Transparent printing support

What Perle products is transparent printing supported on?


If you connect a printer to a dumb terminal you will require transparent printing support.
A special transparent printing device is used to access the printer attached to the dumb terminal. When the special device node is used the Perle driver will append the correct XPON and XPOFF (transparent print escape character) to the data. When the dumb terminal recieves these characters it will know to either send the data to the attached printer or to the terminal screen.

The following Perle products include a transparent printing device node (the supported Operating System is specified).

Speed4: OpenServer 5, and UnixWare

I/O8+: OpenServer 5, and UnixWare

FAST: Not supported

UltraPort: OpenServer 5, and UnixWare

SX: OpenServer 5, UnixWare, and Solaris

RIO: OpenServer 5, UnixWare, and Solaris

Trueport: OpenServer 5, Solaris, and NCR Unix

Ioland: Not supported

The included driver utility must be used to configure the Terminal Type associated with the TTY device. This will enable the Perle /dev/xxxp or /dev/term/xxxp device to lookup the required entry in the xprint file.
Note: not all terminal types are supported.

Further details will be found in the Perle product manual.

Note: you can test transparent printing by echoing the XPON characters directly to the terminal device node (not the Xprint device), then send your data, then echo the XPOFF characters to return data flow to the screen. Use the echo command and send the string (substituting the escape and control characters with it's octal value).

If your terminal supports transparent printing then it will NOT display the XPON or XPOFF characters to it's screen. If you echo the XPON string to the device and it is displayed as characters on the screen it indicates that it does not understand the command.

You can find the XPON/XPOFF characters from your terminal's manual (or refer to the manufacturer). Below are some examples:

Terminal Type XPON XPOFF
wyse60 \ed# ^T
wyse50 \ed# ^T
tvi925 \e` \ea
wspc65 \e[5i \e[4i
vt220 \e[5i


vt100 \e[5i \e[4i

\e = esc = 033 octal
^T = DC4 = 024 octal

To send data to a terminally attached printer:

VT100 terminal

# echo "\033[5i" > /dev/tty1a
# cat /etc/hosts > /dev/tty1a
# echo "\033[4i" > /dev/tty1a

Wyse60 terminal

# echo "\033d#" > /dev/tty1a
# cat /etc/hosts > /dev/tty1a
# echo "\024" > /dev/tty1a

Note: if you are directly on the terminal (with the printer) then you can omit the redirection to the device node.

Article ID:
10/6/2003 1:34:45 PM
Last Modified:
4/5/2005 3:59:41 PM
Issue Type: