Setting up a printer for WAVE

WAVE 's printing capabilities (see Printing) require that the WAVE host be able to print PostScript. Your WAVE host may already be set up to do this if its default printer is a PostScript printer. (Under Solaris, make sure that the directory containing the BSD command lpr is in your PATH.)

If the printer itself is incapable of rendering PostScript, you may still be able to use it if it is supported by Ghostscript (a freely available PostScript interpreter). Ghostscript is included in executable and portable C source form in most if not all Linux distributions, and is also available from many sources, including its own web site and its mirrors, CTAN, and other archives of GNU software. Ghostscript supports a wide variety of ink jet, dot matrix, and laser printers including popular models made by Canon, Epson, Hewlett Packard, IBM, and others; it can also render PostScript into files in a wide variety of graphics formats, including PBM, PGM, PPM, PCX, and TIFF (including G3 fax format - with a fax modem, you can even print PostScript output on any fax machine). Ghostscript works by rasterizing Postscript input on the host system, then transmitting the raster image to the printer in whatever format the printer accepts. For details on setting up Ghostscript for your printer, see the documentation that comes with Ghostscript, or the Linux Printing-HOWTO.

Assuming that the WAVE host is somehow able to print PostScript output (either directly to a PostScript printer, or via Ghostscript or another interpreter), setup for WAVE is straightforward:

In most cases, you will want to add the commands needed to set these variables to your .login or .profile file on the WAVE host, so that they are executed automatically whenever you log in. For details on setting environment variables, see the discussion of the DISPLAY variable.

If you are using WAVE remotely, you may prefer to use a local printer for your output. WAVE has no specific support for doing so, but this can often be arranged if, for example, your own computer is able to make its printer available for printing from the WAVE host (this is can be done easily if your computer runs any version of UNIX, or with somewhat more difficulty if it runs Microsoft Windows). In this case, usually all that is needed is to set PRINTER to the name of your printer (as it is known to the WAVE host). Another possibility is to set PSPRINT and TEXTPRINT to commands that capture output in a file, and then transfer the file to your own computer (via FTP or any other method) for local printing. For example, you might set PSPRINT to `cat »output.ps' and TEXTPRINT to `cat »output.txt'. These commands accumulate all PostScript output into output.ps, and all text output into output.txt, so you should delete these files from the WAVE host after copying them to your computer, so they don't grow indefinitely.

If you need to change printers or print commands while running WAVE , this can be easily accomplished within WAVE 's Print setup window, which may be opened by selecting Print setup from the \ovalbox{\rule[-.3mm]{0cm}{2.5mm}\small\sf ~File~\ensuremath{\nabla}~} menu.

George B. Moody (george@mit.edu)
2014-03-13