[Scribus] (OT) Printing PDFs

John Jason Jordan johnxj
Sun Jan 7 20:23:43 CET 2007

In the hopes that a Scribus user may be able to help, I am posting my
problem here, although the problem happens with all PDFs, not just
those created with Scribus, so it's not really a Scribus issue.

Platform is Ubuntu Dapper amd-64. Printer is HP Laserjet 8000DN. 

I use this printer as a printing press. The printer has just about
every option, including input capacity of 3,000 sheets and output
stacker that will hold 3,000 sheets. Its rated speed for duplexed
printing is 22 ppm. 

When printing from Adobe Reader on Windows it prints the first copy at
about 15 ppm and subsequent copies at 21.8 ppm. I can tell it to print
100 copies of a 500-page book collated and it will spend the next
several days doing so. All I have to do is add/remove paper every few
hours. I am printing short run textbooks from PDF files. Ultimately I
plan to switch to Scribus for layout, but I will still want to export
to PDF and print from the PDF files.

The printer has a feature common on modern high end lasers -- "RIP
once, print many." When you add sufficient RAM (or a hard disk) to the
printer, the printer will image each page of a print job and hold that
image internally. Thus, the first copy may print slowly, as each page
must be imaged, but subsequent copies will print at the rated speed of
the printer. I am unable to do this satisfactorily from Linux.

If I print from Adobe Reader, either the Linux version (7.0.8) or the
Windows version via CrossOver Office (7.0.5), I have two options. I can
use an lp or lpr command and insert -n or -# to the command, or I can
use the print dialog box to specify the number of copies and check the
Collated box. If I use the lp or lpr command it does not access the
"RIP once, print many" feature. It will print the specified number of
copies and they will be collated, but each copy will print at only
about 15 ppm because it must re-image the job for each copy. I have
read all the documentation I can find on the lp and lpr commands, but I
cannot find a way to tell it to use "RIP once, print many."
Furthermore, if I shut down the computer (a laptop), the print job
ceases, because evidently the lp or lpr command is sending the job over
and over again for the specified number of copies.

If I use the print dialog box it will concatenate individual print jobs
into a massive spool file. Again, I cannot shut down the computer
without stopping the print job, and it must re-image each copy, and in
addition I need space to hold a spool file of several GB.

If I use Kpdf it works properly, that is, it prints with "RIP once,
print many." This is an important fact, because it means that accessing
this feature from Linux must be possible. Kpdf is using the drivers I
have installed via CUPS using the latest PPD file. However, when I use
Kpdf it prints the first job glacially slowly -- about two minutes per
page. So if I tell it to print 100 copies of a 500 page book, it will
take all day to print the first copy (about 12 hours), although the
remaining 99 copies will print at about 23 minutes per copy. If I could
figure out why Kpdf is so slow on the first copy it would solve my
problem. I have googled and searched everywhere, and I have posted a
question on the KDE forums, but have not received any answers.

Hence my interest in the other thread where Ghostview was mentioned.
However, it only uses an lp or lpr command, which I cannot get to
access "RIP once, print many."

If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them. I'd love to be
able to ditch Windows completely.

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