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Remote Printing via VPN

Posted on 2014-12-12
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Last Modified: 2014-12-15
We have a remote office that we could put on a hardware VPN (ASA5505) to connect a pc and barcode printer to our network.   Since the PC can use Cisco AnyConnect it would be great if there was a way to have the printer on a stand-alone VPN.

The printer does need to be on our network to talk to a Bartender server.

I was not sure if there were any barcode printers that could VPN, or any IPP that would work.
The challenge would be the continuous session from the printer to our network.

The job would be submitted from the laptop, processed on the server,  and sent to the remote printer.
The VPN can be done, but it is in another country so I was looking this over before the investment and configuration.
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Question by:PostQ
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5 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Qlemo
ID: 40497811
Can you draw a simple graph for the desired layout? I'm unclear about where the ASA is located, and whether you should be able to build a site-to-site VPN.
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ZabagaR earned 250 total points
ID: 40498375
I'd like to see a layout too. I'm not getting a good idea of what is supposed to be where...
How is the printer connected? Is the printer's interface USB or Ethernet? I guess if USB (or other) you could always buy a print server for it to give it an IP address. If it were me, I'd make sure the printer was accessible over IP and put up a small router in the remote office and do a site to site VPN between the 2 locations.
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Author Comment

by:PostQ
ID: 40500276
Your suspicions are correct a site to site VPN would be a great solution, however with a pc able to VPN without additional hardware I was not sure if printers could do the same without installing another ASA.   As of now they just have internet service such as DSL.  We can get the pc on our network with a software VPN.  The fact that the barcode printer will get the print job from our server forces us to have the printer (not just the pc) on our network.

There may not be a way around putting in an ASA to hardware VPN to our ASA.  I didn't want to share the printer via usb on the pc in case we have more pcs added.

The flow would be: pc connects to our network (software or hardware based), submits a job to a bartender server on our network, the barcode job is sent to the printer (in the same remote location as the pc) to a printer IP on our network.

Having a pc vpn with software is so easy, I was just hoping for printer technology to do the same.  We even have a Shoretel phone system that has a desk phone that will VPN to our network.
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Assisted Solution

by:Qlemo
Qlemo earned 250 total points
ID: 40500309
No, it is very unlikely that you will get something simple for a printer to be able to be talked to (!) via VPN. What you want to do is uncommon. Usually you RDP into the HQ, and use the locally mapped printers for the RDP connection - but that requires the printing application to run in the Terminal Server session (and the printer being installed on the PC and installed or auto-installable on the Terminal Server).
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Author Closing Comment

by:PostQ
ID: 40500403
I just wanted to make sure I was not overlooking any new features as I do not usually work with barcode printers.

Thanks for the insight and options.
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