The Windows server operating system (Windows 2000,2003,2008) does not maintain a detailed print log. The Windows Event Log can be used to audit some basic print spooler activity events, however additional software is needed to enable detailed logging of print jobs and documents. PaperCut is ideal for this requirement. The software will keep detailed activity log/logs of all user printing activity including information such as:
The user who printed (ie. their network user ID)
The time of the print event
The number of pages
Document attributes such as color, duplex, grayscale, paper size, document area, paper length
Where the print job originated from (the workstation name or IP address)
The document name and type (for example a Word document’s file name)
PaperCut Software makes a free print logger available from our website’s free software section. The other editions of PaperCut also offer flexible printer log functionality.
Accessing PaperCut’s Print Log
PaperCut NG maintains a detailed print log of all printing activity on the network. The information in the print log is ideal for monitoring or auditing print activity. The information is accessible via a number of different methods and formats. This include:
Via the Job Log section of the PaperCut administration interface:
PaperCut 15.1 or later: Logs-> Job Log
PaperCut 15.0 or earlier: Printers -> Job Log
Via the PaperCut administration interface under the Printers → Job Log section.
Exported as PDF or HTML reports access via the Reports section.
As a RAW CSV file format located in the [app-dir]/logs directory.
All print job data is recorded in real-time.
Possible Uses of Print Log Data
System administrators generally use PaperCut to implement a Print Quotas system however the detailed logging and print recording is often used for general monitoring (often referred to as silent monitoring). Uses include:
Checking for abnormal use or activity
Monitoring an individual user’s print habits
Inspecting the type of documents printed (ie. document names and file extensions)
Locating over utilized printers so they can be replaced with printers designed for high-volume printing.
Determining locations where more printers may be required
Estimating paper and toner usage and trends for budgeting purposes
Providing management with reports to compliment other activity reports such as phone records and building entry and exit.
For more information on PaperCut’s ability to track printing or implement a print quota solution, please see the main PaperCut web page.