Technology Highlights uniFLOW
November 2016 | Technology Highlights

One Driver for the Entire Printing Fleet

Output Management Solutions help to reduce costs when the right Technology is in Place

Implementing an output management system as part of a business’ printing infrastructure might initially cause some concern as there could be a fear that such a solution is too costly to purchase, implement and maintain. It could also have a negative effect on business processes which are actually working satisfactorily already so changing the system appears to be unnecessary.

uniFLOW will take away all these concerns. As a modular platform with leading technologies, uniFLOW will reduce costs and waste while simultaneously improving security and user efficiency.

There are two major functions of an output management system which enable secure printing to any device (“pull print”) and selection of the most suitable device (”job routing”). IT departments might suggest that the fact that their business has a large range of printer types, from one or more manufacturers will make integration impossible because they all need separate drivers. If they are not setup properly incompatibility between printing devices and their drivers often leads to incorrectly printed documents or, worse, no printout at all. Such difficulties make implementation only possible if some features are sacrificed so it is difficult to overcome these problems.

One Driver for the Entire Print Fleet

The uniFLOW Universal Driver can manage a mixed fleet printer network and ensure printouts will be delivered where, when and in what format they have been requested, regardless of make or model of the device.

Only uniFLOW offers a straightforward and proven technology to move jobs from one device to another in either a secure pull printing or job routing system. On Canon devices, the user also has the capability of changing job finishing options at the device before the job is released, saving valuable time and avoiding resubmission of print jobs.

uniFLOW is comprised of two different “universal drivers”, one for PostScript and one for PCL/XL, allowing administrators to select the correct one for their environment, prior to the implementation.

The uniFLOW Universal Driver for PostScript enables printing in mixed environments and enables routing from PostScript to PCL5 printers. For secure printing, a thumbnail preview of the first page of the print job is available. This extra feature requires at least one Job Conversion Instance (JCI) to be available. The uniFLOW Universal Driver for PostScript utilizes genuine Adobe PostScript.

For purely PCL environments, the uniFLOW Universal Driver PCL6 (PCL/XL) driver can be used. This driver requires the data format for both the input and output to be PCL. The advantage of this driver is that no conversion is required, resulting in faster and less expensive job processing.

Unique Technology supporting IT and users

The patented uniFLOW Universal Driver is unique. It stands out from other output management providers thanks to true automated routing of print jobs i.e. printer specific control codes are only added to the spool file once the make and model of device the job is being released to is known. The correct information is added to the print job once the user has authenticated at that device. Utilizing this method delivers correct output as required by the user.

uniFLOW can import manufacturers’ specific printer drivers and map the codes to the options available. The options are shown to the user in the uniFLOW Universal Driver when submitting the print job. The specific driver information is stored in a uniFLOW Device Information File (DIF file). DIF files are already available for 95% of printers on the market. In instances where a DIF file for a specific printer does not exist, it can be easily created by running the DIF Creator wizard.

The uniFLOW Universal Driver is Key

For IT departments the uniFLOW Universal Driver removes obstacles and saves time and effort to implement the roll out, management and maintenance of a well-run output management solution irrespective of the devices used within the business. Users also benefit as there is just one driver to learn and utilize for all their print jobs. Previously unavailable functions such as management of finishing options, the number of prints and displaying a preview of the document directly at the device bring about increased employee productivity.