Hardware/software between computer and laser printer...?

it seems a few years ago, that i worked with a designer who worked with huge files, and they had a piece of hardware/software/something? that did something basically like this: took their huge job (from indesign or photoshop) from their computer, to a secondary location/hardware (rip? spooler?) which freed up their computer, then when it was ready, it printed to their laser printer…all the while freeing up the first computer.

anyone know what is that called and am i explaining it correctly? thanks! :slight_smile:

Yes, what you’re describing is called a spooler — at least that’s what I’ve always heard it called.

When I worked at a newspaper, each day on deadline, dozens of pages would be sent within minutes of each other to the back shop output devices. They went into a spooler, where they were queued up and output according to various priority rules that the spooler juggled.

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thank you! do you remember… was it a separate piece of hardware? that’s what I was thinking…

is this still a current process/function?

I’m fairly sure it was a separate computer in the situation I mentioned. I wouldn’t think that it would necessarily need to be, though. Spooling a file would just entail offloading it from the computer’s memory to a holding location while it waited for the next process to kick in.

I don’t know if it’s a current thing. I suspect that it is. I wouldn’t be surprised if @PrintDriver knows something about this since he works in a segment of the industry where large format digital printing can involve a lot of time.

For that matter, if several people send separate files to a networked office printer at about the same time, those files, I supposed, could said to be spooled as they wait their turn in the queue.

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Rip Server, but it might be more robust than you need in your situation.
Very good explanation here.

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thank you!! :slight_smile:


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