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Samba HowTo Guide
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PostScript Printer Description (PPD) Specification

While PostScript in essence is a PDL to represent the page layout in a device-independent way, real-world print jobs are always ending up being output on hardware with device-specific features. To take care of all the differences in hardware and to allow for innovations, Adobe has specified a syntax and file format for PostScript Printer Description (PPD) files. Every PostScript printer ships with one of these files.

PPDs contain all the information about general and special features of the given printer model: Which different resolutions can it handle? Does it have a duplexing unit? How many paper trays are there? What media types and sizes does it take? For each item, it also names the special command string to be sent to the printer (mostly inside the PostScript file) in order to enable it.

Information from these PPDs is meant to be taken into account by the printer drivers. Therefore, installed as part of the Windows PostScript driver for a given printer is the printer's PPD. Where it makes sense, the PPD features are presented in the drivers' UI dialogs to display to the user a choice of print options. In the end, the user selections are somehow written (in the form of special PostScript, PJL, JCL, or vendor-dependent commands) into the PostScript file created by the driver.

Samba HowTo Guide
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