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Chapter 15

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Slow printing

Fonts can be downloaded to printers, but that takes time. If a form uses several different fonts, or switches between fonts, downloading may cause delay.

Communication problems may also be involved here. QuickBooks may be ordering print in a font which is not on the printer.  That could result in sending the print over as bitmapped graphics, eight little black dots at a time.

One step is to inquire of the printer.  It may be able to print out a sampler of its resident fonts. The command is usually a simple sequence of buttons, but may involve holding one button down for several seconds. (My cat can do it!  He stood on the printer to look out the window.) Note, for example, that if fonts in Flemish, Flemish Bold, and Flemish Italic are listed, each of these a different font.  This list does not include Flemish Bold Italic, meaning that the bold italic font is not there.  If point sizes are given, these sizes are included, but not others.  In QuickBooks 5, Customize Forms should find any available font through the driver. Setting up to print those fonts should make printing fast.

Some older printers may be slow when printing TrueType fonts.  This can be a sticking point. QuickBooks 4 and earlier use TrueType Arial, as set up in Windows, to print all constant information on invoices. 

Resolution and print quality may be accessible in the Windows printer setups.  Quality work takes time, but better resolution than 300 dpi may not be worth it. This is something you have to try out.

Spooling means XE "spooling" that Windows stores the printer output on the hard drive, and sends it when the printer can accept it.  Spooling allows the application to be faster with its part of the printing process, but delays printer output.  Spooling in Windows 95 is discussed above as part of Windows 95 Printer Adjustment. Spooling in Windows 3.1 is discussed at the end of Windows 3.1 Printer Adjustment.

Memory within the printer may be a factor.  Expensive printers may have 4 Mb or 8 Mb of memory. If a manufacturer is designing a printer to sell at a low price, memory is the first thing to go.  I forget what the next thing is.

The last suggestion is the one you do not want to hear: new equipment may help.  (I can hear the response from the guy with the 300 MHz system, who still encounters slow printing!) 

 

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Last modified: May 21, 2004