it as c:\archive\c2printfil.txt and so on.

  28 Jan 2016  
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