PaperCut is a technology and server system for metering and managing network-based printing and copying. It replaced GoPrint as our campus print management system in 2012-13, one department/building/floor at a time.
As with any print management system, every print job must be identified with a user who has an account that can be charged for printing. When a client computer is part of an Active Directory (AD) domain, and the user logs into the computer using an ADS account, print jobs are associated with that user and PaperCut is satisfied. But when the login account is a shared one like labuser (even when the user logs in using LDAP authentication), or a strictly local account like student or loaner, PaperCut client software is needed to prompt the user for an AD account with which to associate the print job. (And possibly a Windows 10 remediation--see the "New in 2018" note in the Technical Troubleshooting section.) (On Macs that use an LDAP-authenticated login, we're still figuring out what is possible.)
Also, if a user works with multiple departments or multiple accounts to be charged for printing, the correct account for each print job has to be identified at the time the job is created. In this case, the PaperCut client, sometimes referred to as the "pop-up", is also needed.
From the User Guide:
Some features the client software provides include:
- Displays notification messages, such as why a print job was denied.
- Displays print policy popups, such as to encourage duplex printing.
- Displays popups for shared account allocation/charging (department accounts, client billing).
- Allow the user to confirm the details and/or cost of their print job before printing.
- Shows the user their current balance (useful in schools where print quotas are used).
- Can be used for authentication when printing from public terminals or other unauthenticated systems.
- PaperCut MF, version 18.2.2 as of 8/03/2018, has client software for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux computers, and Web browsers
- The publisher's home page is www.papercut.com
- The product support page here offers a knowledgebase and FAQ, along with up-to-date online documentation here
- This chapter of the online documentation offers a quick visual introduction to the client software
The PaperCut client software is Java-based, incorporating its own Java runtime. Here are the detailed system requirements.
PaperCut is an enterprise-wide license based on the number of users. Within our environment, the PaperCut client software can be freely distributed.
Though the PaperCut client software could be used on home computers connected via a VPN, PaperCut offers a much simpler alternative called WebPrint, described in the section titled "Personal Machines" below.
Lab and Classroom Availability
All lab computers have a PaperCut client installed. The client must be running for students, student workers, and some faculty and staff to be able to print, because it is the only way for the user to input information to PaperCut and for PaperCut to send messages to the user.
The PaperCut Client for Windows is installed and running on all Citrix application servers. However, as of Feb 2015, it is not working correctly for PaperCut users who require the popup; this is being investigated.
Labs and Classrooms
To request this software be installed on a refreshing lab/classroom contact xxx
Link to protected information for how we configured it to work
College Owned Equipment
To install the latest PaperCut client for Windows, from the KBOX user portal, choose "Install PaperCut MF Client 18.x". (If, during the installation, you receive an error message when it tries to update jp2launcher.exe, choose Ignore and let the installation finish. The Kscript compensates for this error by copying the missing file.) The PaperCut popup will not be available until the computer is restarted, or you can start it manually from the Start Menu shortcut.
To install the PaperCut client for Mac OS X, from the same KBOX user portal, choose "Mac OS X Application: PaperCut Client 18.x".
To install the PaperCut client for Linux, access the client software on the Samba share \\print.ads.carleton.edu\PCclient\linux, and follow these instructions from the manual.
To use the PaperCut client for the Web (not the same as WebPrint), from your Web browser use the Carleton "go" shortcut http://go.carleton.edu/postprint, which resolves to https://print.ads.carleton.edu:9192/client ,
Link to protected information for ITS instructions
Though the PaperCut client software could be used on home computers connected via a VPN , PaperCut offers a much simpler alternative called WebPrint. From any computer, from any Web browser, use the Carleton "go" shortcut http://go.carleton.edu/webprint (which resolves to https://print.ads.carleton.edu:9192/user ), login using your Carleton NetID and password, and choose WebPrint from the list of features at the left, in a process something like this .
Who To Call
The ITS HelpDesk at x5999 fully supports access to PaperCut-managed printers on campus.
Questions, Tips and Tricks
Whether the PaperCut client software is installed or not, a user can always use the PaperCut User Web Tools, including WebPrint, from any Web browser. On campus, enter the Carleton "go" shortcut http://go.carleton.edu/webprint , or the full location https://print.ads.carleton.edu:9192/user . On college-owned computers, the Web browsers may have a bookmark for this link in a Carleton folder under the name "PaperCut" or "PaperCut User".
Whether the PaperCut client software is installed or not, a user can always see a list of PaperCut-managed printers from any Web browser, at the location https://print.ads.carleton.edu/printers . On college-owned computers, the Web browsers may have a bookmark for this link in a Carleton folder under the name "Printers" or "New Printers".
- Identify the printer/print queue being used. Does its name or configuration indicate it's on print.ads.carleton.edu? Is the printer listed on the (New) Printers page at https://print.ads.carleton.edu/printers/ ? If not, how was it installed on this computer? Is the printer defined on this computer using a Windows print queue, or an LPR/LPD print queue, or does it have only a direct IP address or DNS name?
- Based on whether this is a refreshing machine or not, identify the username that PaperCut is associating with the print job, which is usually related to how you login to this computer. On refreshing machines, the hidden login name is labuser, so the PaperCut client will prompt for a real user to login for printing. On faculty and staff desktop Windows machines, the computer has been joined to the AD domain ads.carleton.edu, so most faculty and staff login to such machines using their AD username, which is their CarlNetID and password. On faculty and staff desktop Mac OS X machines, most faculty and staff login ???, using their CarlNetID and password.
If the PaperCut client pops up when you print and asks for login credentials, the username given to the popup is the one used by PaperCut for this print job. On shared computers, like workstations used by student workers, the PaperCut client must be installed, and depending on who is logged in and how, it may or may not prompt for a PaperCut login when you try to print.
New in 2018: Due to changes in Windows 10 version 1709 and later, the username used to login to the computer has become an additional, essential, troubleshooting point. Without a remediation, a local Windows account (a non-domain, non-AD account) may no login be able to print or add printers. ITS is distributing this remediation (re-enabling SMB2 guest access) to all faculty/staff desktop (non-refreshing) computers in late September 2018 using the KACE K1000.
- Is the PaperCut client installed on this machine, and which one: Windows or Mac OS X? What is the exact version of the PaperCut client? Depending on the username(s) from #2, it may or may not be needed, but it never hurts. On refreshing machines or shared workstations, the PaperCut client is always required. On Windows machines, if the PaperCut client is installed, there will be an icon, a green stylized P, in the system tray (a.k.a., notification area) at the bottom right of the desktop. (On Windows 7, you may have to use the small up arrow to see all the system tray icons.) On Mac OS X, ???? We have seen cases where the PaperCut client failed to popup for student worker printing when the client version was too old (e.g., more than a year).
- If a job was already sent to a printer, but it never appeared or there was some kind of problem, identify the job characteristics: what date and time was the job sent, how many pages were printed, and from which computer? Some ITS staff can trace "lost" jobs in the PaperCut system with this information, along with the print queue name and username, to determine what happened.
- If any error messages appeared, exactly what was the text? If the error message offered a Details or More Info button or link, exactly what did that show? If the user answered a prompt, what did the prompt say and how did you respond?
- As a temporary workaround, can the document be printed using WebPrint (see instructions above)? (Using WebPrint removes this particular machine and its printer configuration from the scenario, and clarifies exactly which username is being used by PaperCut.) WebPrint accepts PDF files and most Microsoft Office documents.
However, if your application or operating system can save a file as a PDF, you can use WebPrint. On Windows computers, you can install the free utility PDFCreator, which lets any Windows application, even NotePad, "print" to a PDF file, which you can then submit using WebPrint. On Mac OS X, ????
When using WebPrint, if the Web user interface reports, "Errored: Printer '\\servername\queuename' is currently not available.", then ITS may not have installed the print queue in the webprint VM. Contact Sande Nissen in the SysNet group in ITS to have this fixed.
There are two timeouts related to PaperCut print management. First, for situations where the PaperCut client is required to identify the user, the user has 60 minutes from the time the print job was submitted to respond to the PaperCut client with authentication credentials or an answer to a prompt, else the job is cancelled. This is most common on printers marked as unauthenticated printers (like ITS public lab printers), and for computer logins marked as unauthenticated users (like labuser). It could also be that the client computer does not have the PaperCut client software installed, or that the client window did not "pop up" to the front as expected so the user did not notice it.
The second timeout happens only with submitted print jobs that are held, awaiting release at the MFD or a nearby print release station. In this situation, the print job will be cancelled after sitting in the queue for 1440 minutes, which is 24 hours.
In both cases, the print job is irretrievable after the timeout expires.