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  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
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    Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    I am using an HP LaserJet 1200 printer and I am printing reports from a DOS program and find that all of a sudden my page length has shrunk to about 60 lines (from the standard 64 lines), so a single page report now prints over two pages. Clearly something has changed, because using the same printer, this used to work fine with Windows 98 and XP Pro when I first upgraded, but I have no idea where to look.

    I have set compatibility mode to Windows 98, downloaded the latest HP PCL6 driver, tried HP PCL5e and XP's own driver, all with the same results.

    Any suggestions would be most appreciated.

  2. #2
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    Does your DOS program generate HP PCL commands (if you know what these are!)?

    If you were to set up your (PCL 5e or BELOW) printer driver to print "to file" and looked at the start of the print file with an editor/file viewer (NOTEPAD would do) you might find one or more commands which define the page size (A4 or Letter), and the page length in lines OR the "vertical motion index" OR the number of lines per inch vertically. These would precede the first line of the text you are printing, and each starts with an ESCape character, 0x1B, decimal 27, which probably shows as a solid black rectangle in NOTEPAD.

    If you can post the start of the file here as a Text attachment, I could comment on them.

    Before doing anything, I presume that you have powered the printer on and off before trying to print from your DOS program...? There may be some "residual PCL commands" there which could throw your DOS program's printing out if its first command to the printer is NOT a PCL Reset command...
    <font face="Script MT Bold"><font color=blue><big><big>John</big></big></font color=blue></font face=script>

    Ita, esto, quidcumque...

  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    It sounds as if the printer default paper size may have switched from A4 to Legal - typical of the sort of thing that happens when you upgrade the printer driver!

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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    Leif's theory might be even better than mine, since Letter paper is 18 mm shorter than A4...

    See International Standard Paper Sizes, passim.
    <font face="Script MT Bold"><font color=blue><big><big>John</big></big></font color=blue></font face=script>

    Ita, esto, quidcumque...

  5. #5
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    Interesting. Despite *meaning* Letter, I wrote Legal - but you seem to have read my mind! Legal, of course, is about 3" (in old money) longer than Letter....

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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    Thank you both!

    Your suggestions encouraged me to look more carefully at the printer properties and I discovered that my LPT1 port referred not to my LaserJet 1200, but to a "printer" installed with another program that I added recently. Although the paper setting was A4 for both printers and not Letter (although I agree, it behaved as if Letter was selected), deleting that other "printer" removed it from the LPT1 port listing for the LaserJet 1200 and magically fixed the paper length problem.

    I hope all that makes sense. The "bottom line" here is that thanks to you guys, your prompt response and the fact that you care, my problem is solved.

    I wish I could return the favour!!

  7. #7
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    Re: Page length shrunk to 60 lines (XP Pro SP1)

    I think I can speak also for Leif (I can, can't I, Leif?) and say that we're very pleased you have solved the problem!

    From a distance it isn't always obvious what devious feature has crept in without you knowing it!
    <font face="Script MT Bold"><font color=blue><big><big>John</big></big></font color=blue></font face=script>

    Ita, esto, quidcumque...

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