Using a release station for color printing only

Q I’d like to set up a system where black and white documents print directly on the printer, but color printing goes into a holding queue and waits for administrator/ teacher approval. Is this scenario possible?

Yes. This is possible using two methods:

  1. Using print scripting
  2. Using multiple queues - one direct queue that only allows black and white jobs and one color queue that requires release approval.

Scripting Method

The preferred method in modern versions of PaperCut is to use print scripting. There is a pre-written recipe called Hold color jobs in a release queue. This recipe may be added to a print queue via PrintersSelect printerScriptingImport Recipe. After the recipe is applied, any color job will not print immediately but will need to be released. This can be done via the web interface (the Jobs Pending Release tab, or http://server:9191/release) or via a dedicated release station.

Alternate Method - multiple queues

This requirement can be accomplished with PaperCut NG/MF by using a Print Release Station. More information on the Release station can be seen here:

A: To configure the release station so only color jobs are held, you’ll need to set up two separate print queues - one for color printing and the other for grayscale printing only. That is, install the print drivers on the server twice so you have two queues mapping to the same physical printer. Call one queue Approved Color Printing and the other Black and White Only (or other names as appropriate).

Inside PaperCut NG/MF, configure the Filters/Restrictions on the black and white queue so only grayscale documents are allowed. Configure other settings as appropriate (e.g. set the cost per page for grayscale printing).

On the color queue, enable the Release Station with the option Only managers can release approval and apply a filter so only color documents are allowed (not grayscale). Configure other settings as appropriate (e.g. set the cost per page for color printing).

With this configuration, if the user/student wishes to print color the job will go into the release station holding queue pending staff/teacher release.

Also See: PaperCut MF has support for secure print release using card readers and/or embedded copier software.

keywords: release station, print queue control

Categories: How-to Articles, Releasing Print Jobs