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Printing in HTTPVNC

27 Sep 2014

Printing in terminal server environments is always painful. In order to change this for httpvnc, I implemented the following printing solution:

  • The httpvnc user prints (remotely) to a CUPS printer called "httpvnc". This is a small CUPS backend module that converts the printed data into a pdf and stores it in the filesystem on the server.
  • The user can now (locally) open the httpvnc RSS feed on his httpvnc access website. There, he will see all printed documents ready for download. By simply clicking on a document, he can download and open it locally. From here, the printing is nothing but a local matter anymore.
  • Using RSS feeds has the advantage that most browsers have the possibility to attach the feed entries (printed documents) into a sort of menu from where they can be easily selected.
  • Using PDF documents has the advantage that they will be printed exactly as they are, without the need to install any drivers for you printing environment on the server.
  • After some time, the printed documents are automatically deleted on the server in order to prevent the printing system from filling up.
Have fun!