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Automating Printer selection

Question asked by RickWhitelaw on Jan 11, 2010
Latest reply on Jan 21, 2010 by RickWhitelaw


Automating Printer selection


I've posted on this topic before and have a couple of ideas and questions. I've found a way to capture printer names. So far this involves some user tedium. I've set up a table called Printers. So far it's an unrelated table with two global text fields (indexed): Printer 1 and Printer 2. Manually at this point the process involves, let's say for "Printer 1", doing a Replace Field Contents with Get(PrinterName) then opening System Preferences (BTW this is Mac OS X 10.6.2 w/FMPA 10v3), changing the default printer, then performing the Replace Field Contents on "Printer 2". Then, of course, go back to System Preferences and set the default printer to the one you really want. Now the printer names are stored and available to be used in any number of ways. All of this can be accomplished via simple Filemaker scripting except for the System Preferences part. However, there is an Applescript library for the app, so perhaps I'll try that route.

My question: the next part, addressing the print dialog in effect, is looking tricky. Basically after setting up a printing preferences table that will pair up certain printers with certain "task types" (this is not a problem) I need to find a way of passing this data on to the OS since it seems the Print dialog really is part of the OS and not Filemaker (this IS a problem). Can anyone suggest a place to start, or a set of tools to use? I'm quite familiar with FM but not versed in other programming languages. I'm willing to study!