TweetFollow Us on Twitter

March 93 - PRINT TIPS

PRINT TIPS

LOOKING AHEAD TO QUICKDRAW GX

PETE ("LUKE" ALEXANDER

[IMAGE 052-053_Print_Hints_rev1.GIF]

With the release of QuickDraw GX later this year, there are a few changes in store for print land. In this column, I'm going to talk about two of these changes -- the disappearance of the PDEF 10 resource from the QuickDraw GX LaserWriter driver, and the disappearance of the 'STR ' (-8192) and 'PAPA' (-8192) resources from a system running QuickDraw GX.

Like most changes, the fact that these resources are going away is both good news and bad news. The good news is that printing is going to work much better in the GX world than it does today. For one thing, the new printer driver architecture provides functionality that used to be unavailable through the Printing Manager, which is why people got involved in directly grabbing resources in the first place. The bad news is that if youare currently grabbing these resources, you're going to have some problems running under QuickDraw GX, and you need to decide now how you're going to deal with this.

Before we get into solutions, however, let's back up a bit, and answer the question, What's a PDEF, anyway? A PDEF is just a code resource for printer drivers. All printer drivers contain multiple PDEFs, each of which implements a piece of the driver's functionality, like displaying dialog boxes or alerts. PDEF 10 contains the printer access protocol (PAP) code that enables a LaserWriter driver to communicate with a network printer. (For details about the interface to PAP, see Chapter 10, "Printer Access Protocol," inInside AppleTalk.) Some applications that need the PAP code have acquired it by sucking PDEF 10 out of the LaserWriter driver. Before Apple put together its PAP software licensing package, grabbing PDEF 10 like this was a quick and easy way to get what you needed. But it's an approach that's unsupported by Apple and that has always carried the seeds of compatibility problems.

So what should you do if you're currently grabbing PDEF 10 out of the LaserWriter driver? You've got the following possible solutions:

  • Continue to grab PDEF 10, but make sure you're prepared to handle failure gracefully when you can't get it. Basically, you'll need to let the user know that your application isn't compatible with the version of system software being used -- that is, the QuickDraw GX-based system. Not a very user-friendly solution, but that might be OK for your application.
  • If all you need to do is download a PostScriptTM file to the LaserWriter, use the PostScriptHandle PicComment and a basic print loop. Most applications need to do a lot more than send a bunch of PostScript code down the pipe -- for instance, they need to set the characteristics of the PostScript printer -- but if your application's needs are really this limited, it can be happy in the GX world. If you're interested in this approach, take a look at the Technical Notes "A Printing Loop That Cares . . ." and "PicComments -- The Real Deal." You can also look at the PostScriptHandleDemo snippet in the Snippets folder on theDeveloper CD Seriesdisc.
  • Write your own PAP interface files. This is a relatively time-consuming operation, but it gives you total ownership of the code, and your application is unlikely to break with future system software releases. Quite a few developers have had success with this approach.
  • License Apple's PAP library code -- the same library that's used within the LaserWriter Font Utility. The latest version (v. 1.5) of the library improves on the last version and has more complete documentation. If you're interested in licensing this library, please contact

    Software Licensing
    Apple Computer, Inc.
    20525 Mariani Avenue, M/S 38-I
    Cupertino, CA 95014
    AppleLink: SW.LICENSE
    Phone: (408)974-4667
  • Use Apple's LaserWriter Font Utility and add your custom features to it. In System 7, the LaserWriter Font Utility can handle drop-in enhancements called UTILs. UTILs take care of all the communication issues for you, and they give you quite a bit of power and flexibility. If you're interested in this approach, take a look at "PostScript Enhancements for the LaserWriter Font Utility" in Issue 10 ofdevelop.

At this point, you're probably wondering which solution is the best for you. It all depends on your requirements. From my point of view, any solution besides the first is acceptable if it will keep your users happy and keep you compatible with future system software releases.

Now let's turn to the disappearance of the 'STR ' (-8192) and 'PAPA' (-8192) resources. On a non-QuickDraw GX system, the 'STR ' resource contains the name of the currently chosen printer driver, while the 'PAPA' resource contains the name and network address of the current PAP printer. Because QuickDraw GX will allow more than one active printer at a time, these resources will become obsolete.

Why is this a problem? Only because some applications currently grab the 'STR ' and 'PAPA' resources to automatically select a printer without going through the Chooser. Under QuickDraw GX, it will be possible to redirect a print job to another printer via the Printing Manager's public API. So new applications and applications revised to work under QuickDraw GX will be able to programmatically redirect print jobs on the fly in a clean, supported manner.

If your application isn't GX-smart, the simplest way to deal with the disappearance of the 'STR ' and 'PAPA' resources is probably just to remove your application's feature of circumventing the Chooser. If your application absolutely requires this functionality, however, make sure that when these resources aren't available, you tell the user to go use the Chooser. This way your application will print on a QuickDraw GX system without any problems.

This column has looked at a couple of compatibility problems that can emerge when non- QuickDraw GX applications run under QuickDraw GX, and also at some of the ways that you can avoid these problems. As long as you're prepared to implement one of the solutions recommended here, your application will run just fine under QuickDraw GX. And on the bright side, QuickDraw GX is going to allow your application to access and control a vast amount of information at print time. QuickDraw GX will provide the API your application requires to take care of all the user's printing needs without having to cruise through printer driver or system resources. You asked for it, and soon you'll have it!

REFERENCES

  • Inside AppleTalk (Addison-Wesley, 1990), Chapter 10, "Printer Access Protocol."
  • Macintosh Technical Notes "PicComments -- The Real Deal" (formerly #91), "A Printing Loop That Cares . . . " (formerly #161), and "Printer Access Protocol Q&As" under "Using PAP & code for finding printer driver under System 7."
  • "PostScript Enhancements for the LaserWriter Font Utility" by Bryan K. Ressler, develop Issue 10.

PETE ("LUKE") ALEXANDER In the winter, Luke likes to hit the cross-country ski tracks. There you'll find him striding across meadows and down hills on long strips of fiberglass. One day he agreed to a "small" uphill ski at a friend's urging, only to discover halfway into it a virtually vertical two-mile climb! Weighing the risks of descending uncontrollably from there versus continuing on, Luke forged ahead, arriving at the summit an hour (and a lot of side stepping) later. Since then, he's been particularly wary of e-mails beginning "Dear Luke, I have this small printing problem."*

Grabbing the PAP driver from PDEF 10 is described both in the Macintosh Technical Note "Printer Access Protocol Q&As" under "Using PAP & code for finding printer driver under System 7" and in the article by Mike Schuster called "Laser Print DA for PostScript" in MacTutor Volume 2, Number 2.*

To find out whether the QuickDraw GX Printing Manager is installed, call the Gestalt function with the 'pmgr' selector. *

Thanks to Hugo Ayala, Tom Dowdy, Dave Hersey, Jim Luther, and Scott ("Zz") Zimmerman for reviewing this column. *

 
AAPL
$118.85
Apple Inc.
-0.15
MSFT
$48.10
Microsoft Corpora
+0.35
GOOG
$541.36
Google Inc.
+0.99

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Skype 7.2.0.412 - Voice-over-internet ph...
Skype allows you to talk to friends, family and co-workers across the Internet without the inconvenience of long distance telephone charges. Using peer-to-peer data transmission technology, Skype... Read more
HoudahSpot 3.9.6 - Advanced file search...
HoudahSpot is a powerful file search tool built upon MacOS X Spotlight. Spotlight unleashed Create detailed queries to locate the exact file you need Narrow down searches. Zero in on files Save... Read more
RapidWeaver 6.0.3 - Create template-base...
RapidWeaver is a next-generation Web design application to help you easily create professional-looking Web sites in minutes. No knowledge of complex code is required, RapidWeaver will take care of... Read more
iPhoto Library Manager 4.1.10 - Manage m...
iPhoto Library Manager lets you organize your photos into multiple iPhoto libraries. Separate your high school and college photos from your latest summer vacation pictures. Or keep some photo... Read more
iExplorer 3.5.1.9 - View and transfer al...
iExplorer is an iPhone browser for Mac lets you view the files on your iOS device. By using a drag and drop interface, you can quickly copy files and folders between your Mac and your iPhone or... Read more
MacUpdate Desktop 6.0.3 - Discover and i...
MacUpdate Desktop 6 brings seamless 1-click installs and version updates to your Mac. With a free MacUpdate account and MacUpdate Desktop 6, Mac users can now install almost any Mac app on macupdate.... Read more
SteerMouse 4.2.2 - Powerful third-party...
SteerMouse is an advanced driver for USB and Bluetooth mice. It also supports Apple Mighty Mouse very well. SteerMouse can assign various functions to buttons that Apple's software does not allow,... Read more
iMazing 1.1 - Complete iOS device manage...
iMazing (was DiskAid) is the ultimate iOS device manager with capabilities far beyond what iTunes offers. With iMazing and your iOS device (iPhone, iPad, or iPod), you can: Copy music to and from... Read more
PopChar X 7.0 - Floating window shows av...
PopChar X helps you get the most out of your font collection. With its crystal-clear interface, PopChar X provides a frustration-free way to access any font's special characters. Expanded... Read more
OneNote 15.4 - Free digital notebook fro...
OneNote is your very own digital notebook. With OneNote, you can capture that flash of genius, that moment of inspiration, or that list of errands that's too important to forget. Whether you're at... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Monster Strike Review
Monster Strike Review By Campbell Bird on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: BILLIARD STRATEGYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Collect monsters and battle by flinging them across the battlefield in this strangely... | Read more »
Proun+ Review
Proun+ Review By Jennifer Allen on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: TWITCHY RACINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Twitchy racing aplenty in Proun+, an enjoyably tricky title.   | Read more »
Lucha Amigos (Games)
Lucha Amigos 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Forget Ninja Turtles, and meet Wrestlers Turtles! Crazier, Spicier and…Bouncier! Sling carapaces of 7 Luchadores to knock all... | Read more »
Record of Agarest War Zero (Games)
Record of Agarest War Zero 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $7.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: HyperDevbox Holiday Turkey Black Friday Special Pricing! To celebrate the opening of the holiday season HyperDevbox... | Read more »
Raby (Games)
Raby 1.0.3 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.3 (iTunes) Description: ***WARNING - Raby runs on: iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Mini Retina, iPad Mini 3, iPad 4, iPad Air,... | Read more »
Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath (Games)
Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $5.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: ** PLEASE NOTE: Oddworld Stranger's Wrath requires at least an iPhone 4S, iPad 2, iPad Mini or iPod Touch 5th gen... | Read more »
Bounce On Back (Games)
Bounce On Back 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Dwelp (Games)
Dwelp 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: === 50% off for a limited time, to celebrate release === Dwelp is an elegant little puzzler with a brand new game mechanic. To complete a... | Read more »
Make Way for Fat Chicken, from the Maker...
Make Way for Fat Chicken, from the Makers of Scrap Squad Posted by Jessica Fisher on November 26th, 2014 [ permalink ] Relevant Games has announced they will be releasing their reverse tower defense game, | Read more »
Tripnary Review
Tripnary Review By Jennifer Allen on November 26th, 2014 Our Rating: :: TRAVEL BUCKET LISTiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Want to create a travel bucket list? Tripnary is a fun way to do exactly that... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Black Friday: 27-inch 5K iMac for $2299, save...
 B&H Photo continues to offer Black Friday sale prices on the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac, in stock today and on sale for $2299 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP... Read more
Karalux Announces 24K Gold-Plated iPhone 6
Karalux, a Vietnam-based jewellery firm, has launched a unique 24 karat gold-plated iPhone 6 version with gold-cast monolithic dragon on its back panel. The real 24 karat gold plated enclosure doesn’... Read more
Black Friday: 13-inch 2.6GHz Retina MacBook P...
 B&H Photo has lowered their price for the 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro to $1159 for Black Friday. That’s $140 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price for this model (except for Apple’s $1099... Read more
View all the Black Friday sales on our Mac Pr...
We’ve updated our Mac Price Trackers with the latest information on prices, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers. View Black Friday sale prices at a... Read more
Black Friday: 11-inch MacBook Air for $779, s...
 Best Buy has lowered their price for the 2014 11″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air to $779.99 for Black Friday. That’s $120 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale... Read more
Apple Store Black Friday sale for 2014: $100...
BLACK FRIDAY The Apple Store has posted their Black Friday deals for 2014. Receive a $100 PRODUCT(RED) branded iTunes gift card with the purchase of select Macs, $50 with iPads, and $25 with iPods,... Read more
Black Friday: 15% off iTunes Gift Cards
Staples is offering 15% off $50 and $100 iTunes Gift Cards on their online store as part of their Black Friday sale. Click here for more information. Shipping is free. Best Buy is offering $100... Read more
BEVL Releases Dock Tailored for iPhone 6 and...
Seattle based BEVL has released their first product: an iPhone dock that is divergent in build quality, rock-solid function and visual simplicity to complement the iPhone. BEVL is now accepting... Read more
Black Friday: $150 off 13-inch Retina MacBook...
 Best Buy has 13-inch 2.6GHz Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $150 off MSRP on their online store as part of their Black Friday sale. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available).... Read more
Black Friday: $300 off 15-inch Retina MacBook...
 B&H Photo has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $300 off MSRP as part of their Black Friday sale. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.