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Kevin
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What specs for a server to be used as a print server

Good Morning,

I have been tasked to order a "Rackable Server" for our data room. The main purpose for this server will be to use it as a print server, for an HP Laserjet Enterprise MFP M682z printer. This printer is the only network printer we will have in our office.

We are a small office, consisting of only 7 employees. We do not have any other servers in our office. All of our data is stored in our head-office in Paris which we access over the WAN.
My office is located in the Cayman Islands.

We may also use the server to store images (ISO's), but this has not been confirmed. If we do, the footprint will be very small.

When it comes to hardware, I am not that familiar with what I should order.

I have already decided on a 1TB drive, which will be more than enough, with 16 GB's of memory. OS will be Windows Server 2019.

It's the questions below, I am not sure on how to answer.

The vendor is asking the below questions on what specs I would like to be included for the rackable server.

1. How many physical CPU's are required?
2. What CPU speed is needed?
3. How many cores per CPU?
4. What type of Hard Drive (SATA, SAS, SSD)?
5. What speed of Hard Drive (7.2k, 10k, 15k)?
6. Do you want dual power supplies?
7. What type of power connection do you require? (Power Cord, 125VAC 13A NEMA 5-15 Plug, or Cabinet Jumper Power Cord, 250 VAC 10A, C14-C13 Connector)

As I said above our office is small and we do not expect to grow anytime soon, the employees do not print a lot. At most each employee will have an average of 5 small print jobs a day if that.

So the server specs I need this rackable server to have is essentially minimum.

Can someone assist me in answering the above hardware questions for the needs I have explained above?

Appreciate your time and assistance.

Kind Regards,
K
Server Hardware

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Last Comment
Philip Elder

8/22/2022 - Mon
Hello There

In my opinion, you don't need a physical server at all with this number of employees and only one printer installed. This is overkill.
I would install the printer on each computer manually or you can also use any Windows 10 computer (already in use or dedicated which will be running during the work hours) and share this printer if you really need something like a print server.
Hayes Jupe

wow.

A dedicated print server for 1 printer.... that is a massive amount of overkill. 

given the small number of devices printing, the single printer and an indication that you wont be growing - it would be better to simply set it on each PC, or if you really want, create a queue on one PC and share it.
rindi

I really think you are shooting at ants with a huge canon. Your printer already has a built in Print-Server, a JetDirect 2900nw... Just connect it directly to the LAN, set it up, then configure your PC's to use it, & your done.

I assume from your previous Question (where I incidently suggested the same thing), that the reason to go for just one Office printer rather than 7, one for each PC, was to reduce overall costs:
If you buy a Rack Server, that costs extra...
You need the extra Windoze Server License, that costs extra...
Servers require good, constant power, that costs extra...
Servers require cool Temperatures to run, that on the Caymans probably means extra Air-conditioning, & that costs extra...

A printer on the other hand, sits there on standby, using minimal power, unless when used...
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William Peck
Seth Simmons

The vendor is asking the below questions on what specs I would like to be included for the rackable server.
I could answer this if you said you needed a virtualization host for ESXi or Hyper-V and building infrastructure with it, but to manage a few daily print jobs for a single device - configure each machine to print directly and be done with it

anyone questions it, tell them it makes no sense at multiple levels and is a waste of money
there is enough feedback in this thread to justify not doing this

I really think you are shooting at ants with a huge canon.
i was thinking more like a mouse with elephant gun, but yeah...
Kevin

ASKER
Hello all,

Thank you for your comments. I agree with all of them.

The thing is that management wants control over the printer.

They want to put a system in place, with a particular piece of software, where if user A prints to the printer they must enter an access code/PIN for the printer to release the job to the user. Each user will have their own PIN.

@Rindi, you mentioned that the printer has it's own built in PrintServer, would you know if this PIN style capability is possible with it? And also if the builtin printserver will log these jobs.

The original idea was to install a piece of software on this new rackable server that would allow this capability to the users. I know that software like this usually works with Active Directory, however, we would need to find a solution that works "without" AD as our DC's are in Paris and we are not authorized to use them for this functionality. So this is where the whole idea of purchasing a new server came in.

Kindly advise.

Regards,
K
rindi

I don't know about the exact capabilities of that server. But you should be able to look up what options it provides on the HP site, or ask HP support for details.
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Seth Simmons

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Philip Elder

The printer driver can be configured to request that PIN at each desktop as far as I can remember.

If it's mandatory, set up a virtual machine on the existing virtualization host, there is one(?), to run as a print server or set it up on one of the desktops in Hyper-V after it's been installed. Give it 2 vCPUs and 4GB vRAM and a small disk. Done.

A license would be required or it may fall under an Enterprise Agreement if one is in existence.