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LegEasy4DOS 1.4 and Printing PCL5 and Landscape.

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LegEasy4DOS 1.4 and Printing PCL5 and Landscape.

One of the news in the MLU update to LegEasy4DOS 1 - 1.4 - is that it now also support PCL5 (HP LaserJet) native.

You have always been able to use RAW mode to print directly to the printer but now you can use PCL5 formatting to print to PDFs etc, and to any other new printer that DFD don't have a printer definition and for printers that doesn't support RAW mode.

Configuration of Printers etc. in DFD is a "dark" and for many forgotten art form.

In L4D 1.0 we recommended Epson MX-80 as default printer and you can still use this but if you want a little more advanced printing, landscape etc. You might want to use HP PCL5.

1. Remember that your Workstation Configuration is copied from the Application Configuration the first time you start your Application with your current DENAME. So changing the Application Configuration has no effect on your workstation, only future workstations (dename). So ha "hack" to trigger all users to have new workstation configuration is to use PREFIX* on DENAME.

In my sample here I have a HP LaserJet printer set up o LPT1 and a CutePDF printer on LPT2. 

I could have used the same HP printer driver for both ports here as the clue is to get PCL formatting in DataEase while its sent to the ports 1 and 2 which are mapped to windows printer HP Laserjet (1) and CutePDF printer (2)

You can see that LPT1 is printed in RAW mode which simply means that L4D don't do any formatting/emulation but simply forward the ascii file as it is to the printer.

LP2 on the other hand is emulated and will be printed in Landscape which in DFD terms simply means 160 characters from side to side.

Setting LandScape here will not mean that the printout will be landscape. This is simply the formatting of the output 11x7.5 inches and 160 characters wide.

The next step is to configure your printer driver to print LandScape. If this is a feature you will use a lot, you can simply make a copy of your "normal" printer driver an pre-configure it to print in Landscape.

This dialogue will not come up if you have mapped the printer directly to the port so its important that you have pre-configured it for Landscape or it will print out in Portrait.

The emulation in L4D will simply calculate the size of the font so it fits between the margins so if you print 160 characters in portrait it will work but it will be very small characters.

As you can tell, this is layers of configuration and layers so the last thing you need to be aware of is how DFD calculate line change.

The algorithm in DFD is quite simple. It will calculate how many lines pr. ince you can get within page length and how many characters you can get left to right between the margins. So with 11 inches wide and 10cpi you will get a 110 before DFD force a carage return and you get this:

So if you want for instance 160 characters you can set 16 CPI (in emulation it doesn't even have to exist as a setting in the DFD driver as L4D emulatio will sort it). or you can simply make the width "fake" big and the result will be the same.

Remember that this is just when you run emulation. When you run RAW the printer commands will set LandScape,CPI, etc.

Written by DataEase 26/01/19 at 21:39:58 LegEasy DOS