Archive

Archive for February 6, 2014

Deploying Canon print drivers with printer setups via Casper’s Self Service

February 6, 2014 4 comments

In my shop, we use a number of Canon ImageRunner printers and have them set up in Casper’s Self Service so that our users can set them up themselves. All of the Canon printers in question have PostScript enabled, so I’ve been deploying the Canon PostScript drivers.

Historically, one of the things that was installed along with the drivers was a proprietary printing application that sat between the Mac’s CUPS printing system and the actual printer. That changed with the release of Canon’s 4.x PostScript drivers. With the new drivers, Canon has switched to using LPR and no longer uses that proprietary printing application.

Good news: Canon is no longer building in a custom printer program to handle talking to the printer; instead the new drivers are using LPR.

Bad news: Our existing printer setups that are available in Self Service do not work with the new printer drivers. I would need to delete and re-add our various printers to Self Service.

The bad news wasn’t a big problem by itself, but my testing showed that updating the printers in Self Service to accommodate the new printer drivers would make them no longer backwards-compatible with the old drivers. The new drivers would need to be installed in order for the new printers to work. Conversely, just pushing out the new drivers to our Macs could result in existing printer setups breaking.

In short, here were the problems I was looking at:

1. The old printer setups could not use the new drivers

2. The new printer setups could not use the old drivers

3. The new drivers needed to be installed before the new printer setup happened.

4. I didn’t want to break existing printer setups if I could avoid it.

Making the new drivers available in Self Service as standalone installers wasn’t an issue but I was concerned about adding them to the printer setups themselves. That potentially could result in the printer drivers being installed over and over again as people set up multiple printers on one Mac. I also wanted to avoid problems with accidentally trying to overwrite newer drivers, in the event that Canon released new drivers and someone installed them before I updated the driver installer in Self Service.

For details on how I addressed this, see below the jump.

Read more…

%d bloggers like this: