DOS Printer

Print from DOS to ANY windows device!

Email directly from DOS !


Screen Shots
Capturing Lpt1

Some Screen Shots ...

(Check out the Help file too!)

You can choose a file and either print or email it ...

You can Click on the Setup Button to change the behaviour of DOS Printer

When this window is displayed, all printing options are disabled. Click the "Back to Printing" button at the bottom of the screen to close the window and re-enable printing. 

1. Formatting Options

1. Max Lines Per Page
DOS Printer will normally generate a new page when it strikes a "New Page" control command in the text file. For the technically minded, this is normally ascii codes <13> <10>. Some DOS Programs generate fixed length pages and rely on the printer to force a new page. typically the page length is either 60 or 66 lines. If DOS Printer is not generating page breaks, you can use this setting to set the maximum lines per page. Leave it set at zero unless you have problems!

2. Default Left Margin
DOS Printer starts printing very close to the left hand side of the page. Some printers cannot handle this. If the left side of your page is missing, increase this value. Leave it unchanged unless you have problems. 

3. Line Height
DOS Printer normally fits about 60 lines per page - this equates to a line height of 11 points. you can change this value to fit more or less lines on a page

4. Default Character Spacing
You can set the default character spacing to 10cpi (characters per inch - 80 fit across a normal page), 12cpi, 15cpi, or automatic. If you choose automatic, DOS Printer goes through the file and determines the most appropriate font based on the longest line in your text file. You should set this to automatic if your files do not contain Epson Printer codes which set the font. You can also choose to print in Landscape mode.

5. Printer Options
Use this option to set the default Printer to use and the page size. At this stage, landscape printing mode is not supported and will be ignored.

Capturing LPT1:

DOS Printer can attempt to intercept jobs being sent to LPT1: from DOS Programs.

It does this by installing a "DOS Capture" printer driver which it can communicate with to "grab" jobs from the queue and turn then into text files.

This will not work on All systems. For example If you have DOS Programs that print Images, if you have a real printer attached to lpt1, if DOS Printer is unable to install the required printer or make the required registry changes due to some security or operating system issue. If this does not work you have 2 options:

bullet(1) have your dos program print to a file, and use the Monitored Printing function of DOS Printer (below).
bullet(2) check out What if your DOS program cannot print to the file

Monitored Printing

DOS Printer can reside in the system tray and check for the presence of files you specify every 10 seconds. If it finds the file, it will print it using the current settings and then delete it. In this way it acts like a "virtual printer driver".

You can monitor for up to 4 file types and even send them to different printers!!

1. Disable Automatic Printing
You can also use DOS Printer to find files and print them manually by clicking on the 'Print a File" button. If this is going to be your main use for DOS Printer, you can disable the automatic printing function by checking this option.

2. Path
If you are Using Automatic printing, specify the path that the files to print will be found. you can either type it in or click the button to the right and select it from a dialog box.

3. File
Specify the file name to print here. You can use a single name (eg report.txt or wildcards (eg *.txt)
Because DOS Printer deletes the files after printing, some combinations (eg *.*) have been disabled in the intertests of safety!

4. Preview before Printing
You can view the file on the screen before printing by enabling this option. When the file is being previewed, you can choose to print the whole file or just one page by clicking the buttons at the top of the screen.

Emailing your Report

DOS Printer converts your text file into a windows graphic file before printing. These files can be inserted into either the body of an email, or a rich text format (rtf) file and emailed via your default email client.

The files are GRAPHIC images of your text file. they are formatted in exactly the way they would be printed, and cannot easily be edited by end users. 
The disadvantage to this method is that the files sizes are larger. the advantages are that the end user sees the file formatted as you wished, the end user cannot easily manipulate or edit the file, and the end user does not require any special software (eg Adobe Acrobat Reader) to view your email.

1. Email Options
You can send your report as an RTF attachment, in the body of the email, or both.

2. E-Mail Field Name
DOS Printer can automatically find an email address from within a document. 
It does this by searching the document for the first instance of the text found in the "E-mail Field Name". When it finds this text, the remainder of that line (up to the next blank space) is used as the email address. 
In this way, you can specify your email recipients anywhere in your document !!!!!

3. Email Subject
you can specify a subject line for your email here.

Not All Email Clients work with DOS Printer. If no email appears, you may need to save the file as a Rich Text File and email it manually.

Outlook Express should always work. Others will vary

Advanced Options

1. End of Line uses codes 010 013 instead of 013 010
Normal text files signify the end of a line with the characters 013 010. Some software uses the non-standard "backwards" form of this 013 010.

If your report is missing lines, try turning this option on.

2. Ignore End of Page commands
Normally, an End of Page command is represented by Ascii character 012. If you want DOS Printer to ignore these commands, check this box. You may also want to set a maximum page length on the "Formatting Options" tab. (See above)

3. Never Delete Files (Manual Printing)
Normally, if you have manually printed a file, DOS Printer gives you the option of deleting that file. Check this box to turn that feature off.


DOS Printer can superimpose letterhead in the form of a Rich Text File over your report. In this way, you can include Logos, coloured text etc at the top of every page. You need to allow space for the letterhead in your text files!

(c) dsb 2002