Print Server / Printer Accounting

J.L.Gilmour at J.L.Gilmour at
Thu Jul 20 07:45:18 GMT 2000

>    If you have a bidirectional link to your printers (often available around port 9100 on HP's JetDirect Boxes), and have printers that keep track of page counts internally, you might be able to query the printer before and after each print job for the number of pages it has printed.   Subtract the two (or let a utility do it) and you have the number of pages printed.   Any decent departmental printer should support some method to do this (either by Hewlett Packard's PJL language or in Postscript itself).

We bought some commercial software which we discovered only counted show-pages,
which when our students use 4up or similar commands, caused mayhem.

Anyway, there are two ways to implement it - either interogate the printer
before & after the job for the page counter. Or, use something like 
ghostview to count pages for you (assuming enough poke on the print server).

I have some code for accounting based on the printer's page counter if you
can use it. Not guaranteed to work as it was written by my predecessor. 


      Jayne Gilmour, BSc. MSc.  Unix & Network Administrator 
       Department of Computer Science, University of Exeter

    "Why is line printer paper strongest at the perforations?"

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