6 Replies Latest reply on Mar 29, 2019 10:29 AM by Manuel Caicedo-Rivera

    Review of "printing from browser" methods

    Mattia Martinello

      Hi.

       

      I have to select a Zebra printer for a new project which will need to have a direct printing from browser feature (I am referring about a button on the web page which directly print a label to the Zebra printer without any additional intervention from the user).

       

      The label will need to have some text (formatted with some font and size) and one picture.

       

      I read the document Zebra Web Printing Solutions, and I understand that there are some ways to do so:

      • use Browser Print software (with a USB Zebra printer connected to a running PC)
      • print directly to a network connected Zebra printer using an HTTP POST call sending an XML file to the printer
      • print directly to a network connected Zebra printer using a GET HTTP call
      • use Cloud Connect feature (with a network connected Zebra printer)

       

      I am wondering which is the best method for me, so I don't know if I'm missing some other available method.

       

      I would prefer a network connected printer to avoid any connection to a workstation PC, so I am looking to the Zebra GX420 (with the optional network interface) or the Zebra ZD500 printers.

       

      Could you help me please?

        • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
          Dmitry Prokhorov

          Hello Mattia,

           

          It may depend on your network and application deployment configuration. For the case you are going to have your printers installed in the same office/area as your app client browser it looks like most reasonable way for you would be to use Browser Print SDK.

           

          It will provide you some flexibility being compared to direct network communication to printer.

           

          Dmitry Prokhorov

          Software Engineer, Kutir Mobility

          Posted on behalf of Zebra Technologies

            • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
              Mattia Martinello

              Hi Dmitry,

              thanks for your answer.

               

              I've already seen Browser Print SDK, but I'd like to avoid any software installation on clients if possible.

              This would make things much more simpler for us.

               

              Could you tell me what differences about flexibility there are between Browser Print SDK and direct network communication to printer, please?

               

              I'm also looking some documentation about printing through a POST call to the printer, but I'm not finding anything, could you send me some links, please?

               

              Thank you!

                • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
                  Dmitry Prokhorov

                  Hello Mattia,

                   

                  I mean it will not require to change your web application code and settings to send your print jobs to another printer. Also, different users would be able to print on different printers.

                   

                  I unsure if there are supported any printing capabilities via POST request. Where you was able can see this information? You can use direct TCP connection but it isn't an HTTP request.

                   

                  Dmitry Prokhorov

                  Software Engineer, Kutir Mobility

                  Posted on behalf of Zebra Technologies

                    • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
                      Mattia Martinello

                      I read this post Printing from Websites part 2 in which Robin West speaks about sending raw print data directly to the printer using HTTP POST calls.

                       

                      I am not definitively against using the Browser Print SDK, but:

                      • I wish to have as less single point of failure as possible (an application installed on a local PC could cause problems at any time)
                      • the printer should be connected to the network and not using an USB connection to a local PC
                      • I would like to print potentially from any client computer in the network

                       

                      Thanks!

                        • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
                          Dmitry Prokhorov

                          As you can see it was 2015. Cannot be 100% sure but I guess that description on how legacy protocol ZebraLink is working. It may still be supported in legacy printers bit it is outdated now.

                           

                          I can see your point about single point of failure. Would Cloud Connect be a reasonable option for you?

                          With browser print your printer don't have to be connected via USB to a local PC. You can use a network printer as well.

                          This way you would be able to print from any client computer in the network.

                           

                          Dmitry Prokhorov

                          Software Engineer, Kutir Mobility

                          Posted on behalf of Zebra Technologies

                          • Re: Review of "printing from browser" methods
                            Manuel Caicedo-Rivera

                            Mattia,

                             

                            I saw you read the document Zebra Web Printing Solutions, In pages 3,4, 5 we explain how you can use the printer in a network, even for that case you do not need to use our SDK for the implementation, the only recommendation is that this configuration works behind firewalls, or in other words in an internal network.

                             

                            We do not really recommend to work with HTTP calls, there are many limitations (Robin explains that in her blog), and it is unidirectional connection, you cannot get status of the printer before or during printing. 

                             

                            Cloud Connect will work basically with Zebra Link-OS features, this type with cloud connection does not work for Zebralink printers or legacy.

                             

                            If you really want to select a printer for your project from the two options you described, we would recommend to use the ZD500 because it is a Link-OS printer. Otherwise, you can also check our portfolio of the newer desktop printers on the link below.

                            Desktop Printers | Zebra

                             

                            Thanks,

                            MC