Installing the Document Converter Print Drivers

The document converter includes one general-purpose printer driver and two extra printer drivers which can be installed and configured for special applications which need to handle more complex documents.  The extra printer drivers are normally selected by the $convert_options keyword ResConv.

CopiaFacts can now convert most document types without needing the Document Converter Print Driver installed.  See the table of conversion options in the topic Supported Document Formats.

The standard printer driver converts directly to fax format.  The extra drivers are configured to emulate either an existing printer with higher resolution or a built-in 300x300 printer, and the image is then converted to the appropriate high-res or low-res fax as needed.  This may produce a more reliable and accurate result for complex documents which embed either high-res images or (in the case of Excel documents) high-res printer settings.

The selected printer driver may be set as the system default printer at conversion time, and if it was not already the default printer, the previous setting is not restored. You should therefore try to ensure that document conversions are done on a machine which is not needed for normal printing tasks.

These printer drivers are reserved for use by CopiaFacts Document Converter applications and will not produce output if selected manually for printed output.  Only Microsoft Office documents, HTML conversions using Internet Explorer, and PDF documents converted using an Adobe product, require a printer driver: other conversions create a TIF file directly.

The CVSINGLE program runs (automates) the Office or Adobe application and causes it to print to the driver.  Then the FFCVRT program is called by the driver and communicates with CVSINGLE to set the output file name and other options.  CVSINGLE converts a single document at a time.  Only one instance of CVSINGLE can be running at the same time.

FFCVRT uses FFTRACE to enable status and debugging messages. However the messages do not appear in the FFTRACE window in Windows Vista, Windows 2008, Windows7 and later.  Instead they are written to a trace file FFCVRT.FTx in the FFMERGE common folder (if FFMERGE is installed) or in the folder specified by an FFTRC system environment variable.  To view trace messages, use TRCVIEW.

"Copia Fax Converter" Printer Driver

For most applications, the standard Document Converter Print driver (named 'Copia Fax Converter') will suffice to handle all conversions that use a print driver.

The driver is installed by the CopiaFacts server installer when you select Document Converter and the sub-option 'Standard Document Converter Print Driver'. Check that the new 'printer' shows up in your Printers special folder.

The installer will set initial default options for document handling, including setting Letter 'paper' size if the locale is USA and A4 otherwise.  You may wish to experiment with other dithering parameters, which can affect the quality and size of output images and colored areas.

Printer Default Resolution

For historical reasons conversions which use the Copia Fax Converter Printer Driver default to use 200x200 resolution, because several Windows applications printed better with this setting.  However this does produce slight dimensional distortion and most applications can now handle 204x196.

The default resolution can be overridden globally in an environment variable or using $environment, setting DEFAULT_CONVERTER_RES to one of the values 200x200, 204x196 or 204x98. The last value is for use if the majority of your conversions are to be to low-resolution faxes.

For individual faxes, you can set one of the above values in an FS file variable CONVERTER_RES.

The Printer Driver output compression format for TIF files is Modified Huffman (MH) which can be transmitted on all supported boards.  [Note that the default for the Internal PDF Converter is MMR which is not supported on Trufax boards.]

Printer Page Size

From build 8.1.0.108, the printer page size is set for each conversion, by default to US Letter if the locale is USA and A4 otherwise.  The default page size can be overridden globally in an environment variable or using $environment, setting DEFAULT_CONVERTER_PAGE to one of the keywords or numbers in the first column of the table below.

You may use other numbers representing one of the standard Windows paper sizes (see this Microsoft link), but many of the Windows paper sizes will not produce a valid faxable TIF output file, so this is not recommended.

For individual conversions, you can set one of the keywords or numbers in an FS file variable CONVERTER_PAGE.  For specific conversion applications, you can also set the printer page size automatically depending on the size of the original document to be converted.  This is done by using the $convert_options keywords AdobeSETP, ExcelSETP, PPTSETP, or WordSETP.  These option keywords cause the printer page size in conversions of the appropriate type to be set based on the page size of the original document. If the document contains multiple different page sizes, only the first is examined.

For conversions using other applications with the Document Converter Print Driver, no automatic page size setting is available and the default or override page size is used.  This affects Internet Explorer, Firefox, the Internal HTTP converter and Libre Office conversions.

The following page sizes have been tested to produce valid faxable TIF output, and only pages of these sizes will cause the printer page size to be set using the 'SETP' keywords.  When you specify one of the SETP keywords in $convert_options, pages other than the sizes below will be output using the default page size.  The content may be shrunk, expanded, or truncated depending on the Windows application which is being automated, and its settings.

Keyword

Name

PDF Units (1/72")

Inches

Millimeters

Fax Width (pixels)

Letter or 1

Letter

612.00 by 792.00

8.5 by 11

215.9 by 279.4

1728

Legal or 5

Legal

612.00 by 1008.00

8.5 by 14

215.9 by 355.6

1728

A4 or 9

A4

595.44 by 842.04

8.27 by 11.69

210 by 297

1728

A3 or 8

A3

842.04 by 1190.52

11.69 by 16.54

297 by 420

2432

B4JIS or 12

B4 JIS

728.64 by 1032.12

10.12 by 14.33

257 by 364

2048

B4ISO or 42

B4 ISO

708.84 by 1000.80

9.84 by 13.90

250 by 353

2048

B5 or 62/80

B5 JIS (landscape)

728.64 by 515.88

10.12 by 7.17

257 by 182

2048

A5 or 11

A5 (landscape)

595.55 by 419.40

8.27 by 5.83

210 by 148

1728

The size tolerance is ±18 PDFunits (1/4",  6mm) for each dimension.  If a dimension is outside the tolerance, the output will be the default size and may be truncated.

Landscape pages other than A5 and B5 are rotated to fit on a portrait page.  You can select landscape as the default or override paper orientation by adding the word Landscape to the keyword or number.  This option should be regarded as for special purposes only.

Examples:

$environment * DEFAULT_CONVERTER_PAGE 9    ; select A4

$var_def CONVERTER_PAGE "Letter Landscape" ; select Letter Landscape

Resolution Conversion Printer Drivers

The two optional printer drivers are named 'Copia Fax RCH Printer Driver' and 'Copia Fax RCL Printer Driver'.  These printers are configured for Resolution Conversion and may optionally configured manually to emulate an already installed printer.

To configure the printer driver for emulation, first select each in turn in the Devices and Printers area of Control Panel, right-click, and select Printer Properties for the printer:

Then in Device Settings, you can optionally select an already installed printer to emulate.  We recommend the Microsoft XPS Document writer, which will be installed with recent versions of Office. This has 600x600 resolution capability and also has no 'unprintable regions'.  Click OK after selecting the printer.  If you do not want to emulate a specific printer, select "(Classic FAX Resolutions)".

Next, right-click each printer in turn and select Printing Preferences, then Advanced:

There are three settings of significance:  first, make sure that Resolution Conversion is enabled:

Then select Resolution reported to Windows NT.  The pulldown content will depend on the printer selected.  Set it to 300x300 or 600x600:

Finally, select Output Resolution, and set it to 204x196 for the RCH printer and 204x98 for the RCL printer.  OK out of the two dialogs.

These settings will allow the document to be printed at a resolution expected by applications such as Office, but will then optimize the conversion of the document to a faxable resolution in the driver.

If you wish, you can also use the above procedure for other Copia printer drivers.  However we do not recommend the use of this technique for the FFMERGE driver.