2 Replies Latest reply on Apr 19, 2013 12:44 PM by Michael Ward

    API for managing Pharos devices and queues?


      I'm really glad to see that Pharos created a user community. Printing Management seems like a lost art these days, so it's great to have a venue to talk about it. Anyway...


      We provide a central service to other units in the organization that allows them to leverage our print chargeback system. As a result, we must define and manage their print queues in Pharos. We currently have 200+ printers in the system. As you can imagine, managing the settings and configuration of all these queues can be a somewhat tedious process, so we're trying to find a way shift into a self-service model instead of having units e-mail us when things need to be changed or added. Ideally, we would like to provide a way for participants to define their own printers and queues, but while adhering to some of our rules. For example, we have a specific naming scheme for the pharos printers and queues that we follow. Additionally, we don't want to maintain a separate print server for every unit, as that could create significant maintenance overhead. The user rights management that Pharos introduced in 8.2 was definitely a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, we need to maintain a bit more control over how users define print queues.


      We have considered designing a simple web interface that would allow units to define their own printers and queues, then apply permissions to the print queue itself so that they can manage documents and printer settings. However, we'd like to have some sort of way to do this in Pharos, rather than creating the print queues and then mucking about in the Pharos database in order to add them to Pharos. Is there a supported way to do this? Additionally, I'd be interested to hear if anyone else is responsible for a similar print chargeback service, and how they are coordinating it.



        • Re: API for managing Pharos devices and queues?
          Julian Sharpe Newbie

          Thanks for your email. Currently there is no public API which supports the addition of devices and queues. However I would like to understand more about your problem to see we can come up with a solution.


          The new permissions system was intended for scenarios similar to your site. If you could define permissions without having to create servers per unit would this be an acceptable solution?


          Julian Sharpe

          • Re: API for managing Pharos devices and queues?
            Michael Ward Wayfarer

            Sounds like a similar scenario to us. We manage around a thousand queues across a number of Pharos installations, which does get rather tedious at times. Currently when a new queue is required, a request is raised to have someone manually go into the Pharos Admin interface to create the device/queue and configure it etc. I'd like to delegate this responsibility out to our desktop support staff but as mentioned above there's currently no way to ensure they adhere to our naming conventions, business rules etc.


            I also considered creating a website for this, but abandoned the idea mainly due to the Windows complexities of managing printer queues and drivers, not to mention having to reverse engineer the Pharos DB to create queues etc.


            An API for doing this kind of thing would be great - we're currently migrating to a new Pharos version and having to recreate the thousand-odd queues in the new system is tedious to say the least.