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Send printer control codes

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  • Send printer control codes


    I had the occasion to need to send control codes to a printer/cash drawer from within A5. I wrote a small exe that accepts command line paramaters that can be called with sys_shell(). I thought this might be of use to some of you out there. I named the file SendStr.exe. It accepts numerical parameter on the command line. By entering SendStr on the command line by itself the program will print to screen a short list of instructions.

    The first parameter must be a number between 1 & 4 inclusive. 1 represents lpt1, 2 represents lpt2, 3 represents com1 and 4 represents com2. Each parameter after that must be the decimal representation of the ascii character you wish to send to the device, usually a printer. For instance, to send the string 'JIM' to a printer on lpt1, followed by a form feed:

    sendstr 1 74 73 77 12

    1 denotes output to lpt1, 74, 73, 77 are the decimal codes for J,I,M respectively, and 12 is the ascii code for a form feed.

    Each parameter needs only to be seperated by a space. From within A5, assuming the sendstr.exe is in the root directory of the c: drive, the following should work:

    sys_shell("c:sendstr.exe 1 74 73 77 12", 2)

    This should make it easy to send control characters to printers from within A5. Feel free to use this as you wish, but as a word of caution, this is just written and untested. I didn't do any bounds checking except for the first parameter, and I haven't checked it with anything except a printer on lpt1.

    Hope it helps,

    Jim Chapman

  • #2
    RE: Send printer control codes

    Thanks for the tip on printer control codes for A5. I wonder if you do have a chance to test this if you wouldn't mind dropping a note regarding your success and any corrections. I'll certainly be glad to do the same. Thanks again.


    • #3
      RE: Send printer control codes

      If anyone does any testing out there, I am wondering if this could be used to send data to a "pole display" in an invoicing application....the amount due would be sent to the display on say com2, and the "open drawer" code could be sent to the cash drawer on com1....would make a great POS tool. Often customers misunderstand the amount due when only verbally given by the salesperson.


      • #4
        RE: Send printer control codes

        I belive the pole uses serial ports so this program will no work However I used a program called WinWedge and it works good.


        • #5
          RE: Send printer control codes

          Hello Michael,

          >>I belive the pole uses serial ports so this program will no work However I used a program called WinWedge and it works good<<

          I designed this program to be able to send to lpt1, lpt2, com1 and com2, so as long as the pole is on com1 or com2 it should work. This utility is 16 bit and will probably not run on winNT or win2000. I've written an updated version that should run on these platforms as well, but, as before, I haven't done much testing yet, but appears to work just fine. I will post it if there's any interest.

          Jim Chapman


          • #6
            RE: Send printer control codes


            I would be interested in the 32bit version of sendstr.exe if you still have it available. I am writing a POS app for a customer who is using win2000 machines. Would you be able to post it and/or email it to me?


            • #7
              RE: Send printer control codes

              To All,

              Attached is a 32 bit version of my send string utility.



              • #8
                RE: Send printer control codes

                I assume that the parameters are the same as the 16-bit version?????


                • #9
                  RE: Send printer control codes

                  Hello Mike,

                  Yes, all parameters are the same.



                  • #10
                    RE: Send printer control codes


                    Any possibility of having something to receive data through the printer/com ports?



                    • #11
                      Re: Send printer control codes

                      Hi Jim... i would like to leave here my
                      sincere Thank You
                      for making that tool.

                      Its working quite well temporarily with controling a epson printer
                      that has no LF buttons...

                      older ESC/P2 printer (Epson stylus 1000) is disabled because no ink found to makit work.

                      so i am controling a Epson stylus Color 1290 by LPT1 with the remaning ESC codes that it suports.

                      the ESC codes i took of a PDF file found on a .ru site

                      Here is what i am using:

                      Advances n/216 (??) of a inch

                      sendstr 1 27 74 n

                      n = 0 ~ 255

                      Advances 1/2 of a A4 portrait page

                      sendstr 1 27 74 255
                      sendstr 1 27 74 255
                      sendstr 1 27 74 255
                      sendstr 1 27 74 255

                      Line Feed

                      sendstr 1 13 10

                      1 = LPT1
                      13 = CR
                      10 = LF

                      Select Condensed (not used/ not tested)

                      sendstr 1 15
                      1 = LPT1
                      15 = Condensed


                      sendstr 1 12
                      1 = LPT1
                      12 = FF

                      Load Paper (this one didn work)

                      sendstr 1 27 25 n

                      1 = LPT1
                      27 25 = load/eject
                      n = 49 = load from bin 1 of cut sheet feeder




                      • #12
                        Re: Send printer control codes

                        Jim, I am looking for a pure dos version of sendstr.exe. Is there one?