Printing and Scanning
by Tony Butka
on the OS/2 Platform
As you all know, I really like GhostView, the OS/2 front end for the GhostScript postscript/pdf file viewer, editor, printer. The latest build is Version 4.2 for GhostView and 7.04 for GhostScript. In fact, the files are on the latest SCOUG CD of the month.
Installing is a breeze -- Russel Lang has simplified the installation of everything. You need two zip files, gsv42os2.zip, and gs704os2.zip. Just unzip the gsv42os2 file and run the
os2setup.exe file. Up pops the installer and everything will automatically be taken care of. Two notes (of course). First, if you have an earlier version of GhostView installed on your system, you should delete if before installing the new versions. GhostView does not like (understatement) versions of GhostScript before 7.04. Second, if you have OS/2 installed on other than your C: drive, make sure that you change the psfonts directory during install to reflect your actual boot drive -- in my case it is D:.
OK, so how does everything run? Well, on my system it is a mixed bag. The new version is better on viewing more of the newer Adobe pdf file formats than the old Adobe Acrobat 3.0 Reader -- the last one for OS/2. This is good. The down side is that for some reason, at least on my system, the ability to print pdf files seems to be broken; not even a little blinky light on my Xerox DocuPrint C20. A little research has shown that postscript files print out just fine with the same printer, so I suspect that something is broken in the pdf print function. A look on the newsgroups would seem to indicate that this issue is limited to postscript printers (probably more than just my Lexmark), and that a workaround is to select 'os2prn' in the printer selelction list, instead of checking the postscript box. I have contacted the author to see what's up. Just as a further test, I printed a document using the old Adobe Reader and it worked just fine, so who knows what exactly is up. In the meantime, if you need to print pdf files, stay with your older version of the program.
A couple of other snippets.
First, many of you have written me after noticing that the newest Epson printers do not have OS/2 drivers. Yeah, shock. Anyhow, our friends over at
VOICE are seeing if they can do something about it. Someone bought an Epson Photo 820 printer, and noticed that the utilities for doing nozzle check, head alignment, and head cleaning, don't work for the new printer. Also (sadly true) they noticed that the max print resolution under OS/2 using the Epson Omni3 drivers tops out at 1440x720 even though the max resolution of the printer is 2880x720 dpi (under that 'other' operating system). Anyhow, they are exploring the level of interest in getting better OS/2 support for this or any other of the new Epson printers -- although the primary focus is tor the 820. If you really want/need support for 6 color photo quality at high resolutions, please let the VOICE folks know by emailing to:
firstname.lastname@example.org. They are interested in company info, how many printers you would be interested in, if you want support for a different model, why and which one, and what applications you would be using at the 2880 resolution. You don't need to be a company to respond, but the focus here is on folks who need the ultra high resolution support. Thanks.
Finally, Lexmark is offering a laser printer that (after rebate) comes to a whopping $99.99. It's the Model E210. Being postscript, you can use the usual drivers under OS/2. I know that a number of you have periodically asked me about good lasers, and here is one for the asking. The only rap I have heard on the printer is that the toner cartridges are expensive (so are everyone elses), but the good news is that they are good for around 6000 pages, keeping the per page cost down around two cents/page. Anyhow, if you're interested, check it out.
Well, thats all for this issue -- running late, under the gun to get the article to Carla, and doing too many things at once. Multitasking, hah! I'm a guy and we all know ....
See you next month. As always, you can reach me at
You might want to read last month's Ink.
By day, Tony Butka is a bureaucrat for Los Angeles County. In his other life he lives in a loft surrounded by computers, printers, and a host of vinyl records.
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