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Making Linux look like an HP JetDirect Card

Posted on 2004-09-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
Short - I want to make a printer share on a linux box Fedora2 (i'm willing to use diffrent os) work like an HP JetDirect card does. In other words I want to windows client to send print jobs to an IP address. I think HP JetDirect cards use port 9100

Long story:  My corp accounting dept sends print jobs to my office printer using the HP's JetDIrect cards IP address. We have many jobs that are 500+ pages that just get filled away. I would like to take these print jobs and just save them to a pdf file. I've played and setup a linux box to take a postscript file and convert it to pdf. The box sending the print jobs I think is a SCO unix box, but getting changes to that box is not an option.

Short Summery:  Take a TCP/IP print job ment for a HPLaserJet JetDIrect card and convert it to a pdf and drop it off in a share.

So guys/gals can this be done?
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Question by:shook81
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by:Karl Heinz Kremer
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This could be done with a Perl script that starts a server process to listen on port 9100, and then stores every print job received to a file. Once the file is completely written, the server process would then call the Ghostscript to convert the PostScript file to PDF (either directly, or via the ps2pdf script that comes with Ghostscript). You would not be able to give the PDF files any meaningful names. You could try to extract the document name from the DSC header of the PostScript file, but depending on the application that produced the PostScript, you may not find anything useful in the header.

Are you sure that all files that are sent to the printer are PostScript?

One other thing to keep in mind: There are actually two flavours of the JetDirect protocol: One only sends data on port 9100, in the newer one, the printer sends data back to the PC on port 9101. If you can use the first method, the Perl script will work.

How are your Perl skills?
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by:shook81
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Perl skills = nota  I forgot to add i'm pretty new to linux and trying to learn more about the OS. It sounds like this would be a lot harder then what I had guessed.
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by:Karl Heinz Kremer
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Let me see if I can come up with something. I need some time for this however.
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Karl Heinz Kremer earned 500 total points
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OK, it seems to work :-)

Create this file in /etc/xinetd.d and name it jetdirect:

service hp-pdl-datastr
{
        socket_type     = stream
        protocol        = tcp
        wait            = no
        user            = nobody
        server          = /usr/bin/jetdirect.pl
        disable         = no
}  

Verify that you have an entry named hp-pdl-datastr in /etc/services.

Create a file named /usr/bin/jetdirect.pl with the following content:

#!/usr/bin/perl

$outdir = "/tmp/jetdirect";
#
# write the input data into a temporary file
$file = "/tmp/jetdirect.$$.tmp";
open(FILE, ">$file") || die "Cannot open temporary file $file";
while (<>)
{
        print FILE $_;
}

$date = `date +%Y%m%d%H%M%S%N`;
chomp($date);
$date =~ s/ //g;

$outfile = $outdir."/".$date.".pdf";

system("ps2pdf $file $outfile");
system("/bin/rm -rf $file");

Set the variable $outdir to the directory you want to store the PDF files in (e.g.
$outfile = "/var/spool/jetdirect";

Make sure that the directory exists and is writable for the user listed in the jetdirect file from above (currently set to "nobody").
The document name is set to a timestamp. The script does not currently check if the file name already exists, which is pretty low risk, because the name includes fractions of a second.
You should first find out if this solution works at all for you, once we know that, I'll spend some more time to refine the program.
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by:Karl Heinz Kremer
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Any luck?
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by:shook81
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sorry for the delay. Some things have come up at the office and I'm having to put this idea on the back burner for now.
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