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How to align overlay word document AS/400

Posted on 2010-01-05
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Actually i already have a word document printing as overlay on a printer IBM-17 directly attach (twinax) to the AS/400. I print the same overlay on a HP-4014 define in the network, and the word document is shift toward the right side. I customize the network printer using *WSCST to start printing position 001, and only the text shift to the left; the overlay document does not move to the left. (When creating the Word document, and the Overlay, the specification was made to set left and right margin to 0.; and the Printfile specify the overlay position 0  0 ).
Let me know if you have an idea of how to move the overlay document to the left; or to center the document on the HP network printer.
Thanks.
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Question by:RogerMoquin
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LVL 36

Expert Comment

by:Gary Patterson
ID: 26181315
You may need to re-create the overlay to fit within the printable margins on this particular printer, and then position it within the printable area.  You can probably tune the printer file and the overlay to work properly with both printers, but in my experience it can take some experimentation.

- Gary Patterson

 Check out my EE profile:  http://www.experts-exchange.com/M_4382324.html
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Author Comment

by:RogerMoquin
ID: 26181904
I already re-create the word document trying to reduce the printable template; and the result is when using the new overlay template on that printer, the word template is shifting more foward the right side; it is just like if the HP printer already have a built-in left margin with some value.
Thanks.
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LVL 36

Expert Comment

by:Gary Patterson
ID: 26183658
Different printers have different printable regions.  I don't know what the unprintable region is on this particular printer, but other HP printers have various unprintable margins.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/166055

- Gary Patterson


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Author Comment

by:RogerMoquin
ID: 26211490
It seems that the HP 4014DN does not support IPDS format...
To support the IPDS format HP sells a USB dongle that cost about 750$ us (half the price of this particular printers).
I'm pretty sure that is why we can't set the margin properly.
We will probably need to buy the dongle or a IPDS compatible printer to do that task...
unless you experts have another solution
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Accepted Solution

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Gary Patterson earned 2000 total points
ID: 26211745
I've been through this issue before with other printers.

HP 4014DN, without extra hardware, does not support IPDS, and I have assumed that you didn't have IPDS support on that printer from the outset of this thread.  Most printers don't support IPDS, unless you specifically ordered them with that option.  I don't know offhand of an HP printers that offer native support, though there are expansion cards and other hardware options that can be added to provide IPDS emulation.

Lack of IPDS support is not the root cause of the issue (though adding IPDS might help, if that device is smarter about how it handles the transform than ther AS/400 is).

If you are getting readable output, it is because the AS/400 OUTQ associated with that printer is configured with TRANSFORM(*YES), which invokes the Host Print Transform function.  HPT is an IBM-supplied utility that converts SCS and AFP to other usable printer languages, most notably PCL - the language spoken by your 4014DN.

If you DSPOUTD the outq description associated with this HP printer, you'll likely see TRANSFORM(*YES), and you'll also either see a MFRTYPMDL specified, or a custom workstation customization object.  These parameters control the translation table (which is what a Workstation Customization object is - a fancy translation table) that is used to perform the transform.  Just for fun, post the OUTQ description - maybe it isn't properly configured.  That'll give you trouble sometimes, too.

I'm not familiar with all of the hardware options on this printer, but you might be able to

Once HPT is done, your printer just sees a stream of PCL, and it renders it the best it can.

Some IPDS hardware devices do basically the same thing: convert IPDS into PCL (or PostScript, ow whatever).

Now matter what is doing the PCL conversion, you still can't print outside of the hardware's print region, and I think that is most likely what you are running into - the PCL engine in the printer is taking the PCL it is getting, and doing the best job it can with the hardware it has to work with.  This means that you need to "tune" the original spooled file to produce "better" PCL that works for this printer.

Create a smaller overlay, that fits into this particular printer's printable region, and then experiment with the positioning in the printer file or program until it lands right.

I have done plenty of o a lot of tricky AS/400 printer programming, and I find it instructive to capure the PCL that HPT generates.  

You can set up an LPD service on a PC that saves print jobs to a file.  Create an AS/400 OUTQ with the proper IP address, queue name, and transformation settings to point to the LPD server.  Then, print via HPT, and you get a file on the PC containing the PCL generated from HPT.  

If you want to go to the trouble to set this up, you can then post one of your problem files (with confidential information removed) and I can probably show you where the problem lies.  Sometimes you can fix it by injecting a little custom PCL into the print data stream, changing a WSCST object, or some other measure that becomes apparent once you decode the PCL.

- Gary Patterson

Check out my EE profile:  http://www.experts-exchange.com/M_4382324.html
                         
 
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Author Closing Comment

by:RogerMoquin
ID: 31672901
we will buy an IPDS printer because hundreds of reports are setup this way and it'll cost less to buy antother printer... the current printer printed more than a million pages.
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LVL 36

Expert Comment

by:Gary Patterson
ID: 26428276
Suggest you get the printer in and test with it before making the purchase, since printable regions vary from one IPDS printer to another, and you can still have issues with output shifting if the original documents weren't well-designed and tested.

- Gary
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Author Comment

by:RogerMoquin
ID: 26428543
ok thanks Gary
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