Is your printing scripted or just from the user going to the file menu?
If scripted, did you make any modifications to the script? Perhaps a setting changed there?
I assume this is on Windows? I've had a weird issue where a script is set to print to the default printer… but then the default printer needs to change (main printer is down for maintenance, for instance). We change the default printer in the control panel, but FMP still tries printing to the old default. Shutting down FMP, or even restarting the PC does not fix it. The only way to change it was to delete the old (formerly default) printer from the control panel. Then repeat to switch it back.
In my experience the most reliable way to get consistent output from FM is to script your printing and make sure all printer settings that you require are explicitly set in the script; this can include printing without dialog if you are sure the script is always spot on to requirements. You may have to put a button on your layouts and train your users to click that rather than using the standard menu command or keyboard shortcut, but if they can remember to reset the printer default each day they should be able to cope with that. Better still, if you have FMAdvanced you can create a custom menu and reassign the menu commands and keyboard shortcuts to run your script; then the users don't even have to know!
This is by manual use of File|Print. And it worked even on these printers until the other day. Maybe some Windows update changed something. Given your experience maybe reinstalling the printer and making sure it's on draft before the first time FM is opened. Worth a try.
I could control it more, by script or menu. Seems kind of silly since till now it's been a simple enough part of the db that File|Print was fine. Not sure about part of this though. When I create a Print step it allows me to choose options for existing printers. They didn't have these printers when the db was setup, and who knows what they'll have in the future. This 1010 has a half dozen quality settings so getting FM to anticipate any new printers with unexpected choices is an issue. I could get kludgy and have a msg direct them to be sure to choose draft and then open a print dialog. A kludge to get around some failure of I'm not sure what, Windows, HP, FM. (Or they could buy the better printers I suggested.)
Re: "some failure of I'm not sure what, Windows, HP, FM"
The failure certainly won't be within FM; once you print via the file menu everything is then controlled at OS level. Maybe some user of their printer reset things at some stage and then that became the default settings for the printer.
Re: "When I create a Print step it allows me to choose options for existing printers"
What I would do is embed in the script the options you want to use for that printer, then add a message that says: "Are you going to use XX printer?" and then have your script branch based on their response. If they say yes, deploy your preset scripted options; if not, go to the standard print dialog and let them set whatever they want. If they then do get the better printer you can reset the relevant parts of your script to refer to the new printer.
I'm not convince it isn't FM. Every other program I open, I go to the print dialog and find it is on the default setting, draft. Only in FM is it not on the printer default.
OK, just did a check myself. On my system it appears FM defaults to its own last used settings for some, though not all, options you apply in the print dialog box. I wonder if FM retains some print setting options internally somewhere in its brain? Does anyone know?
I had this problem with other programs along with FM. What I do is this:
Exit all programs
Open PRINTERS and FAXES from Control Panel (may also be in the Start Menu)
Right click on the printer you are using and select Printing Preferences
Set the preferences as desired (such as Draft Mode)
Now when any program, including FM, uses that printer the settings will be defaulted to what you set them to.
The programs apparently reset any set preferences at startup to whatever the system default settings are at.
Just remember that those settings will apply to other programs as well. But many programs save modified preferences
with the saved document, just depends on whether whoever wrote the program chose to do so.
That's exactly what FM, and only FM, is ignoring in this case. The system wide default is set to draft. FM prints in Normal anyway unless you tell it draft the first time, then it retains that till FM closes. Next time it opens have to do the same.
Glad to hear I'm not crazy and someone could replicate it. So it's not just saving how it was last used because that was draft but next time I run FM it's back to Normal. I tried editing the form on a station with that kind of printer, and in edit mode set Print Setup to draft, made a minor change on the form just to force it to ask to save, saved it. No difference. Can't figure out where it's getting this insistance on Normal print mode.
It might be a bit of a pain, but I reiterate my original point: a properly constructed print script will solve the problem. If FM behaves differently from other programs then you'd best solve it using FM's resources. And as I previously said, you can (if you have FMAdvanced) create a custom menu and redirect the standard menu and keyboard shortcut Print commands to implement that script. Even if the script does nothing more than set the draft option for you, you will have made progress.