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Create a Fake Printer to Enforce Printer Settings for Your Application

You want to use a specific printer setting from a program in Windows. This setting should not always be the default for other programs, but for this one program you want the printer to always behave a certain way. For example, you may want this program to always use Tray 2 for check printing.

Solution

You do this you need to create a “fake printer” that has your settings for this program.

The steps below are largely based on this older document; these steps have been updated and tested on Windows 7.

  1. Download and install the latest version of the following software:
  2. Set up the real printer with the necessary settings.  If you just need everything to use the same defaults, you can re-use your existing printer; but, if you need a special configuration (i.e. print to a specific tray), you’ll need to set up a new printer pointed at the same physical device and configured correctly for your needs.
  3. Create a new, local printer with a new port but select “Redirected Port” instead of local or network. Any Postscript driver should work; the “HP LaserJet 2300 Series PS” was used for this example. This will be the “fake” printer that  your software will print to so name it something reasonable.




  4. Edit the new printer’s properties, switch to the Ports tab, select the Redirected Port (RPT1 in this case) and click “Configure Port”.
  5. In the port properties, enter the path to gswin64c.exe (or gswin32c.exe if on a 32-bit machine) in the “Redirect this port to the program” field. In the arguments field, enter the following:
    -sOutputFile=”%printer%real printer” -sDEVICE=mswinpr2 –Note the dash at the end of that line; that is required.  You’ll want to replace real printer with the actual name of the printer you want to use.You’ll also want to set it to run hidden; otherwise, a blank window will open every time something prints to the “fake” printer

  6. Save the port config and print a test page to verify everything is working.

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