Technical support memos


April 1, 1998 (updated 5/4/98, 10/1/98, 4/28/99,11/16/04)
Compatible printers
Advanced Accounting 5.1, TAS Professional 5.1 and prior (does not apply to newer versions)
Anthony J. Frates (Copyright 1998-2004 Addsum Business Software, Inc.)


We are sometimes asked what printers are compatible with Advanced Accounting. In general, any printer that supports Epson or HP II printer emulation and that can print directly to an LPT port (for the DOS mode) is compatible. This technical support memo will however outline some of the printer related problems that we have encountered based on user experiences and in-house testing.

Printers that require Windows printer drivers - When buying a new/used printer, be sure to ask whether the printer can print from "DOS" applications. If it can't, you will not be able to print anything to it from the "DOS mode" of Advanced Accounting 5.1 (nor any prior version of Advanced Accounting or TAS). You should still be able to print to it using the "Windows mode" of Advanced Accounting but on some printers you may find that compressed print is difficult to read. An example of a printer that requires a Windows print driver is the Brother HL-720. This is an excellent printer but you cannot print to it from DOS without an update. The Brother HL-730 can print from a DOS application. (In general, Brother printers are highly recommended. We have tested the HL-720 and HL-730 models extensively which are 6ppm printers. The HL-1040/1050 available since at least 9/98 at 10ppm is perhaps one of the most economical/powerful laser printers available and is reported to produce excellent results with Advanced Accounting.)

All-in-one/multi-function printers - As a general rule, our recommendation is to stay away from this category of printer. Business users would generally be better served by purchasing inexpensive dedicated fax machines and a separate relatively equally inexpensive dedicated printer. Multi-function printers generally require Windows print drivers and may have other requirements or limitations. A specific example is the HP LaserJet 3100 which is not recommended.

Printers that cannot be networked - Some printers, especially multi-function printers like the Canon Multipass 2500, cannot work across a network. If you want to use your printer across a network, make sure that it can (most printers can but some printers like the Canon Multipass require a direct connection to the PC from which print output is sent and therefore cannot be networked).

HP6 - at least the initial version of this printer simply doesn't work correctly with DOS applications (especially in dealing with compressed print). If you intend to use the "DOS mode" of Advanced Accounting 5.1 or any prior version of Advanced Accounting or TAS, do NOT buy this printer. Because of problems experienced by users in general we do not recommend the HP6 series. Historically, however, HP lasers are a safe purchase (but beware of "all-in-one" or multi-function printers and be sure to ask whether the printer can print to an LPT port).

Panasonic dot matrix/lasers - These are in wide use by customers however we've had a number of circumstances involving Panasonic lasers that required special adjustments to get the printer to work correctly.

Lexmark printers - Users have found these difficult to work with, particularly with custom length forms.

Bubblejets/Inkjets/Deskjets - Many users successfully use these printers but they often prove troublesome requiring special adjustments for compressed printing and page layouts. As a general rule we do not recommend them but if you already have one, by all means use it. In-house we do use HP Deskjets but they required special set-up to get them to work correctly in the 5.1 and prior versions.

Dot matrix printers - As a general rule, users do not experience problems with this class of printer. Okidata printers are commonly used. However recognize that when printing in "Windows mode" that printing can be much slower - to print, for example, a 50 page detailed trial balance to a dot matrix printer in Windows mode will be painfully slow. The "Windows mode" works best with laser printers.

Serial printers - There is no support in the DOS mode for serial printers. Serial printers can be used however in the Windows mode. The Windows print driver however may deliver slow printing results. Printing direct can be effective (be sure to complete all settings in the printer set-up including the printer driver name, page length, etc.)

Bar code/label/receipt printers - The POS module is generally compatible with most 40 or 80 column receipt printers. Advanced Accounting can be interfaced with bar code printers as long as the bar code printer can directly accept printer strings or programming commands. We have interfaced the C.Itoh EZ-2 Plus bar code label printer, the Epson TM-T88 bar code/receipt printer and the BarCode Blazer through custom programming; bar coded labels can be printed on demand and/or automatically upon the receipt of purchase orders or anywhere else in the system.

EPP printer ports and bidirectional printing can also create printing problems when printing in the 5.1/DOS mode. The solution is to change to a standard LPT port.

We will periodically update this tech support memo as new information becomes available in connection with these or other printers.

Copyright ã 1998-9 ADDSUM BUSINESS SOFTWARE, INC. Salt Lake City, Utah
ADDSUM is a registered service mark of Addsum Business Software, Inc.
Advanced Accounting is a trademark of Business Tools, Inc.
Technical support phone number: 801-277-9240