IHS XES conversions


IHS Xerox printer conversions

How to upgrade from Old Xerox Laser Printers

In the late 70's and early 80's, Xerox started to sell desktop and floor model laser printers driven by their own printer language, known as Xerox Escape Sequence (XES) but also known by users as UDK code. Since most printers were attached directly to mainframe computers, these XES printer codes were programmed into the software applications that created the pages to be printed on the Xerox printers.

This family of Xerox printers has been at its End of Life and now approaches End of Service. In the early 90s, Xerox offered users some conversion tools, but linked them only to new Xerox printers. Now support is been terminated for this family of printers and converters, as parts become hard to get, technicians are assigned to new responsibilities or retire, and interest for new printers is directed towards Postscript and PCL.

The Xerox printer models that have been or will be End of Serviced shortly are:
Floor models: 4235, 4235, 3700, 2700 and the XES Server with the 4220/4230 printers.
Desktop models: 4213, 4197(MICR), 4030, 4045, 4011

IHS Systems Corp. has been a leader since 1993 in providing independent software solutions for replacing aging Xerox printers.

Our conversion solutions enable Xerox users to use new laser printers in place of their old Xerox printers WITHOUT having to rewrite their print applications that use the XES/UDK commands!

The udk2pcl Print Conversion software provides a plug-n-play solution to replace Xerox XES based printers. Print jobs with Xerox Escape Sequence (XES) or User Defined Key (UDK) based print commands are converted by the udk2pcl Print Conversion software, into PCL commands and printed on PCL printers to match the original print job.

The conversion software is available two ways:

1. udk2pcl Print Converter
A stand-alone Plug N Play solution installed to support the conversion requirements for one printer. The udk2pcl Print Conversion software is installed in a small PC chassis placed next to the printer. Print jobs are received from the mainframe, generally through a protocol converter with parallel output. Our special Centronics Parallel Input Board accepts input in the same manner as a printer. Any protocol converter that converts to Centronics parallel can be attached to this interface as a source of printer input. As the print data is received, it is converted to PCL and sent to the new printer's parallel port. Fonts and forms are sent with the data as needed.
The udk2pcl software also supports serial input using XON/XOFF up to 19.2 KB.

 Good for:

  1. Plug and Play replacement of old Xerox printers on an as needed basis.
  2. Replacing remote printers not on a Local Area Network
  3. Applications that are created in pieces and sent to the printer separately
  4. High volume printers, since it can give dedicated service
2. udkServe Print Conversion Software
A LAN based software solution installed on a dedicated user workstation. It translates XES/UDK based print jobs for any number of printers on a network. The udkServe Software License is based upon the speed at which the translated data is outputted to the print queue on the LAN.
Print jobs are sent to the udkServe Workstation via TCP/IP as an independent process and saved in a unique directory for each printer to be supported.
udkServe, running independently, checks the unique file directories for files to convert. If no files are found in a directory, it goes to the next directory specified to check in a command file. When udkServe finds a file in a directory, the print stream is translated by the udk2pcl Print Conversion software to an output file in PCL format including all necessary fonts and forms used by the job. Commands are then executed to route the converted output file to the desired printer's print queue on its print server so that the file will print on the desired printer. This cycle is repeated for each printer supported by udkServe.
Each printer can have its own setup files to control default fonts, margins, tray pulls, forms, duplex, etc. as well as what forms and font libraries to use that may be unique to that printer..

Good for:

  1. Printing small print jobs to ANY printer attached to the Local Area Network (LAN)
  2. Centrally located, no extra hardware needed with each printer on LAN
Benefits of the udk2pcl/UdkServe Solution

1. Flexibility

The user is no longer restricted to using dedicated printers to print their applications using XES (Xerox Escape Sequence) print commands. Print jobs can be routed to print on many Xerox printers attached to a LAN
2. Save Money Quick payback
A. Protect your investment in printer applications.
Print applications DO NOT have to be changed for the new printer! The existing print jobs will look the same on the new Xerox printer, selected for the speed and tray options required. The same fonts and forms that are currently in production will be used and handled in the same way. udk2pcl will support special Xerox applications including RPMF and XPAF, as well as mainframe plotting packages such as Telegraf that printed to Xerox XES printers.

B. Printer related costs will be lower.

  • Lower annual maintenance costs
  • Lower cost/page for consumables
  • Lower power costs
  • Eliminate unnecessary connectivity costs (such as 3270 controllers, phone lines, mainframe equipment, etc.) when using a LAN instead.
  • C. No retraining needed
    No retraining required for maintaining and developing new print applications using the XES print commands. XES print commands are already understood rather than having to spend time and money to learn new print languages.

    D. Duplex Printing
    udk2pcl supports XES/UDK commands such as head-to-head duplex and head-to-toe duplex. This feature is available to any new Xerox printer that supports duplex, but was not commonly available on old XES based printers.
    Save money on paper and shipping costs, if reports are distributed by mail or courier.

    3. Improved Printer Throughput.
    Faster printing means improved productivity.
    udk2pcl passes converted XES jobs to the printer as fast as the printer can accept them.
    udkServe creates print files that print at the rated speed of each printer because print files are routed through the printer's print server.
    4. Printers can do DOUBLE duty.
    Dedicated printers for mainframe print will not be necessary.
    Printers will be able to print XES/UDK jobs from the mainframe AND they can print jobs from a Local Area Network by taking advantage of the input port switching.
    5. Greater reliability and higher quality output
    Less time is lost due to breakdowns, because new laser printers are more reliable. Most of the key parts of the printer are replaced when routine consumables are replaced by the user in just a few minutes.
    The output looks better because of the new printer technologies and higher print resolutions available on new laser printers.
    6. More installation flexibility
    udk2pcl Print Converters can be used for:
    a) Plug and Play replacement of old Xerox printers on an as needed basis.
    b) Replacing remote printers not on a Local Area Network
    c) Applications that are created in pieces and sent to the printer separately
    d) High Volume printers, since it can give dedicated service

    udkServe software can be used for:
    a) Printing small print jobs to ANY printer attached to the LAN
      b) Centrally located, no extra hardware needed with each printer on LAN

    The same software, at its core, is used in both solutions. One company supports all the configurations needed.

    7. The solution is designed to be plug and play

    A. Applications are pre-tested
    We recommend that the key applications be tested before the udk2pcl or udkServe solution is installed, then all the resources needed to run the work are accounted for and tested. The user's font and forms library are created.
    Once a configuration is established that meets user requirements, it is easy to deliver plug and play solutions.

    B.The fonts will be the same
    The XES language relies on the font parameters to properly process its commands. Print jobs will look the same because the XES fonts are translated dot for dot to match the original. Full ISO Xerox font support is provided in the same manner as the Xerox printers implemented it. Foreign languages are fully supported. Special logo or signature fonts do not need to be recreated. Fonts are converted and stored from the original Xerox fonts "on the fly in production or using a separate program provided. Fonts can be in ASCII or EBCDIC format. Your fonts can be extracted from 3700 backup disks or 4045 cartridges.

    8. Emulations based on experience
    Each of the different models of Xerox XES printers implemented the language with small, but undocumented differences. The udk2pcl/udkServe software has been used for over eight years and by 3,000 users. This installed base has enabled many of the undocumented "features" of the way that the XES works on the different model printers to be incorporated into the udk2pcl/udkServe software. The desired printer personality can be selected for all jobs or on a job by job basis.
    9. Support is built in
    In the event an application does not print correctly, a Capture capability is provided, to save the actual print job that is not printing correctly.This Captured file can be sent to us by e-mail to analyze. Rather than a HEX dump, the actual file enables us to test any updates to the software BEFORE we send the release out for use. The Capture software is an important tool to give users quick response and accurate resolution to problems.
    How our solutions are packaged:

    A small PC chassis is used to hold the Parallel Input or 3270 coax boards and provide the udk2pcl conversion software to output PCL files via LPT1 to the printer. No keyboard or monitor is required. One year of limited warranty and support are included. Extended warranty and support is available at 15% of purchase price per year or on a Time & Materials basis.

    udkServe Workstation
    This will handle any number of printers with a throughput rate starting at 75 ppm to at least 500 ppm. The throughput is determined by the number of printers to be supported, as well as, the speed and the volume of print pages to be converted in a given amount of time. The Workstation includes lpd software to receive TCP/IP print jobs and udkServe conversion software running on a tower or rack mount chassis with redundant power supplies and mirrored RAID hard drives, with a third drive as backup, color monitor, keyboard, mouse and battery backup.
    One year of limited warranty and support is included.

    What we need for a Proof of Concept demo

    1. Profile of the Xerox printer to be replaced.
    Configuration pages or System Default Report
    Font list, Form list (if any), Graphics list (if any)

    2. The font and form files sent to the printer originally or backup copies of these files stored on the printer's hard disk.

    3. The print files used to create forms and save them on the printer's hard disk.
    These can be captured on some printers or we can provide a unit to capture the sample print data. Hardcopy sample prints from the printer.

    4. Samples of key print applications
    a.) Hard copy output from the existing Xerox printer
    b.) Sample print data received by the Xerox printer for the same applications.

    5. Description of what paper trays are used.
    Samples of preprinted paper used by the applications

    6. Description of how the Xerox printer is connected to the mainframe computer now, identifying all the components used.

    7. Description of the new printer planned and how it will get its print data.
      What paper trays on the new printer should respond to the original paper tray calls.