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Thread: Printing custom form - Alpha4v8 on XP Virtual Machine

  1. #1
    Real Name
    Sally Hartford
    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    Default Printing custom form - Alpha4v8 on XP Virtual Machine

    I'm hoping someone can help me out with a printing problem. Here's the details:
    Win 7 Professional host machine
    XP SP2 virtual machine (vmware)
    Alpha 4V8
    Printing 8-1/2x7 continuous feed, 4 part form to an Epson LQ-590
    I have set up a custom paper size in the Server Properties in both the host and the virtual machine
    The printer is loaded in the host machine , using the USB port, attached to a print spooler to give it an IP address. Using TCP/IP printer port with assigned IP addrs. Driver 'Epson LQ-590 ESC/P 2 Ver. 2.0'
    The virtual machine is using port: TPVM 'Thinprint print port for VMWare'

    When I print my report in Alpha4v8, and I say 'standard page length' it will print multiple invoices on 8-1/2x11 paper. But when I change the report to say 'no' on standard page length, and set my page length to 42 lines, I only get the first invoice and then printing stops.
    Other report parameters:
    Page breaks 'yes'
    reset page no. after group 'no' (but have tried both yes and no, with same results)
    Reprint group header after Pg break 'Yes'

    I have also tried printing to a networked HP, and get the same results, so this is not exclusive of the Epson.

    I have also tried printing in notepad to the Epson printer, and chosen the custom page size. It prints correctly in notepad in both the host Win 7 machine, and the XP virtual machine. So I know windows can properly tell it what size paper to use.

    My suspicion is that it's something stupid in Alpha4v8 that I'm missing.

    I've been working on this issue for 6 weeks, and am getting desperate to fix it and move on. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Real Name
    Alan Tattersall
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Default Re: Printing custom form - Alpha4v8 on XP Virtual Machine

    Hi, I know this doesn't answer your question, nor am I sure this works with VMWARE, but I'm running Alpha4 in XP mode under Windows 7 and, from the beginning I decided to use XPS for all printing. That is, all my A4 printers under XP are defined as XPS printers. When I print from A4 it through up a window that lets me choose where to file the print. I've chosen by default a folder that is under Windows 7. I then just print from Windows 7. This may seem a little more clumsy but there are some side benefits. Firstly, you can choose NOT to print a report if there’s something wrong with it or if you can glean the information you really need by simply viewing the file. So there is a potential paper saving. Secondly, it means you can print the report on any printer you want, rather than on the printer(s) assigned to A4. Thirdly, you no longer need to use the re-start facilities provided by the A4 application in case of printer jam or malfunction. Fourthly, and provided that you give the print files meaningful names at the time you print them, you can keep these files for a while (days, weeks even months if you wish). So, if a need arises at a later time to produce another copy of a certain report, this can be done without worrying about how to make the A4 application retrospectively do this.
    You do have to install XPS in the XP machine but I didn't find this to be any problem. Hope this helps

  3. #3
    Real Name
    Sally Hartford
    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    Default Re: Printing custom form - Alpha4v8 on XP Virtual Machine

    I wanted to post an update, in case someone else is struggling with the same problem. I believe my problem comes down to the windows driver that I was using. For other reasons not related to this post, I purchased a new, network capable, dot matrix. Okidata ML420. Initially, I had the same issues with this printer as I previously posted with the Epson. The ML420 driver would not allow me to see my custom paper size that I had created under Server Properties. I ended up using the ML421 driver (same printer, just wider carriage) and that allowed me to see the custom sheet. I did all of this set up in my Win 7 host machine.

    In my VMWare XP virtual machine, the software continues to use the TPVM 'Thinprint print port for VMWare'
    In Alpha 4, I set my printer parameters to standard page length, and voila! I can print continuous invoices on my custom paper size.

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