Posts tagged SafeCom

So… more on printing. Alongside documenting the service (and cobbling a nice new stylesheet together to replace the old, somewhat kludgy one) I’ve been doing some work with a stopwatch on the relative speeds of SMB vs IPP/HTTP and IPP/HTTPS. The results are slightly unusual.

  • SMB – Printing from Ubuntu and OS X is under 10 seconds for most jobs.
  • IPP/HTTP – Very fast from Windows, but Ubuntu and OS X normally around the region of 30-40 seconds.
  • IPP/HTTPS – Very fast from Windows, but Ubuntu and OS X normally in the region of 15 minutes. Yes, minutes.

I really need to convince people that SMB is a viable solution and isn’t the massive security risk they seem to think it is. It’s faster, easier and more efficient, at least until I can work out how to make a *nix CUPS server talk to SafeCom.

We’ve finally come up with a working print solution for use on-campus, with support for off-campus users not far behind! Yes, coming soon (as soon as we’ve gone through a meeting, approved it and built some nice tidy servers without all our development detritus on them) you’ll be able to use your own Windows, OS X or Linux laptop from anywhere within the Campus WiFi to print using the University printers!

“But how?” I hear you cry. “We thought it was impossible because Windows Server 2003 has such a ridiculous implementation of the IPP standard!”.

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Hooray, it’s Freshers’ Week! Today involves having to negotiate the swarms of scared looking freshers as they look in a confused manner at maps of campus. It’s also the day when ICT is watching the servers nervously, as 10,000 students all try to retrieve their (still not published, so don’t bother) newly published timetables. Here’s an important message: don’t panic. If you get lost or confused just grab a helpful looking person and 9 times out of 10 they’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.

In the slower-paced world of Online Services R&D my task for today (in between the mind-numbing tedium of SU induction workshops) is to iron out the last few kinks in the printing implementation, more specifically those to do with user rights. Once that is done I can get cracking with test servers and get a functional SafeCom system working. Despite needing to dip in and out of the office this week to attend inductions, welcome backs and Freshers’ Fayre (come visit Drama Society, we’re awesome!) I realistically hope to have a workable solution in place by the start of term next Monday.

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