[Coco] Coco and Modern Printers

Stephen H. Fischer SFischer1 at Mindspring.com
Sat Sep 15 00:52:52 EDT 2012


Microsoft has been the Driver Mfg. for quite some time now for everything, 
not a change for W8.

Companies have been just creating some unique things in "mini drivers" to 
add to what has been done before by MS.

Nothing new at all.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Chad H" <chadbh74 at hotmail.com>
To: "'CoCoList for Color Computer Enthusiasts'" <coco at maltedmedia.com>
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2012 9:32 PM
Subject: Re: [Coco] Coco and Modern Printers

> More to the point of your "Modern USB Printer" objective, I just 
> remembered one of the things I've been reading and hearing about 
> concerning Windows 8.  What does Windows 8 have to do with CoCo printing? 
> Well, in Windows 8 they have supposedly redesigned the driver system into 
> some sort of "universal class driver" platform.  According to Microsoft's 
> Windows 8 Consumer Preview demonstration, they are trying to get rid of 
> manufacturer specific drivers for different types of devices.  Soooo... If 
> you buy a Windows 8 ready Network Card, and don't have the drivers, you 
> don't have to go to the network to get them (The old catch 22), Windows 8 
> recognizes them all the same.  The same is supposedly true for printers. 
> All Windows 8 ready printers will use the same universal driver.   So, 
> wouldn't it make sense, theoretically, that if one could encapsulate the 
> "Windows 8 Universal Printer Class Driver" in some sort of stand-alone 
> serial to USB printer interface, that could run virtual
> ly any USB printer that was designed for Windows 8!?  Right?
> -----Original Message-----
> From: coco-bounces at maltedmedia.com [mailto:coco-bounces at maltedmedia.com] 
> On Behalf Of Chad H
> Sent: Friday, September 14, 2012 11:00 PM
> To: CoCoList for Color Computer Enthusiasts
> Subject: Re: [Coco] Coco and Modern Printers
> Of course, like with most things CoCo, there are many different ways of 
> achieving this as already pointed out...it depends on your know how, 
> pocket book, and what you actually want to accomplish.  A few days ago i 
> saw a e-bay listing for miscellaneous CoCo that was getting a bunch of 
> bids and at first i was confused why, but upon closer inspection i saw 
> there was a hard to come by gem in the the otherwise `junk` lot....a 
> serial to parrallel interface.  I was fortunate to acquire one of these 
> from a fellow off this list a couple of years ago.  I still print directly 
> to my HP DeskJet 540 printer using it.  It works great in both DECB & 
> OS-9.  This means i need no secondary `server` pc.  I could just as easily 
> hooked it up to a good old school LaserJet for even higher quality/speed 
> printing.  In fact i found some HP LaserJet 1160 printers online just a 
> while ago for about $40.  They are "MS-DOS compatible" so will also work 
> with the CoCo interface and they do 1200dpi at 20 ppm..
> .not too shabby.  Think im gonna get one for a backup.
> Sent from my ASUS Transformer Infinity
> Christopher Hawks <chawks at dls.net> wrote:
>><!-- .EmailQuote { margin-left: 1pt; padding-left: 4pt; border-left:
>>#800000 2px solid; } -->
>>Frank Swygert said the following on 09/14/2012 06:38 PM:
>>> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2012 11:52:39 -0500
>>> From: John Orwen<jorwen at neb.rr.com>
>>> Has anyone ever manufactured or has anyone ever contemplated making
>>> and selling a multipak cartride with an internal rom and an external
>>> usb port on it to interface to modern printers.  One that would
>>> contain the generic driver code to connect to any usb printer. That
>>> would convert the commands Print#-2 and LLIST for correct generic usb
>>> font and line only graphics from any coco and to any usb printer.  I
>>> would think that everyone with a modern computer connected to a usb
>>> printer would want something like this for their still active coco.
>>> Maybe I am the only one in the Universe.  Any comments would be 
>>> accepted.
>>> ----------------------------
>>> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2012 12:58:22 -0500
>>> From: camillus Blockx<camillus.b.58 at gmail.com>
>>> I was more thinking of using the pc for that, link to pcs with serial
>>> and divert with dosprint tool to any printer that is on pc. Even
>>> network printers.
>>> drawback is that you need the host always on.
>>> Paralell would work too but needs code on the pc side.
>>> I look into it more specific after I moved to my new place at end this 
>>> month.
>>> ----------------------
>>> Camillus has the right idea! The problem is that most inexpensive
>>> ink-jet and laser printers no longer have any "brains" built in
>>> (there are a few exceptions, but not the under $100 variety... unless
>>> someone found one recently...). The print driver handles all the
>>> plotting work. This works well with modern PCs because they have so
>>> much processing power. In the old days everything was off-loaded from
>>> the main CPU because it was limited, especially in 8 bits. The
>>> printers cost more, but could be hooked up to anything with an 
>>> appropriate interface.
>>> If you're using Drivewire as a server anyway, it wouldn't be hard to
>>> send print files to the PC and let it be the brains for the cheap 
>>> printer. Hmmm....
>>> Drivewire may have a print function in the server, seems someone was
>>> talking about that anyway...
>>> A micro controller or small single board computer should be able to
>>> handle driving a printer. A $35 Raspberry Pi should be able to do
>>> this! Mount it in a small box, make a serial cable (no serial port on 
>>> Raspberry Pi? Think again!!
>>> -- http://lavalink.com/2012/03/raspberry-pi-serial-interfacing/) to
>>> go between it and the CoCo, and mod a small Linux distro to boot and
>>> take inout from the serial port and output to the USB printer driver.
>>> This will take some software, and you'll need to limit the printer
>>> driver to some low end HP driver that will work with just about any
>>> cheap HP inkjet, but it could be made to work as a simple plug and
>>> play device, with a specific range/list of printers anyway. HP uses a
>>> universla driver on many of their simple printers, so it may not be
>>> that hard to do. Don't think the controllers like an Arduino are
>>> capable of driving a USB printer, or rather running any software
>>> printer driver. That would be a major tasking, writing such a driver 
>>> that would w ork!
>>        The Raspberry Pi should run the Linux version of Drivewire 3 with 
>> no problem.
>>It has printer support. (Might be possible to run Drivewire 4, depends
>>on RPi's Java capabilities.)
>>        A credit card sized Drivewire Server!!
>>        That's one of the first things mine is going to do (if it ever 
>> gets here!).
>>Christopher R. Hawks
>>In most countries selling harmful things like drugs is punishable.
>>Then howcome people can sell Microsoft software and go unpunished?
>>        -- Hasse Skrifvars, hasku at rost.abo.fi,
>>Coco mailing list
>>Coco at maltedmedia.com
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