Technical support memos


May 7, 1997 (updated 10/1/98)
Printing direct (pre-printed forms, items less than 8 ½ x 11)
ADV 5.1 and TAS 5.1 (Windows mode)
Anthony J. Frates (Copyright 1998 Addsum Business Software, Inc.)

When printing to pre-printed forms (invoices, statements, purchase orders, checks, etc.) or to any form that is less than page length (labels, COD tags, dot matrix style checks, etc.), printing through the Windows print drivers may produce less than desirable print output and may not print correctly without custom programming.

An available solution is to use the "print direct" feature. Printing direct still uses WIN95 print spooling and "interfaces" with your Windows printer settings but bypasses the graphical Windows print drivers.

To set-up the print direct feature, first you must sent the spool data format to RAW for each printer that you will be printing direct to. This can be accomplished as follows on each workstation:

  1. Click on START
  2. Move cursor to Settings and then click on Printers
  3. Double click on the icon for the appropriate printer
  4. Click on the Printer menu option
  5. Click on Properties.
  6. Click on the Details tab
  7. Click on the Spool Settings button at the bottom of the window
  8. Click on the arrow in the spool data format field – choose RAW
  9. Click on the OK button
  10. Click on the Apply button
  11. Close the window

Once this has been done, in Advanced Accounting (or TAS Pro), go to Utilities, Maintain INI file. Select F3 Printers and be sure to select the printer in the printer dialog box (it may or may not be the "default" printer – you may need to click on specific printer to bring up the appropriate printer) that you set to RAW in the steps above to Direct=Y and complete the other settings. Save this by selecting F10, click on ‘Yes’ and click on F10 again on the prior screen. Exit completely out of Advanced Accounting or TAS Pro.

Note that you need to do the foregoing for EACH AND EVERY printer that you wish to print direct to and for each and every workstation that you will be printing direct to.

As noted, you will continue to use the WIN95 spooler, there is no limit to the number of printers you can set-up and you will be able to print to network printers. You will obviously not however be able to print direct to a printer that you contact use in DOS. Many printers today (the Brother HL-720 for example) can only be printed to from a Windows application. Printing direct will not work for those printers which would include postscript printers and multi-function fax/printers. When printing however to a dot matrix printer (most commonly used to print to pre-printed forms, checks, etc.) printing direct should solve alignment and page break problems.

If unable to print from WIN95, ensure that the correct printer driver is installed for the printer. Note too that there may be multiple drivers for the same printer (Okidata is a good example - don't guess when choosing the IBM mode). In some cases you may need to install a standard/generic driver rather than one that matches the brand name of the printer.

In connection with a Brother HL-1040, a user was having difficulty getting the printer to work correctly in the Windows "mode" when printing direct. The user uninstalled the Brother driver and used instead the HP Laserjet series II driver that comes with WIN95. The user's printing difficulties then disappeared. When using lower end laser printers in general, the HP Laserjet series II driver may provide more reliable performance with Advanced Accounting.

Copyright ã 1997-8 ADDSUM BUSINESS SOFTWARE, INC. Salt Lake City, Utah
ADDSUM is a registered service mark of Addsum Business Software, Inc.
Advanced Accounting and TAS are trademarks of Business Tools, Inc.
Technical support phone number: 801-277-9240