Reports slow across low bandwidth WAN

Have a problem with simple 2 page reports taking anything up to 12 minutes to print across a 64k WAN link. The same report printed locally takes seconds. Any ideas

You could use a product like uni-print and greatly speed up printing. First, I would check and see what the size is of the report you are printing.

Only about 1.4M

If you do the math, then 1.4 M over 64k is 3 minutes. That means your report is seeing something like 1/4 of the WAN. By the time you allow for overhead to get the printer started, and I assume that this is not the only thing on the WAN, the numbers add up. I have to agree with John either get more bandwidth or a proper printing solution.

Yeah David, 64k is not enough to give any margins. Uniprint will make that 1.4M document about 1/10th that size. You might also try printing direct-stop spooling and see if that helps. Spooling will increase the size of the print data.

Hey John, do you have a link to Uni Print, I know there are many of these products out there, but its always to here about one from someone that uses it. Guessing that you use it in a production environment, probably indicates that it works. Thanks.

David, here is the link to their site and a decent white paper on the product. There is also a white paper on the Citrix site comparing various 3rd party print solutions vs. Citrix Universal print drive. Can’t remember the exact location, but could find it if need be. Hope this helps.

Sorry about that. That link no longer works! Just go to the main page, and navigate from there. Decent product with 30 trial.

Thanks John, I will give it a try.

What will the uniprint product help on?? If i’ve properly understood, the problem is that they’re having a client connected to the server with a 64K line. The report is taking so much on printing not because the 1.4 megs of report are coming from the server, but because the data needed to create that report that’s coming from the server. The report takes the data from the server, but is ran locally on the machine, so if uniprint is a program just for handling printing itself, how it can help speeding it??? Will it make the navision data transfer faster??? The report will print as fast as the local machine can print it, but having to take the data from the server will take it more time if having to handle a lot of data. As example, try making a report that prints nothing but a single line but reads all the item ledger entry table… it will take a lot to be printed through that 64K line no matter if the final report is just a few K’s.

Hi ALfonso, The way printing works, is that basically Windows sends a sort of a text file to a printer driver, and then that Printer driver converts the data and sends it to the printer in the correct format. Since we assume that the printer is directly connected to the Printer driver (maybe through a LAN) there is not a big through put issue, so the system works OK. So you can see that if you convert a one page text file (say 2k + 10k of formatting) it easily becomes a 1.4M bit map. It is possible to intercept the data before it goes into the Print driver, send raw compressed data to a remote program that then regenerates the data as a print file. Its pretty technical, but trust those that know that it can be done. It really has nothing to do with compression, or any speeding up magic. In laymans terms for you, think of it as not sending the data faster, but sending less data to do the same job. The major differnece that you will see with this type of setup, is that you have printer drives installed on both ends of the print job, so set up is a bit more complex. Depending on the actual product, you may have a limited range of fonts, though some programms will upload fonts to the Server as required. (They also require an encryption system so that you can legally have the fonts intalled twice). I hope this helps. John maybe knows more about the specifics of Uniprint, and could help if you need more help I am sure.

Thanks for all the input. It does appear as though the issue is the fact that the client software makes various calls on the database and compiles the report on the client workstation, thus resulting in a significant amount of inforamtion bursts which are exaggerated over the WAN connection. I am looking at Uniprint as an option. It does appear that some form of terminal server also resolves the problem as the report generation then resides at the central site and only the actual print job traverses the WAN.

Glad to be of help.