New Windows SBS 2011 and error with Virtual Printer (pdf Factory, cutepdf, etc) in a  SaaS from Creative Solutions

Posted on 2013-01-15
Last Modified: 2013-12-02
I have a client who uses Creative Solution Professional Suite tax and accounting software (SaaS). The connection uses  a Citrix client which is downloaded from the Thomson Reuters website allowing their subscribers to connect  to a Windows 2008 Server for the SaaS apps. My client uses Windows XP Pro/w sp3 to log on to their cloud app. The virtual printer, pdfFactory has been used by my client for the past two years and print jobs had been successful; this windows XP workstation is part of my clients domain.

The printing of the pdf stopped working since I installed a new Windows 2011 SBS Std. The new server replaced a Windows 2003 SBS std.

The virtual printer is still are listed on the work station and function correctly on local programs, i.e. Word, Excel, Notepad, even the Test Page for the virtual printer,  but it does not function correctly through the SaaS app. The  driver type is listed as HP LaserJet 4 on the SaaS print utility. I don't know what it was listed as prior to this issue. The printers which do work correctly are listed as Citrix Universal Printer. My client has a number of printers on the local host and those which are identified as Citrix Universal Printer work and produce usable output.  But there are printers, which are identified as the type “HP LaserJet 4” and these seem to be mostly the virtual printers: QuickBooks PDF, pdfFactory, primoPDF, etc. on his computer. When using one these virtual printers and specifically pdfFactory which has been the main printer for the past two years, the print job does receive a Citrix ICA file to the specified print spooler, but the job just sits in the spooler unable to print. I suspect from mis-matched drivers.

I spoke to their tech support about the Virtual Printer being typed as “HP LaserJet 4” and no printer throughput. I was told they don't support virtual printers and that Citrix doesn't support them either. Even though we have been able to use these virtual printers for the past two years and now we can't, they have no answer. After going through a series of uninstalls and re-installs and even changing the driver of the pdfFactory to an HP LaserJet at their suggestion I was still unsuccessful and it, of course, broke the pdfFactory. I asked the last tech I spoke to what they use. I was told they don't support these Virtual Printers but that she uses cutepdf. So i downloaded and installed cutepdf and MAGIC happened; it is listed as a Citrix Universal Printer and it functions correctly.

My question is:  Is it likely that the Microsoft SBS is preventing communication because of a Group Policy setting? ( i.e. Microsoft SBS prevents RDP to workstation from outside the local domain even through VPN hardware tunnels unless the Group Policy is adjusted to allow RDP from addresses not on the local subnet).  Or, is it likely that the SaaS provider made some change to the Citrix configuration (although their support team says  their software has not change)? I had one tech come back to me and said something like:  The configuration to this Client’s virtual printer “HP LaserJet 4” effects many more customers than just mine.  According to the “The Citrix Universal Printer drivers provide basic printer driver functionality to almost all printers, regardless of make or model. Deploying one of the drivers relieves the burden of administering multiple printer drivers and avoids problems with driver maintenance, replication and other client printing issues”.

Any ideas and suggestions are welcome. Thanks for your help and excuse my long-winded explanation.
Question by:timburke39
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LVL 74

Expert Comment

by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 38789900
I think that you may be looking in the wrong direction for the cause of this problem.  I've had numerous clients that have had pdf printer problems -- all of which were related to updates from QuickBooks, whose pdf printer doesn't play nicely with others on the same machine.

Is it possible to test this app/printer on a machine that doesn't have QuickBooks installed?  If so, that may help you in narrowing down the cause of the problem.


Author Comment

ID: 38790261
Hi Jeff,

Thanks for that suggestion I will try that and let you know. This has been a real problem; I appreciate your suggestion.


Accepted Solution

timburke39 earned 0 total points
ID: 38808477
Hi Jeff,

I found out that Creative Solutions made some change to their configuration of virtual printers. They now only map two virtual printers to the Citrix Universal Printer. They wouldn't tell me why they did this. The only two pdf printers they have mapped are Adobe Acrobat and Cutepdf. It is very strange why they disabled pdf printers that used to work. They were surprised by the number of support calls that they received do to this configuration change, at least that is what I was told.

LVL 74

Expert Comment

by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 38817708
So is your question now answered?


Author Closing Comment

ID: 38854275
Creative solutions change their support parameter to only support cutepdf and adobe acrobat. So there was no group policy on my clients network preventing the use of his virtual printers. But it was surprising that CSA support techs were not aware of these changes to their system prior to the change or to let CSA customers know.

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