G2 Fall report names PaperCut #1 in Print

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PaperCut NG & PaperCut MF Manual


Scenario: The medium to large business

SandComp is a large manufacturing company consisting of 3000 employees spread over 4 sites. All sites are connected via a fast Wide Area Network (WAN). Printers are hosted on local servers with the largest site hosting printers in a Microsoft Cluster environment.


  1. Must support a Microsoft Cluster environment.

  2. Must centrally store print data on a server located at the main office.

  3. Must not cause disruption if the WAN link goes down between offices.

  4. The consulting division needs to be able to track printing by project (client/matter format) so costs can be passed back to their clients.

  5. The finance department needs secure print release on their shared printers stored in the utility room.

  6. The system should be proactively monitored to ensure as little disruption to the service as possible.


  • Initial installation

    The implementation of PaperCut NG/MF in this environment would best be managed using staggered or step-by-step approach. First, install and test the software on the central offices’ clustered environment, then rolled out to the other offices, and finally implement the secure printing and client popups. A staggered approach is likely to minimize disruption allowing network administrators to focus on the tasks at hand.

  • Requirement 1

    PaperCut NG/MF supports Microsoft Clustering Services up to 2008 R2. The installation process is documented in Clustering and high availability.

  • Requirement 2

    You can install the print servers at the remote locations as secondary servers reporting back to the primary server. All data is stored in one location. The services communicate using XML Web Services and consume only a few bytes per print job. This means the system works well over the WAN.

  • Requirement 3

    PaperCut NG/MF has a fail-open design. This means that if a failure occurs, such as the network fails between servers, printing continues as normal. Businesses with WAN deployments should consider implementing a Site Server at each site to ensure continuity of Find-me Print and copy services during a WAN outage. For more information, see Resiliency with Site Servers.

  • Requirement 4

    The consulting division can make use of the share accounts feature to track their printing by client. More information on shared accounts is available in Shared accounts. These advanced users would benefit from using the advanced popup. The advanced popup offers advanced searching features allowing end users to quickly located the appropriate account and enter job comments as required.

  • Requirement 5

    You can facilitate secured print release by setting up a terminal (a low-end PC will do) in the finance department’s utility room. When a member of the finance department prints to a shared printer, their document will hold in the queue until that member goes to the utility room and releases the print job with his or her username and password. This process ensures that documents stay secure and can’t be “accidentally” collected by other people.

  • Requirement 6

    The requirement to proactively monitor the print system can be accomplished using the PaperCut System Health interface. This allows you to monitor your entire print environment using your existing monitoring tools, such as PRTG and Zabbix. You might already be monitoring the status of your printers and servers, which can help a lot, but often does not tell the whole story. It’s not just about monitoring individual components, but also the overall system usage.