JP3519240B2 - Print control device and computer-readable storage medium - Google Patents

Print control device and computer-readable storage medium

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Publication number
JP3519240B2
JP3519240B2 JP10845697A JP10845697A JP3519240B2 JP 3519240 B2 JP3519240 B2 JP 3519240B2 JP 10845697 A JP10845697 A JP 10845697A JP 10845697 A JP10845697 A JP 10845697A JP 3519240 B2 JP3519240 B2 JP 3519240B2
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Japan
Prior art keywords
information file
means
print
computer
server computer
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Expired - Fee Related
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JP10845697A
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Japanese (ja)
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JPH10275064A (en
Inventor
真範 小助川
Original Assignee
東芝テック株式会社
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Priority to JP2032597 priority Critical
Priority to JP9-20325 priority
Application filed by 東芝テック株式会社 filed Critical 東芝テック株式会社
Priority to JP10845697A priority patent/JP3519240B2/en
Publication of JPH10275064A publication Critical patent/JPH10275064A/en
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Publication of JP3519240B2 publication Critical patent/JP3519240B2/en
Anticipated expiration legal-status Critical
Expired - Fee Related legal-status Critical Current

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Description

Detailed Description of the Invention

[0001]

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention is applied to, for example, a controller unit such as a laser beam printer or an inkjet printer and a print server device, and is suitable for print control in a client / server environment symbolized by the Internet / Intranet. Equipment and
The present invention relates to a computer-readable storage medium.

[0002]

2. Description of the Related Art In recent years, the importance of network computing represented by the Internet and Intranet has increased. That is, the value of sharing information on an organizational unit, corporate unit, or social unit is recognized, and the information is stored on the server computer and can be accessed and browsed from the client computer. The body of the email is stored in the server computer, and the procedure for opening the email can be accessed and browsed in the same manner as the shared information.

On the other hand, the control method of the printing apparatus is such that, for example, a computer must edit the print data and transmit the print data to the printing apparatus. Therefore, even if the information to be printed is stored in the server computer, the client computer obtains the information from the server computer, and after the user browses the information and activates the print operation,
In the client computer, a printer type-dependent program called a printer driver converts the information into print information described in a page description language interpretable by the printing apparatus, transmits the print information to the printing apparatus, and performs print control. The apparatus needs to perform a series of processing procedures of receiving the print information, interpreting the print information, converting the print information into print data printable by the printing apparatus, and performing printing. For this reason,
It takes a lot of time to print a document, and it is necessary to prepare a printer driver for each printer to be used.

For example, in the conventional printing process, as shown in FIG. 39, when the user wants to print the linked information from the displayed information, first, an instruction to obtain the linked information file (P1) is issued. The client computer performs the process (P2) of acquiring the information file F from the server computer, and the acquired information is displayed (P3). Next, the user performs a printing operation to activate the printing operation (P4).

The client computer which has started the printing process first converts the information file F into a format that can be interpreted by the operating system (OS) running on the client computer by application software (P5) and outputs it to the OS. The OS activates the printer driver (P6), and the printer driver converts the OS format information file F into PDL format data (P7).
), And sends it to the print control device (P8). The print control device converts the PDL format information file F into print data (P9) and prints it with the printing device (P10).

As shown in FIG. 40, the user first inputs the address (URL: Uniform Resource Locator) of the desired information file into the client computer when browsing the information file (P11). This allows
The client computer sends an information request to the server computer (P12), acquires the information file F from the server computer, and displays it (P13). The user browses the displayed information file F (P14),
When printing is desired, a printing operation is performed to activate the printing operation (P15).

The client that started the printing process is shown in FIG.
As in the case of 9, the application software first converts the information file F into a format that can be interpreted by the operating system (OS) running on the client computer (P16), and outputs the converted file to the OS. The printer driver is started (P17), and the printer driver PDLs the information file F in OS format.
The data is converted into (Page Description Language) format data (P18) and transmitted to the print control device (P19). The print control device converts the PDL format information file F into print data (P20) and prints it with the printing device (P21).

Further, as disclosed in Japanese Unexamined Patent Publication No. 8-156342, header information is transmitted to a printing apparatus separately from print data, and the printing apparatus manages print data based on the header information and selects a job. However, there is also one that allows a host computer to select a job.

On the other hand, there is a server computer technology called Proxy. Proxy is a software technology that relays various communication protocols at the application layer.
Functions such as improved security, reduced traffic, and character code conversion are implemented. This is described, for example, in "Detailed Functions of Multipurpose Proxy Server DeleGate" in the September 1995 issue of Interface Magazine.

When image data is included in the document transmitted from the server computer to the client computer, 75 DPI (for the purpose of reducing the data transmission amount and speeding up the display processing time and considering the display resolution). DotPer Inch) some images are used. With this resolution, there is no problem when viewed through a display, but there is a problem when this image is printed by a printing device. That is, the printing apparatus has poor gradation but has a resolution capability of 300 DPI to several thousand DPI, and the image quality when printing a document of about 75 DPI is not satisfactory.

[0011]

In the conventional print control system, the user specifies the information in the information file of the server computer on the client computer to acquire the information, and transmits the acquired information to the print control apparatus. A series of processes up to printing by the printing device is troublesome and time-consuming, and it has not been possible to realize high-speed printing. In particular, if the document contains image data, and if you try to print this image data with an image quality that effectively utilizes the resolution capability of the printing device, the series of processes will take more time,
It was more difficult to increase the printing speed.

There is also a problem that the user operation is troublesome and the print processing load on the client computer is heavy. Furthermore, there is a problem in that a printer driver that operates on a computer must be prepared for each printing apparatus, and the printer driver maintenance burden on the user increases.

Therefore, the present invention provides a print control device capable of realizing high speed printing. The present invention also provides a computer-readable storage medium that can realize high-speed printing.

Further, the present invention provides a print control apparatus which is easy to operate by a user, can significantly reduce the print processing load on the client computer, and can reduce the printer driver maintenance load on the user. Further, the present invention provides a computer-readable storage medium that is easy to operate by the user, can significantly reduce the print processing load on the client computer, and can reduce the printer driver maintenance load on the user.

Further, the present invention provides a print control apparatus which is excellent in usability, since it is not necessary to prepare a printer-specific program such as a printer driver in the client computer in advance.

Further, the present invention further provides a print control apparatus capable of coping with high-quality image printing and improving print quality.

Further, according to the present invention, when the information file has moving image data, the moving image can be printed by using an appropriate still image, the loss of moving image information can be prevented, and the information expressing power by printing can be improved. A print control device is provided.

Further, according to the present invention, it is not necessary to prepare a printer-specific program such as a printer driver in the client computer in advance, and a computer-readable print control system which is easy to use can be constructed.
To provide a Do storage medium.

The present invention further provides a computer-readable storage medium capable of constructing a print control system capable of coping with high-quality image printing and improving print quality.

Further, according to the present invention, when moving image data is contained in the information file, the moving image can be printed using an appropriate still image, loss of moving image information can be prevented, and information expressive power by printing can be improved. child can build a printing control system
Provided is a computer-readable storage medium.

[0021]

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is a server computer and information file having a data file to communicate the client computer and its respectively viewing the display, the print control device that controls the printing apparatus, Service
Information file to obtain the information file from the server computer
File acquisition means and this information file acquisition means
Sent information file to the client computer,
Displayed on the display of the client computer
Mark with another information file linked from the information file
Address of information file to be printed, paper size, number of copies, etc.
Remote control communication means for receiving input event
Based on the input event received by this remote control communication means.
A job ticket generator that generates a job ticket based on
And the job ticket using the information file acquisition means.
Whether the information file indicated by the address is the server computer
And print data based on the job ticket
Then, the printing control apparatus includes an autonomous printing unit that prints .

[0022]

[0023]

[0024]

[0025]

[0026]

[0027]

The present invention communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and controls a computer for controlling a printing device, and an information file acquiring means for acquiring the information file from the server computer. , The information file address and the paper size and the number of copies to be transmitted to the client computer by transmitting the information file acquired by this information file acquisition means to another information file linked from the information file displayed on the display of the client computer Etc. using the information file acquisition means, the remote operation communication means for receiving the input event in which the information etc. is input, the job ticket generation means for generating the job ticket based on the input event received by the remote operation communication means, and the information file acquisition means. It creates print data based on the job ticket to obtain information file indicated by the address of the ticket from the server computer, in recording a computer-readable storage medium a program for functioning as an autonomous printing means for printing.

[0029]

[0030]

[0031]

[0032]

[0033]

[0034]

[0035]

[0036]

[0037]

[0038]

[0039]

[0040]

[0041]

[0042]

[0043]

[0044]

[0045]

[0046]

[0047]

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION Embodiments of the present invention will be described below with reference to the drawings. (First embodiment)

FIG. 1 is a functional block diagram showing the basic configuration of the print control device of the print control system.
It comprises a server computer 1 provided with an information file, a client computer 2 for browsing the information file on a display, and a print controller 3 for communicating with each of the computers 1 and 2.

The print control device 3 receives a job ticket which is received from the client computer 2 and which is composed of the address of the information file on the server computer 1 and the print parameters such as the paper size and the number of copies. A ticket receiving unit 4, an information file acquiring unit 5 for acquiring an information file to be printed from the server computer 1 based on the address of the information file designated by the job ticket, and a printing device described later prints from the job ticket and the information file. An autonomous printing unit 7 that performs rasterization processing to generate print data having a possible bitmap configuration and outputs the generated print data to the printing apparatus interface (I / F) 6 is provided, and thus the printing processing is autonomously performed. Realized a print control system To have.

Further, the print control device 3 has a job ticket generating function. That is, a remote operation communication means 8 for transmitting an information file to the client computer 2 and receiving a keyboard input from the client computer 2, and an address, paper size, and number of copies of an information file to be printed using the remote operation communication means 8. Job ticket generating means 9 for generating and storing a job ticket composed of requirements such as the above in a memory, thereby providing the client computer 2 with a function of generating a job ticket, and performing print processing autonomously. It realizes a print control system that can

The print control device 3 also has an information file cache function. That is, the information file cache means 10 for temporarily storing the information file acquired by the information file acquisition means 5, and the information file cache search means 1 for searching the information file cache memory for the information file indicated by the job ticket address.
1, thereby realizing a print control system capable of performing high-speed print processing of the information file viewed by the user on the display of the client computer 2.

The print control device 3 also creates print data in advance from the information file cached in the information file cache memory and caches it in the print data cache memory using the print data cache means 12. The rasterizing means 13 and the autonomous printing means 7 are provided with the print data cache searching means 14 that searches the print data cache memory at the time of printing, whereby the information file viewed by the user can be printed at high speed. A print control system is realized.

The print control device 3 recognizes the type of the component and judges whether it is defined or not, and the component program acquisition means for acquiring the component program of the undefined component from the server computer 1. 1
6 and the component execution means 17 for calling and executing the component program, thereby realizing the print control system capable of performing the print processing of the information file including the data dependent on the component program.

Further, the print control device 3 defines a bookmark storage means 18 for registering and storing the address of the server computer 1, an information file name, etc. in a main memory, a non-volatile memory or an external storage device and a user. The user definition file storage means 19 and the user identification means 20 for prompting a user input at the start of the remote control communication means 8 are provided.

By configuring the print control device 3 as described above, the server computer 1 having the function of executing printing autonomously and possessing the information file to be printed is provided.
It is possible to autonomously acquire an information file from the client, convert it into printable print data, and perform printing, thereby eliminating the print processing in the client computer 2 used by the user, and from the information file to the client OS. Format, the format of the client OS is converted to PDL, and the useless conversion process of converting the PDL into print data is eliminated, and the data communication amount related to printing on the network is reduced.

That is, when the user of the client computer 2 viewing the information file having the hypertext structure of the server computer 1 desires to print another information file linked from the displayed information file, the client The computer 2 prepares a job ticket, extracts the address of the information file desired to be printed from the displayed information file, and sets it in the job ticket. At the same time, print parameters such as the desired paper size and the number of copies are also set in the job ticket. And sends only this job ticket to the print control device 3.

The print control device 3 receives the job ticket from the client computer 2 by the job ticket receiving means 4 and activates the autonomous printing means 7. The autonomous printing means 6 uses the information file acquisition means 5 to acquire the information file based on the address part of the job ticket,
The acquired information file is rasterized by referring to the page variable of the job ticket, print data in the bitmap format is created, and the created print data is transmitted to the printing device described later via the printing device interface 6. . As a result, the printing device prints.

The user of the client computer 2 accesses the print control device 3 from the remote control communication means 8, and the print control device 3 acquires the information file based on the address of the server computer 1 input from the keyboard of the client computer 2. The means 5 acquires an information file and transmits the acquired information file to the client computer 2. As a result, the user of the client computer 2 can view the information file forming the hypertext structure of the server computer 1 on the display via the print control device 3. Therefore, when the user desires to print another linked information file from the displayed information file, the print control device 3 generates a job ticket in which many information files are registered in the memory. A large number of information files can be autonomously printed without preparing a special program in the client computer 2. At the same time, when the user wants to print the information file being displayed, this information file already exists on the print control device 3, so when the user wants to print, the information file must be acquired from the server computer 1. It is possible to perform printing processing at high speed without any problem.

The user who is viewing the information file forming the hypertext structure of the server computer 1 on the display of the client computer 2 via the print control device 3 displays the information file being displayed or the information file previously displayed. When printing is desired, most of the information files are already stored in the memory of the print control device 3, and when the user wants to print, there is no need to acquire the information file from the server computer 1, and high-speed printing processing is possible. It will be possible to do.

Further, by utilizing the idle time of the CPU of the print control device 3, print data is created from the information file cached in the information file cache memory and cached in the print data cache memory. be able to. Therefore, when the user desires to print the information file stored in the print data cache memory, it is not necessary to generate print data, and high-speed print processing can be performed.

Further, when the format of the information file is a format in which components are integrated, a component program is required to process the data of the component part. At this time, the component identification means 15
It is possible to determine whether the required component is defined and available in step S1, and the undefined component program can be acquired by the component program acquisition unit 16, and the component execution unit 17 can call and execute the component program. As a result, an information file including various components can be processed.

Further, by reusing the address of the information file stored in the bookmark storing means 18, the user's keyboard input operation can be reduced. Also,
By defining the user who uses the print control device 3 in the user definition file storage means 19 in advance, the user identified by the user identification means 20 can use the unique bookmark storage means 18, and the user can use the bookmark storage means 18. Individual environment can be realized.

Next, this embodiment will be described in more detail.
FIG. 2 shows the configuration of the entire print control system connected by a network, in which a server computer 101, client computers 201, 202,
203, the print control device 3 for controlling the drive of the printing device 21 is connected. Further, the server computer 102 is connected to another LAN 212, and another LAN 213 is connected.
The server computer 103 is connected to. The LANs 211, 212, 213 are connected to the Internet network via routers 221, 222, 223, respectively.

FIG. 3 is a block diagram showing a hardware configuration of the print control device 3, which is a CPU (central processing unit) 3
1, ROM (Read Only Memory) 32, RAM
A (random access memory) 33, a communication interface (I / F) 34, an external storage unit 35, a storage medium reading device 36, and a printing device interface (I / F) 37 that constitutes the printing device I / F 6 are provided. There is.

The CPU 31 receives data such as a job ticket and an information file from the communication interface 34, generates print data in the RAM 33, and transmits the print data to the printing device 21 via the printing device interface 37. ing. The printing device 21
Print data is received from the print control device 3 and printed.

The print control device 3 uses the RAM 33 and the external storage device 35 as a cache memory for information files and print data. The ROM 32 is
The CPU 31 stores a control program for interpreting and executing the above-mentioned processing. In addition, the print control device 3
Stores the component program received by the communication interface 34 from the server computers 201 to 203 in the RAM 33, and the CPU 31 executes the component program. In addition,
The control program stored in the ROM 32 is stored in the storage medium 38 in advance, and the storage medium reading device 36 reads the control program from the storage medium 38 and stores it in the RAM.
It is also possible to execute the processing by reading the control program stored in the RAM 33 and stored in the RAM 33 by the CPU 31. The print control device 3 includes LANs 211 and 21.
Client computer 20 using 2, 213 as a medium
1, 202, 203 and the server computer 101,
Data communication is performed with 102 and 103.

FIG. 4 is a diagram showing the structure of the hypertext to be printed by the print control device 3, in which the hypertext has information that it possesses and sends, and the words, collocations, clauses or sentences in this information. Is set as one unit, and the address of the information file linked to this one unit is held. As shown in the figure, the text 231, the text 232, the text 233, and the text 234 form hypertext. Specifically, the compound 241 of the text 231 is accompanied by information linking to the text 232, the compound 242 is accompanied by information linking to the text 233, and the compound 243 of the text 232 is associated with information linking to the text 234. It is attached.

For example, when detailed information regarding the complex word 241 of the text 231 is desired, the text 232 can be easily called only by designating the complex word 241. A description grammar example 251 is shown as an example in which the text 231 is specifically described. A tag is defined to attach link information to the compound word 241, and a tag 252 and a tag 253 are defined.
This is a rule for modifying the multiple word 254 by enclosing the multiple word 254 with, and it is possible to attach the link information to the text by this rule. HTML for tag format
(Hyper Text Markup Language) is widely used.

FIG. 5 shows a printing process, and FIG. 6 shows another example of the printing process, which will be described with reference to the functional block diagram of FIG. In the printing process of FIG. 5, the user first creates a job ticket based on the link information of the displayed information file (P31), and the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203) prints the created job ticket. It is transmitted to the control device 3 (P32).

When the print control device 3 receives the job ticket, it refers to the address part of the job ticket to acquire the information file F from the server computer 1 (101, 102, 103) (P33), and the information file F
Is converted into print data (P34), and the printing device 21
Print with (P35).

Therefore, in comparison with the conventional printing process shown in FIG. 39, the user's operation in the conventional method is twice, whereas in this embodiment, the user's operation is once, and the operation is performed once. Can be simplified to improve operability. Also,
The transmission of the information file F on the network is twice in the conventional method, but is once in this embodiment, and the network traffic can be reduced. Also,
In this embodiment, the acquisition / display processing and format conversion processing of the information file by the client computer are completely unnecessary, and it is possible to significantly shorten the time until the printed matter is created and to realize high speed processing.

In the printing process of FIG. 6, first, the user accesses the print control device 3 to activate the remote control communication means 8 (P41), and inputs the address of the desired information file F (P42). The print control device 3 transfers the designated information file F to the server computer 1 (101, 102, 1).
(P43), and the acquired information file F is cached (P44) and transmitted to the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203) (P43).
45).

The user also performs a remote operation (P4
6) As a result, the print control device 3 creates a job ticket based on the cached link information of the information file F (P47), interprets the information file F according to the print instruction from the user (P48), and prints the print data. (P49), and print with the printing device (P50).

Therefore, compared with the conventional printing process shown in FIG. 39, in response to the user's operation in the conventional method, in this method, the remote operation is activated (P41) and the cache processing in the print control device 3 (P44). However, the acquisition / display processing and format conversion processing of the information file by the client computer are not required at all, and the time until the printed matter is made can be greatly shortened and the speedup can be realized.

FIG. 7 shows a structure and an example of creating a job ticket. The job ticket 261 shown in (a) is composed of the number of print jobs, an address part, page variables, and print variables. The number of print jobs indicates how many print jobs are defined in the job ticket. The address part is a protocol used for communication with the server computer, an address of the server computer on the network, a directory of information files on the server /
It consists of a file name, etc. The page variable is a variable that is referred to when print data is created and includes paper size, enlargement / reduction ratio, cover page presence / absence, portrait / landscape selection, and the like. The print variable is a variable that is referred to when printing is performed, and includes the number of print copies and page ascending / descending order selection. (b) shows a creation example, and this creation example illustrates a job ticket in which two print jobs are defined.

FIG. 8 shows the structure of the component 262 included in the information file.
Consists of an identifier and data that identifies the component program that processes the component.

FIG. 9 shows the structure of the component program management table 263 for managing the component programs for processing the components stored in the RAM 33. The component program management table 26 is shown in FIG.
3 is an identifier that defines the component program and R
It is composed of a component program start address required to activate the component program stored in the AM 33.

FIG. 10 shows the structure of the print data cache management table 264 for managing the cache of the print data stored in the RAM 33. The print data cache management table 264 is a time stamp for storing the time when the print data is cached. The job ticket is referred to when the print data is created and the file pointer of the print data stored in the RAM 33 or the external storage device 35.

FIG. 11 shows the structure of the information file cache management table 265 stored in the RAM 33. The information file cache management table 265 stores a time stamp for storing the time when the information file was created.
It is composed of the address of this information file and the file pointer of the information file stored in the RAM 33 or the external storage device 35.

FIG. 12 shows the RAM 33 or the external storage device 3.
5 shows the structure of the user definition file 266 stored in the user definition file 266. The user definition file 266 is a user name for identifying the user who accesses from the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203) and the external storage device 3.
It is composed of the bookmark file name stored in 5.
FIG. 13 shows the structure of the bookmark file 267 stored in the external storage device 35. The bookmark file 267 is composed of the addresses of information files.

FIG. 14 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program for realizing the job ticket receiving means 4.
First, in step S1, the client computer 2
Data is received, it is determined in step S2 whether the received data is a job ticket, and if it is not a job ticket, other processing is performed in step S3. Also,
If it is a job ticket, then in step S4,
It is checked whether the data is set correctly, and if there is an invalid entry, an error is notified to the client computer 2 in step S5. An invalid entry is, for example, that the protocol of the address part of the job ticket 301 is undefined, the paper size of the page variable is undefined, or the enlargement / reduction ratio exceeds the allowable range. is there. If the contents of the job ticket are correct, a memory is secured in step S6, the contents of the job ticket are stored in this memory, and the autonomous printing means 7 is activated in step S7 to save the job ticket on the memory. Pass and end the series of processing.

FIG. 15 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program that realizes the autonomous printing means 7. First, in step S11, a job ticket is received from the job ticket receiving unit 4 or the job ticket generating unit 9 or the autonomous pre-rasterizing unit 13, which is the calling source.

Next, in step S12, a counter CT is secured as a variable area on the memory and 1 is set as an initial value. Then, in step S13, the print data cache management table 26 using the address part and page variable of the CTth job in the job ticket as search keys.
Whether or not there is print data matching 4 is searched, and it is determined in step S14 whether or not the print data exists. If print data exists, the process proceeds to step S15, and if not, the process proceeds to step S16. Incidentally, the above steps S13, S14
Implements the print data cache search means 14.

If it is determined in step S14 that the print data does not exist, that is, the print data is not cached, the page memory for generating the print data is secured in step S16, and the process proceeds to step S17. Then, the information file acquisition means 5 transfers the information file indicated by the address part of the job ticket to the server computer 1 (10
1, 102, 103), and in step S18,
Interpret the acquired information file and call the process for each object. Then, for character data, step S
In step S20, the character processing is performed and characters are drawn in the page memory. Further, the graphic data is subjected to graphic processing in step S21, and the graphic is drawn in the page memory in step S22. Further, the bitmap data is subjected to the bitmap processing in step S23, and the bitmap is drawn in the page memory in step S24. For component data, the process proceeds to step S25 to temporarily store the component data in the RAM 253, and in step S26, the component program management table 263 is searched using the component data identifier as a search key, and in step S27. , Determine the presence or absence. If the identifier exists, the process proceeds to step S28, and if the identifier does not exist, the process proceeds to step S29. The steps S26 and S27 implement the component identifying means 15.

If the component program does not exist in the component program management table 263, the component program of the identifier is set in the server computer 1 (101, 102, 10) in step S29.
3), the component program is received from the server computer in step S30, and step S30 is executed.
At 31, the received component program is RAM3
3, the program start address and the identifier determined by the setting are registered in the component program management table 263, and the process proceeds to step S28. The steps S29, S30, and S31 implement the component program acquisition means 16.

When the component program exists in the component program management table 263, or when the registration in step S31 is completed, R is read in step S28.
The memory address of the component data temporarily stored in the AM 33 is pushed onto the stack, and the program of the start address of the component program management table 263 is called in step S32. The above steps S28 and S32 implement the component execution means 17.

After performing the processing for each object, it is determined in step S33 whether all the data in the information file has been interpreted, and if data still exists, the process returns to step S18. When all the data in the information file has been interpreted, the created print data is stored in a memory such as an external storage device in step S34, and the current time and the job ticket and print data file received from the calling source are stored. The pointer is registered in the print data cache management table 264. Note that step S34 realizes the print data cache unit 12.

If print data exists in step S14, or if the process of step S34 ends, it is determined in step S15 whether the number of print copies in the print variable of the job ticket is 0, and a value other than 0 is set. Sometimes, in step S35, the designated number of copies is printed. When it is 0, printing is not performed. Then, in step S36, the counter CT is incremented by 1.
It is incremented, and it is determined in step S37 whether all the jobs of the job ticket have been processed. If there are still jobs, the process returns to step S13 to repeat the same processing, and if there are no jobs, the series of processing ends. .

FIG. 16 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program realizing the information file acquisition means 5. First, in step S41, a memory area for storing the address AD of the specified information file is secured and set, and in step S42, the information file cache management table 2
The address AD set from 65 is used as a search key to search for the existence of the same information file, and it is determined in step S43 whether or not the same information file exists. If the same information file exists, the process proceeds to step S44, and if the same information file does not exist, the process proceeds to step S45. The steps S42 and S43 implement the information file cache search means 11.

If the same information file does not exist,
In step S45, an information file is requested to the server computer 1 (101, 102, 103) based on the set address AD, and subsequently, in step S46, the information file is received from the server computer, and in step S46
At 47, the received information file is stored in an external storage device or the like. Then, in step S48, the information file creation time and the address AD acquired from the server computer 1 (101, 102, 103) and the file pointer of the stored information file are registered in the information file cache management table 265. Incidentally, the above steps S47, S48
Realizes the information file cache means 10.

Finally, in step S44, the information file is passed to the calling source and the series of processes is completed. If it is determined in step S43 that the same information file exists, the process immediately proceeds to step S44, the information file is passed to the calling source, and the series of processes is ended.

FIG. 17 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program realizing the remote control communication means 8. First,
When an access request is received from the client computer 2 in S51, the user is prompted to enter a user name in step S52, and the process waits until the user name is entered. Then, when the user name is input, the input user name is searched from the user definition file 306 in step S53, and it is determined whether or not the user name exists in step S54. If the user name exists, the process proceeds to step S55, and if the user name does not exist, the process proceeds to step S56. In step S55, the bookmark file name is acquired from the user definition file 306 and set in the environment variable FILE. In step S56, the shared bookmark file name is set in the environment variable FILE.

Succeedingly, in a step S57, the job ticket generating means 9 is activated, and in a step S58, an event input is awaited. Then, the client computer 2 (20
1, 202, 203), the keyboard input data is received in step S59, the received data is passed to the job ticket generating means 9 in step S60, and the event in step S58 is received. Return to waiting for input. If the display request is from the job ticket generating means 9, the display request is received in step S61, the display data is transmitted to the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203) in step S62, and the step is executed. Return to wait for event input in S58. When the access from the user is completed, the access end process is performed in step S63, the job ticket generating means 9 is notified of the end in step S64, and the series of processes is terminated.

FIG. 18 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program that realizes the job ticket generating means 9.
First, in step S71, a memory area JC for storing a job ticket is secured, and then in step S72,
The bookmark information is read from the file with the bookmark file name set in the environment variable FILE, then, in step S73, the basic display screen illustrated in FIG. 19 is created, and then in step S74, the basic display screen is displayed. Is sent to the remote control communication means 8, and step S
At 75, an event input is awaited from the remote control communication means 8.

When any event occurs,
In step S76, it is determined whether or not the content of the input event is an end notification, and when the end notification is given, a series of processes is ended. When the content of the input event is other than the end notification, the input event is processed.

That is, when the event input is the print start instruction (step S77), the job ticket JC is passed to the autonomous printing means 7 in step S78, and the job ticket JC is cleared in step S79. When the event input is the address input of the information file (step S80), the information file acquisition means 5 acquires the information file for the input address in step S81, and the information acquired in step S82. Update the display screen with the contents of the file. If the event input is an address set (step S83), the address specified by the link information in the bookmark or the information file being displayed is set in the address part of the job ticket JC in step S84, and then in step S85. Then, the number of print jobs of the job ticket JC is incremented by one.

Further, when the event input is the print parameter input (step S86), the print parameter is set in the page variable and print variable area of the job ticket JC in step S87. After these event input processes are individually finished, the display screen is updated and passed to the remote control communication means 8 in step S88, and the process waits for event input in step S75 again.

FIG. 19 shows the client computer 2 (201, 202, 2) when the job ticket generating means 9 uses the remote control communication means 8 to generate a job ticket.
It is an example of a display screen displayed by the display of 03). This display screen includes a bookmark display area D1, an information file browsing area D2, an information file address input D3, a job ticket creation area D4, a print start button D5, and an end button D6.

When an address is entered in the information file address input D3, the information file is displayed in the information file browsing area D2. Also, the bookmark display area D1
Address and information file viewing area D displayed in
By moving the cursor to the character part that has the link information displayed in 2 and specifying the address by means of operating a specific key or clicking with the mouse, you can set the address set in the job ticket creation area D4. The operation can be performed. When the print start button D5 is operated, the printing device 21 starts printing based on the instruction created in the job ticket creation area D4.

FIG. 20 shows the autonomous pre-rasterizing means 13
6 is a flowchart showing the operation of a program that realizes In this processing flow, the CPU 31 of the print control device 3 is always activated during an idle time period when no print processing is being performed. First, a standard page variable is created in step S91, 1 is set as an initial value in the counter variable CT in step S92, and the CT of the information file cache management table 265 is set in step S93.
The presence of the th information file address is searched, and it is determined in step S95 whether it exists. If the information file address does not exist, a job ticket is created with the variable AD, the standard page variable, and the number of copies to be printed in step S96, and the autonomous printing means 7 is activated to create print data in step S97. Cache, step S
Continue to 98.

If the information file address exists and the print data exists in the cache, step S99.
The time stamp of the information file cache management table 265 is the print data cache management table 26.
It is compared whether it is newer than the time stamp of 4, and step S10
If it is judged as new at 0, it is judged that the version of the information file of the server computer 1 (101, 102, 103) has been updated, and step S101
In step S96, the corresponding print data is deleted from the print data cache, and in step S96, a job ticket is created with the variable AD, the standard page variable, and the number of copies to be printed.
Then, the autonomous printing means 7 is activated to create and cache print data, and the process proceeds to step S98. Also, step S10
If it is determined at 0 that it is not new, the process proceeds to step S98.

In step S98, it is determined whether or not the variable CT is equal to the number of information file caches. If they are equal, the process returns to step S92 to set the counter CT to 1, and if they are not equal, the variable CT is set to 1 in step S102. Is incremented by one and the process returns to step S93.

By performing such processing by each means of the print control device 3, an autonomous and intelligent print control system is realized, whereby the client computer 2 (20).
1,202,203), the print processing load is greatly reduced, the data communication traffic related to printing on the network is reduced, the user's print operation is simplified, and the data format conversion process is significantly reduced. To do. Therefore, the printing speed can be increased. In addition, it is not necessary to prepare a printer driver that operates on a computer, which has conventionally been prepared for each printing apparatus, and the printer driver maintenance burden on the user can be reduced.

(Second Embodiment) FIG. 21 is a functional block diagram showing a basic configuration of a print control device of a print control system. This system is provided with an information file as in the first embodiment. Server computer 1, a client computer 2 for browsing the information file on the display, and each computer 1,
The print control device 30 communicates with each of the two.

The print control device 30 is provided with a communication I / F (interface) 301 for communicating with the server computer 1 and a communication I / F (interface) 302 for communicating with the client computer 2. Further, the print control apparatus 30 receives an information request from the client computer 2 via the communication I / F 302 and the request reception processing means 312 by an information request reception processing function 303a, and sends this information request to the communication I / F 301. Information request transmission processing function 3 for transmitting to the server computer 1 via the
03b, the communication I / from the server computer 1
Information file receiving processing function 303c for receiving an information file via F301, information file storing processing function 303d for storing this information file, and information file for transmitting this information file to the client computer 2 via the communication I / F 302 Transmission processing function 30
The proxy acquisition means 303 provided with 3e is provided.

Further, the print control device 30 manages the rasterizing means 304 for converting the information file into bitmap data which can be printed by the printing device described later, the stored information file and the bitmap data generated from this information file. A print data management unit 305 is provided, and a print unit 307 that receives a print request from the client computer 2 and prints the bitmap data on a printing apparatus described later via a printing apparatus I / F (interface) 306 is provided. The rasterizing unit 304 is a bitmap that allows the printing apparatus to print the information file stored in the print data managing unit 305 before the print request is received using the idle time zone of the CPU of the print control apparatus 30. It is designed to be converted to data in advance.

The print control device 30 further includes a print request transmission program code for transmitting a print request to the information file, a code addition processing function 308a for adding a print operation program code for activating this program code, and a client computer. 2 to the communication I / F 302 and request reception processing means 312
A print activation unit 308 having a print request reception processing function 308b for receiving a print request via the printer is provided.

When the rasterizing means 304 detects image data as a data element in the information file, the print control device 30 refers to the high-quality image information attached to the image data and prints it on the server computer 1. A high-quality image acquisition unit 309 for requesting image data having a resolution and gradation number suitable for the apparatus and receiving a high-quality image,
When the rasterizing means 304 detects moving image data in which characters, images, graphics, etc. change as a data element in the information file with respect to the time axis, a moving image for converting one scene at an arbitrary time in the moving image data into a still image. When the image converting means 310 and the rasterizing means 304 detect moving image data in which characters, images, graphics, etc. change as a data element in the information file with respect to the time axis, refer to still image information accompanying this moving image data. Further, a still image acquisition unit 311 for requesting and receiving a still image from the server computer 1 is provided.

The print control device 30 is provided with the proxy acquisition means 303, the rasterization means 304, the print data management means 305, and the printing means 307 to realize a printing system capable of high-speed printing.
By providing the print starting unit 308 provided with the code addition processing function 308a and the print request reception processing function 308b, it is possible to print at high speed without preparing a special program such as a printer driver in the client computer 2. Has been realized.

In the print control device 30, the print data managing means 3 is provided before the rasterizing means 304 receives a print request using the idle time zone of the CPU.
By converting the information file stored in 05 into bitmap data, it is possible to realize a printing system capable of printing at higher speed, and by providing the high-quality image acquisition unit 309, high-speed printing can be performed for image data. In addition, we have realized a printing system that enables high-quality printing.
By including the moving image conversion unit 310 and by including the still image acquisition unit 311, it is possible to realize a printing system capable of improving the loss of information of moving image data and performing printing.

A process in which the print control device 30 acts on behalf of the user to obtain information from the server computer 1 through communication between the server computer 1 holding the information file and the client computer 2 browsing the information file. By holding the information file obtained in step 1 in advance inside and preparing for printing, it is possible to speed up the printing process. Further, high-quality image data is acquired from the server computer 1 without increasing the load on the client computer 2, and the print quality of the image data is improved. If still image data corresponding to the moving image data is prepared in advance in the server computer 1, the still image data is acquired from the server computer 1, and if the server computer 1 does not prepare the still image data, the moving image is obtained. By converting the data to still image data and printing the document, the improvement of the information expression ability is realized.

In this print control system, the user who browses the information file is the client computer 2
From the client computer 2 to the print control device 30, and when the print control device 30 receives the information request from the client computer 2, the print control device 30 transmits the information request to the server computer 1. Then, the print control device 30
When the information file is received from the server computer 1, the information file is temporarily stored in the memory, and a print request transmission program code for transmitting a print request to the information file and a print operation program code for activating the program code. Is added and transmitted to the client computer 2. When the client computer 2 receives the information file, it displays it.

When the user desires to print the display information, the user operates the print operation program code to activate the print request transmission program code, and the print request transmission program prints only the print request from the client computer 2. It is transmitted to the control device 30. Upon receiving the print request, the print control device 30 converts the information file temporarily stored in the memory into bitmap data that can be printed by the printing device, and causes the printing device to print the bitmap data.
Generation of print data in the client computer 2 and printing control device 3 from the client computer 2
0 does not need to transmit print data, and the client computer 2 does not have a special means for notifying the print control device 30 of the start of printing. It can print at high speed.

Also, by using the idle time zone of the CPU of the print control device 30, before the print control device 30 receives the print request, the information file temporarily stored in the memory can be printed as bitmap data in the print device. Since it has been converted in advance, it is ready for printing in advance, so that the information file can be printed at high speed.

When the image data is detected as a data element in the information file, the print control device 30 refers to the high quality image information attached to the image data by the high quality image acquisition means 309 and instructs the server computer 1 to do so. Image data having a resolution and gradation number suitable for the capability of the printing apparatus is requested. The server computer 1 transmits the requested high quality image to the print control device 30. The print control device 30 receives the high-quality image by the high-quality image acquisition unit 309 and replaces it with the original image data, so that the image data can be printed at high speed and with high quality.

When dynamic data in which characters, images, graphics, etc. change with respect to the time axis is detected as a data element in the information file, the print control device 30 causes the moving image converting means 310 to select any moving image data. By converting one scene of time into a still image, loss of moving image information can be prevented. When the moving image data in which characters, images, graphics, etc. change with respect to the time axis is detected as a data element in the information file, the print control device 30 causes the still image acquisition unit 311 to add still image information accompanying the moving image data. To request a still image from the server computer 1. The server computer 1 transmits the requested still image to the print control device 30, and the print control device 30 receives the still image by the still image acquisition means 311 and arranges it in the drawing area of the original moving image data. It is possible to prevent loss of moving image information.

Next, this embodiment will be described in more detail.
FIG. 22 shows the configuration of the entire print control system connected by a network. The LAN 211 has a server computer 101 and client computers 201, 20.
2, 203, and the print control device 30 that drives and controls the print device 21 is connected. Also, connect the server computer 102 to another LAN 212, and
The server computer 103 is connected to 213.
The LANs 211, 212, 213 are connected to the Internet network via routers 221, 222, 223, respectively.

FIG. 23 is a block diagram showing the hardware configuration of the print control device 30. The CPU (central processing unit) 321 and the ROM (read only memory) 32 are shown in FIG.
2, a RAM (random access memory) 323, a communication interface (I / F) 324 that configures the communication I / Fs 301 and 302, an external storage unit 325, a storage medium reading device 326, and the printing device I / F 306. A printing device interface (I / F) 327 is provided.

The CPU 321 receives data such as information files and information requests from the communication interface 324, generates print data in the RAM 323, and transmits the print data to the printing device 21 via the printing device interface 327. ing. The printing device 21 receives print data from the print control device 30 and prints.

The print control device 30 uses the RAM 32 as a storage area for information files and bitmap data.
3 and the external storage device 325 are used. ROM3
Reference numeral 22 stores a control program for the CPU 321 to interpret and execute the above-described processing.

The control program stored in the ROM 322 is stored in the storage medium 328, the storage medium reading device 326 reads the control program from the storage medium 328, stores the control program in the RAM 323, and the CPU 321 stores the control program. It is also possible to read the control program stored in the RAM 323 and execute the processing.

The print control device 30 includes the LAN 211,
Client computers 201, 202, 203 and server computer 10 using 212, 213 as media
Data communication is performed with 1, 102 and 103. FIG. 24 shows a printing process, which will be described with reference to the functional block diagram of FIG.

In the printing process of FIG. 24, first, the user receives the address URL (Uniform Reprint) of the desired information file.
source Locator) to client computer 2 (20
1, 202, 203) (P51), the client computer sends an information request to the print control device 30 (P52). The print control device 30 acts on behalf of the client computer and the server computer 1
An information request is transmitted to (101, 102, 103) (P53), the information file F is acquired from the server computer and stored in the external storage device 325 (P54).

Then, the print control device 30 adds a program code consisting of a print operation program for activating printing from the client computer and a print request transmission program to the information file F (P55), and the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203)
Then, the rasterizing means 304 is operated to interpret the information file F stored as a preparatory work for printing and convert it into print data (P56).

The client computer 2 (20
1, 202, 203), when receiving the information file F to which the program code is added, displays it on the display (P57). When the user browses the display of the client computer (P58) and wants to print,
To activate the printing operation, the print operation program displayed together with the information file F is operated (P59) to activate the print request transmission program.

The client computer 2 (20
1, 202, 203) operates the print request transmission program to send a print request to the print control device 30.
To (P60). Upon receiving the print request, the print control device 30 causes the printing device 21 to print as soon as the rasterizing process in P55 is completed (P61).

When the rasterizing means 304 executes the rasterizing process, when low-resolution image data or moving image data is detected in the information file F, the print controller 30 autonomously operates the server computer 1. An image suitable for the capability of the printing device 21 is requested to (101, 102, 103) (P62), a high-quality image or a still image is acquired (P63), and the corresponding part of the original information file is replaced. Then, print data is created.

Therefore, in comparison with the conventional printing process shown in FIG. 40, the conventional method requires various format conversion processes (P16, P18, P20) at the time of printing. Since it is only necessary to directly convert the print data, it is possible to significantly reduce the processing time until the printed matter is created, and it is possible to speed up the printing. Further, in the conventional method, no event that should be processed occurs in the print control device 30 until the user performs a print operation, but in this embodiment, the print control device 30 is executed before the user performs printing.
Since the information file F is obtained and the rasterizing process for creating the print data is performed, the time required for the rasterizing process can be apparently reduced to zero as compared with the related art. Further, in the conventional method, the PDL received by the print control device 30
Although the data in the (Page Description Language) format was only interpreted as it is, in the present embodiment, when the image data in the information file is detected, the image data suitable for the capability of the printing device 21 is acquired from the server computer, When moving image data is detected, the corresponding still image can be obtained from the server computer, and the ability to express printed matter can be improved.

Further, in the conventional method, a print-related program such as a printer driver has to be prepared in the client computer in advance for each printing device to be used, but in the present embodiment, such a program is attached to the information file. However, since it is supplied from the print control device 30 at any time, it is not necessary to prepare it in the client computer, and it is possible to reduce the user's trouble.

25 to 27 show a table structure for realizing the print data managing means 305, which is composed of a table A331, a table B332 and a table C333. FIG. 25 shows that in the table A331, the client computer 2 (20
1, 202, 203) and a client address storage unit 331a for storing network addresses, and an index No. for the table B332 for storing information related to the information file requested by the client computer. No. that stores It is configured with a storage unit 331b.

FIG. 27 shows a table B332 in which the index No. A storage unit 332a, an information file name storage unit 332b that stores the information file name desired by the user, a storage date and time storage unit 332c that stores the storage date and time when the corresponding information file was acquired by proxy and stored, and the corresponding information file is a print control device. A storage file name storage unit 332d that stores a storage file name when stored in an external storage device of 30 or the like;
A bitmap file name storage unit 332e that stores the bitmap file name in which the corresponding information file is converted into a bitmap and stored, and a serial number that is a unique number assigned to this record. Serial number that stores The storage unit 332f includes a reference counter 332g that stores the reference frequency of the information file of this record.

The entries stored in the table B332 can be held as long as the capacity of the storage device for storing the information file and the bitmap file allows. And
If the storage capacity limit is exceeded, the storage date is old,
Garbage collection is applied, in which the reference value of the reference counter is sequentially deleted. FIG. 26 shows Table C
333, the serial No. of the table B332. Serial No. set in the storage unit 332f. Issue serial number to issue and count. It is composed of an issuing counter 333a.

FIG. 28 shows the client computer 2.
It is a flowchart which shows operation | movement of the program which implement | achieves the request reception processing means 312 which receives and processes a request message from (201,202,203). First, in step S111, the client computer 2 (201,
(202, 203) to receive the request message from (202, 203), and when the request message is received, it is determined in step S112 whether it is an information request. If it is an information request, the information request receiving processing function of the proxy acquisition unit 303 in step S113. The received data is passed to 303a. If it is not an information request, it is determined in step S114 whether it is a print request, and if it is a print request, step S11.
At 5, the received data is passed to the print request reception processing function 308b of the print activation unit 308. If it is not a print request, an error response is sent to the client computer in step S116.

FIG. 29 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program that realizes the proxy acquisition means 303. This program is always running, and as an initial state, it waits for the reception of the information request from the client computer in step S121, and when it receives, it receives the table A3 of the print data management means 305 in step S122.
It is searched whether the network address of the client computer corresponding to 31 is entered, and if it is not entered, in step S123, the table A3 is displayed.
One record is secured in 31, the network address of the client computer is set in the client address storage unit 331a, and the process proceeds to step S125.

If it has been entered, the index No. of the table A331 is determined in step S124. Storage 3
31b index No. Is checked to see if it matches the information file name in the table B332, and if they match, the process proceeds to step S136. On the other hand, if they do not match, it is searched in step S125 for an information file matching the table B332, and if there is an entry, it is determined that the information file has already been acquired and it is determined in step S125.
At 126, the index of the corresponding record in table A331
No. The index No retrieved in step S125 is set in the storage unit 331b, and the table B33 is set in step S127.
The second reference counter 332g is incremented.

If the matching information file is not entered, the information file is acquired from the server computer and stored. That is, in step S128, an information request is transmitted to the server computer, in step S129, waiting for the reception of the information file from the server computer, and when an error occurs in step S130, it is sent to the client computer in step S131. Return an error and return to the initial state.

If the information file is received in step S129, a storage file name is generated in step S132, and the received information file is saved in the external storage device or the like with the generated file name. S133
At step S134, one record is secured in the table B332, and the information file name, storage date and time, and storage file name are set. Further, at step S134, the bitmap file name is set and the reference counter 332g is set to NULL, and then step S135. Serial No. After setting the counter value of the table C333 in the storage unit 332f,
The counter value of 333 is incremented.

Then, in step S136, a program code is added to the storage file by the code addition processing function 308a of the print starting means 308, and in step S137, the coded file is transmitted to the client computer.

FIG. 30 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program for realizing the code addition processing function 308a of the print starting means 308. First, in step S141, the template of the code to be added prepared and stored in advance is read, and in step S142, the index of the table B332 is read.
No. , Serial No. Is written in the corresponding portion of the template, and the corresponding template is inserted into the information file in step S143.

FIG. 31 is a diagram showing an example of a template of a code to be added and a procedure example of a code adding process. Figure 3
The example of the template shown in (a) of 1 shows an example of the code to be added which is prepared and stored in advance. The print request transmission program PG1 transmits a print request from the client computer 2 (201, 202, 203) to the print control device 30. The print operation program PG2 allows the user to input the paper size, the number of copies, etc., and activates the print request transmission program PG1 by the print button.

The template of FIG. 31 (a) is shown in FIG.
It is changed as shown in (b). That is, index N
o. PG3 and serial No. The corresponding value of the table B332 is set in PG4, and as shown in the additional code portion PG5 (between <br> and <br>) of the information file example after addition shown in (c) of FIG. Inserted at the beginning.

FIG. 32 shows the client computer 2.
The example of the display screen of the information file in (201, 202, 203) is shown, and the example of the display of the code part which the print control device 30 added is shown. When the user sets desired values for the paper size and the number of copies and presses the print start button, a print request is transmitted from the client computer to the print control device 30, and the print processing is performed in the print control device 30.

FIG. 33 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program that realizes the print request reception processing function 308b of the print starting means 308. First, step S151
No. received at In the variable TN, and the received serial number. Is set in the variable SN, and the index No. is set in step S152. With the value of the variable TN as the serial number in the record in the table B332. And the value of the variable SN match, and if they match, the client computer is notified in step S153 that the print request has been correctly accepted, and the printing unit 307 is notified to the index No. of the table B332 in step S154. . Notifies to start printing the information file of the variable TN and ends the process.

If they do not match in step S152, an information request is sent to the server computer in step S155 to obtain the information file from the server computer, and the information file from the server computer is sent in step S156. If an error occurs in step S157, the client computer is notified of the error in step S158, and this process ends.

When the information file is received in step S156, the storage file name is generated in step S159, and the received file is saved in the external storage device or the like with the generated file name. In step S160, one record is stored in the table B332. Secure, set the information file name, storage date and time, storage file name, and further, in step S161, set the bitmap file name and NU to the reference counter 332g.
Set the LL and then serialize in step S162.
No. After the counter value of the table C333 is set in the storage unit 332f, the counter value of the table C333 is incremented, and the index No. of the table B332 newly created in step S163. To the variable TN. Then, after passing through the above-mentioned steps S153 and S154, this processing is ended.

FIG. 34 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program realizing the printing means 307. First, in step S171, it is determined whether the bitmap file name of the table B332 indicated by the variable TN is NULL. If it is not NULL, it is determined that the printing device 21 has completed the generation of the printable bitmap file. In step S172, the bitmap file is read and the printing device I / F 306
The data is transferred to the printing device 21 via (327) and printed. If NULL, the rasterizing means 304 is instructed to generate a bitmap file in step S173, and the process waits until the bitmap file name of the table B332 indicated by the variable TN becomes non-null in step S174. If a bitmap file is generated and the bitmap file name becomes non-null, printing is performed via step S172 described above. .

FIG. 35 shows a format example of the information file F.
Here, an example of an extended format based on HTML, which is widely used, is illustrated. FIG. 35 (a) shows character data and shows a character format example. FIG. 35 (b) shows image data, showing a format example of a still image. The low-resolution image g1 is used when displaying on the display, but when a high-resolution image for printing is required, the resolution and gradation number of the printing device are specified from the high-quality image acquisition source g2 and the image with the best image quality is obtained. To get. FIG. 35 (c) shows moving image data, showing an example of the format of an image whose contents change with respect to the time axis. When the image is displayed on the display, the moving image generation program name g3 is activated to dynamically generate the image. However, when a still image for printing is required, the resolution and gradation number of the printing device are specified from the still image acquisition source g4. Obtain the image with the best image quality.

FIG. 36 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program realizing the rasterizing means 304. This program is always operating. First, in step S181, it is determined whether or not there is a print job indicated by the variable TN to be preferentially processed, which is instructed by the printing unit 307, and if there is, a step S182. At, the storage file of the variable TN is read, and the process proceeds to step S186. If there is not, it realizes that it is in the idle state, and in step S183, it stores the bitmap file name storage unit 332 from the table B332.
An entry in which e is NULL is searched for, and a non-NU is found in step S184.
Whether or not there is an LL entry is searched, and if there is no LL entry, the process returns to step S181 described above, and if there is one, step S185.
Read the storage file of the corresponding entry at.

Then, the process proceeds to step S186. This step S186 and subsequent steps is a process of interpreting the information file and creating print data. First, in step S186, a bitmap file name is generated, then in step S187 one command of the information file is analyzed, In the case of image data, the high-quality image acquisition means 309 is called in step S188, and the responded image is drawn in the drawing memory in step S189. In the case of moving image data, the moving image converting means 310 is called in step S190, and the image responded in step S191 is drawn in the drawing memory. Further, in the case of other data, other processing is performed in step S192. In other processes, character data processing, graphics data processing, drawing memory storage at page breaks, drawing memory clearing, and the like are performed.

Then, in step S193, it is determined whether or not the file has been processed to the end. If there is still data, the process is repeated from step S187. When all the data in the file have been processed, the bitmap file name is set in the bitmap file name portion of the record indicated by the variable TN in the table B332 in step S194, and the process returns to step S181.

FIG. 37 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program for realizing the high quality image acquisition means 309. First, in step S201, the data format is analyzed to determine whether the INQSRC entry, which is the high-quality image acquisition destination, is specified. If so, in step S202 the INQSRC is acquired.
To the server computer 1 (10) in step S203 by requesting an image.
1, 102, 103) and the high-quality image is received, and this processing ends. If INQSRC is not specified in the determination in step S201, the image specified by SRC is requested in step S204, a low resolution image is received from the server computer in step S205, and resolution conversion processing is performed in step S206. This process is completed.

FIG. 38 is a flow chart showing the operation of the program for realizing the moving image conversion processing, which comprises the still image acquisition means 311 and the moving image conversion means 310. First, in step S211, the data format is analyzed to determine whether an entry of INQSRC, which is a still image acquisition destination, is specified, and if specified, the still image acquisition means 311 is operated, and in step S212, the resolution for INQSRC is set. , Specify the number of gradations, request an image, and then step S21
At step 3, the still image is received from the server computer and this process ends.

If INQSRC is not specified in the determination in step S211, the moving image converting means 310 is operated, a virtual display is created in the memory in step S214, and the moving image specified by applet in step S215. Start the generation program, wait a certain time in step S216, stop the applet program started in step S217,
In step S218, the contents of the drawing memory are set as a still image, and this process ends.

As described above, in this embodiment, high-speed printing is possible, and it is not necessary to prepare a printer-specific program such as a printer driver in the client computer in advance. The high-resolution data suitable for the printing device can be processed for printing the stored data, which can improve the quality of the printed matter. Furthermore, the moving image part can be converted into an appropriate still image. By printing by printing, the information expressing ability of the printed matter can be improved.

In each of the above-mentioned embodiments, the method of connecting the print control devices 3 and 30 and the printing device 21 was not particularly referred to, but communication using a LAN as a medium as well as a conventional parallel interface such as Centronics. You may connect by a method etc.

[0156]

As described above, according to the present invention, it is possible to provide a print control device capable of realizing high-speed printing. In addition, according to the present invention, a computer- readable device capable of realizing high-speed printing is provided.
It can provide a storage medium capable Ri.

Further, according to the present invention, there is further provided a print control device which can be easily operated by the user, can significantly reduce the print processing load on the client computer, and can reduce the printer driver maintenance load on the user. it can. Further, according to the present invention, furthermore, the user operation is simple, and the print processing load on the client computer can be greatly reduced, also, the computer reads that can build a printing control system which can reduce the printer driver maintenance burden on the user A possible storage medium can be provided.

Further, according to the present invention, it is possible to provide a print control apparatus which is excellent in usability, since it is not necessary to prepare a printer-specific program such as a printer driver in the client computer in advance. Further, according to the present invention, it is possible to provide a print control apparatus capable of coping with high-quality image printing and improving print quality.

Further, according to the present invention, when there is moving image data in the information file, the moving image can be printed by using an appropriate still image, loss of moving image information can be prevented, and the information expressing power by printing can be improved. A print control device that can be improved can be provided. Further, according to the present invention, a computer-readable storage medium is provided which can construct a print control system having excellent usability without preliminarily preparing a printer-specific program such as a printer driver in a client computer. it can.

[0160] Further, according to the present invention, furthermore, a computer reads in high quality image printing can build a print control system capable of improving the printing quality can be addressed
A possible storage medium can be provided. Further, according to the present invention,
Furthermore, if the information file contains moving image data, the moving image can be printed using an appropriate still image, and it is possible to build a print control system that can prevent the loss of moving image information and improve the information expression by printing. It can provide Do storage medium.

[Brief description of drawings]

FIG. 1 is a functional block diagram showing a basic configuration of a print control device of a print control system according to a first embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing the overall configuration of a print control system according to the embodiment.

FIG. 3 is a block diagram showing a hardware configuration of a print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 4 is a diagram showing a structure of hypertext to be printed by the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 5 is a diagram showing an example of a printing process in the embodiment.

FIG. 6 is a diagram showing another example of a printing process in the same embodiment.

FIG. 7 is a diagram showing a structure and a creation example of a job ticket in the embodiment.

FIG. 8 is a diagram showing a structure of components included in an information file according to the first embodiment.

FIG. 9 is a view showing the structure of a component program management table according to the same embodiment.

FIG. 10 is a diagram showing a structure of a print data cache management table in the embodiment.

FIG. 11 is a diagram showing a structure of an information file cache management table in the same embodiment.

FIG. 12 is a diagram showing a structure of a user definition file in the same embodiment.

FIG. 13 is a diagram showing a structure of a bookmark file according to the same embodiment.

FIG. 14 is a flowchart showing an operation of a program that realizes a job ticket receiving unit in the embodiment.

FIG. 15 is a flowchart showing an operation of a program that realizes an autonomous printing unit in the embodiment.

FIG. 16 is a flowchart showing an operation of a program that realizes an information file acquisition unit according to the same embodiment.

FIG. 17 is a flowchart showing an operation of a program that realizes a remote control communication means in the embodiment.

FIG. 18 is a flowchart showing an operation of a program that realizes a job ticket generating unit in the embodiment.

FIG. 19 is a view showing an example of a display screen on the display of the client computer when the job ticket generating means generates a job ticket in the embodiment.

FIG. 20 is a flowchart showing the operation of a program that realizes the autonomous pre-rasterizing means in the embodiment.

FIG. 21 is a functional block diagram showing a basic configuration of a print control device of the print control system according to the second embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 22 is a block diagram showing the overall configuration of a print control system according to the embodiment.

FIG. 23 is a block diagram showing a hardware configuration of a print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 24 is a diagram showing an example of a printing process in the embodiment.

FIG. 25 is a diagram showing the structure of a table A that realizes print data management means of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 26 is a diagram showing the structure of a table C that realizes print data management means of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 27 is a diagram showing a structure of a table B that realizes print data management means of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 28 is a flowchart showing processing by the request reception processing means of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 29 is a flowchart showing processing by a proxy acquisition unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 30 is a flowchart showing a code addition process by the print starting unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 31 is a view showing a template of a code added by the code addition processing function of the print starting means of the print control apparatus and an example of the procedure of the code addition processing in the embodiment.

FIG. 32 is a diagram showing an example of a display screen of an information file on the client computer according to the same embodiment.

FIG. 33 is a flowchart showing a print request receiving process by the print activation unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 34 is a flowchart showing processing by a printing unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 35 is a diagram showing a format example of an information file in the same embodiment.

FIG. 36 is a flowchart showing the processing by the rasterizing means of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 37 is a flowchart showing processing by the high-quality image acquisition unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 38 is a flowchart showing a moving image conversion process by the still image acquisition unit and the moving image conversion unit of the print control apparatus according to the embodiment.

FIG. 39 is a diagram showing a conventional printing process.

FIG. 40 is a diagram showing another conventional printing process.

[Explanation of symbols]

1, 101, 102, 103 ... Server computer 2, 201, 202, 203 ... Client computer 3, 30 ... Print control device 4 ... Job ticket receiving means 5 ... Information file acquisition means 7 ... Autonomous printing means 8 ... Remote operation communication means 303 ... Proxy acquisition means 304 ... Rasterization means 305 ... Print data management means 307 ... Printing means 308 ... Print activation means 309 ... High-quality image acquisition means 310 ... Moving image conversion means 311 ... Still image acquisition means

Continuation of front page (58) Fields surveyed (Int.Cl. 7 , DB name) G06F 3/12 B41J 5/00 B41J 29/00 G06F 13/00 354

Claims (22)

(57) [Claims]
1. A print control apparatus for controlling a printing apparatus by communicating with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, wherein the information file is obtained from the server computer. Means, an information file cache means for temporarily storing the information file acquired by the information file acquisition means in the information file cache, an address of the information file to be printed from the client computer, and a paper Remote control communication means for receiving an input event in which the size, number of copies, etc. are input, job ticket generation means for generating a job ticket based on the input event received by the remote control communication means, and the information If there is an information file indicated by the address of the job ticket in the file cache, print data is created from the information file based on the job ticket, and if there is no information file indicated by the address of the job ticket in the information file cache, A printing method comprising: an autonomous printing means for obtaining an information file indicated by the address of the job ticket from the server computer by using the information file obtaining means, creating print data based on the job ticket, and printing the print data. Control device.
2. A print control apparatus for controlling a printing apparatus by communicating with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer viewing the information file on a display, and obtaining an information file from the server computer. Means, an information file cache means for temporarily storing the information file acquired by the information file acquisition means in the information file cache, an address of the information file to be printed from the client computer, and a paper Remote control communication means for receiving an input event in which the size, number of copies, etc. are input, job ticket generation means for generating a job ticket based on the input event received by the remote control communication means, and the information If the print data of the information file temporarily stored in the file cache and the print data of the information file indicated by the job ticket address are stored in the print data cache Print the print data, and if the print data cache does not have the print data of the information file indicated by the job ticket address, obtain the information file indicated by the job ticket address from the server computer using the information file obtaining means. Then, the print control apparatus is provided with an autonomous printing unit that creates and prints print data based on the job ticket.
3. When the information file has a format in which components are integrated, a component identification means for recognizing the type of the component and determining whether or not it is defined, and a component program acquisition means for obtaining a component program of an undefined component, 3. The print control apparatus according to claim 1, further comprising a component execution unit that calls and executes the component program.
4. An internal storage device or an external storage device is provided with bookmark storage means for storing an address of a server computer, an information file name, etc., and information such as an address of the server computer once input is read from the bookmark storage means. The print control device according to claim 1, wherein the print control device is repeatedly used.
5. A user definition file storage means for defining a user to be used, a user identification means for prompting a user input at the start of the remote control communication means, and a user identification, and a storage area for each user is provided in the bookmark storage means. The print control apparatus according to claim 4, wherein the print control apparatus is a print control apparatus.
6. A computer for controlling a printing device by communicating with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and an information file acquisition means for acquiring the information file from the server computer. An information file cache means for temporarily storing the information file acquired by the information file acquisition means in an information file cache; an address and a paper size of an information file to be transmitted from the client computer and transmitted from the client computer; Remote operation communication means for receiving an input event in which the number of copies and the like are input, job ticket generation means for generating a job ticket based on the input event received by the remote operation communication means, and the information file If there is an information file indicated by the address of the job ticket in the cache, print data is created from the information file based on the job ticket, and if there is no information file indicated by the address of the job ticket in the information file cache, A program for causing an information file indicated by the address of the job ticket to be obtained from the server computer by using the information file obtaining means, creating print data based on the job ticket, and causing the print data to function as an autonomous printing means is recorded. Computer-readable storage medium.
7. A computer that controls a printing device by communicating with a server computer that has an information file and a client computer that browses the information file on a display, and an information file acquisition unit that acquires the information file from the server computer. An information file cache means for temporarily storing the information file acquired by the information file acquisition means in an information file cache; an address and a paper size of an information file to be transmitted from the client computer and transmitted from the client computer; Remote operation communication means for receiving an input event in which the number of copies and the like are input, job ticket generation means for generating a job ticket based on the input event received by the remote operation communication means, and the information file Autonomous pre-rasterizing means for creating print data of an information file temporarily stored in the cache and temporarily storing it in the print data cache; and if print data of the information file indicated by the address of the job ticket is in the print data cache, print it. If data is printed and if there is no print data of the information file indicated by the job ticket address in the print data cache, the information file acquisition means is used to obtain the information file indicated by the job ticket address from the server computer. A computer-readable storage medium storing a program for creating print data based on the job ticket and causing the print data to function as an autonomous printing unit.
8. A component identifying means for recognizing the type of a component and determining whether or not the component is defined when the information file has a format in which the components are integrated, and a component program acquisition for obtaining a component program of an undefined component. 8. The computer-readable storage medium according to claim 6 or 7, which stores a means and a program for functioning as a component execution means that calls and executes a component program.
9. A computer is caused to function as a bookmark storage means for storing an address of a server computer, an information file name, etc. in an internal storage device or an external storage device, and information such as the address of the server computer input once is stored in the bookmark storage device. 8. The computer-readable storage medium according to claim 6, wherein a program for reading out from the means and executing the repeated use is recorded.
10. A user definition file storage means for defining a user of a computer,
10. The computer-readable device according to claim 9, wherein a user identification unit that prompts a user input at the start of the remote control communication unit to identify the user and a program for functioning as a bookmark storage unit having a storage area for each user are recorded. Storage medium.
11. A print control device, which communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and controls a printing device. When this is received from the server computer, this information request is sent to the server computer, and when an information file sent from the server computer is received, this information file is sent to the client computer. Rasterizing means for converting the information file into bitmap data printable by the printing device; print data managing means for managing the bitmap data converted by the rasterizing means; And a printing unit that causes the printing apparatus to print the bitmap data of the information file managed by the rasterizing unit when a print request for the information file viewed on the display of the ant computer is received. Print control device.
12. A print control device for controlling a printing device, which communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and requests a client computer for an information file for the information file to be browsed on the display. When this is received from the server computer, this information request is sent to the server computer, and when an information file sent from the server computer is received, this information file is sent to the client computer. Rasterizing means for converting the information file into bitmap data that can be printed by the printing device, and program code for the client computer to send a print request. When a print request is received from the client computer that has executed the code addition function to be added to the information file to be sent to the computer and the program code added by this code addition function, the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means is sent. A printing control device comprising: a printing unit that causes the printing device to print.
13. A print control device for controlling a printing device, which communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and requests the information file of the information file for browsing on the display from the client computer. When the information file is received from the server computer, the information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, the proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting the information file to the client computer, and the image data in the information file Requesting the server computer for image data having a resolution and gradation number suitable for the capability of the printing device by referring to the high-quality image information attached to the high-quality image data. And a high-quality image acquisition means for receiving the high-quality image acquisition means, when calling the high-quality image acquisition means when the image data is detected in the information file acquired by the proxy acquisition means, the high-quality image acquired by this high-quality image acquisition means Rasterizing means for receiving and converting into bitmap data printable by the printing device; and printing means for causing the printing device to print the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means when a print request is received from the client computer. A print control device comprising:
14. A print control device, which communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and controls a printing device. When this is received from the server computer, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and moving image data in the information file And a moving image converting means for converting one scene at an arbitrary time into still image data, and the moving image converting means is called when moving image data is detected in the information file acquired by the proxy acquiring means, and this moving image is called. Rasterizing means for receiving the still image data converted by the converting means and converting it into bitmap data printable by the printing device, and bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means when a print request is received from the client computer. A printing control device comprising: a printing unit that causes the printing device to print.
15. A print control device for controlling a printing device, which communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display, and requests an information file for the information file to be browsed on the display from the client computer. When this is received from the server computer, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and moving image data in the information file With still image acquisition means for requesting still image data from the server computer with reference to still image information attached to, and receiving the corresponding still image data from the server computer, and the proxy acquisition means. Rasterizing means for receiving still image data from the still image acquiring means when moving image data is detected in the obtained information file and converting it into bitmap data printable by the printing device, and a print request from the client computer Then, the print control device is provided with a printing device that causes the printing device to print the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing device.
16. The rasterizing means converts the information file into bitmap data that can be printed by the printing device before the print request is received using the idle time zone. 2. The print control device according to any one of 1.
17. A computer that communicates with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer that browses the information file on a display, and that controls a printing device, receives an information request for the information file that is browsed on the display from the client computer. Then, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, the proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and the proxy acquisition means acquired by this proxy acquisition means Rasterizing means for converting the information file into bitmap data printable by the printing device; print data managing means for managing the bitmap data converted by the rasterizing means; When a print request for the information file viewed on the display of the computer is received, a program for causing the printing device to print the bitmap data of the information file managed by the rasterizing means is recorded. Computer-readable storage medium.
18. A computer that communicates with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer that browses the information file on a display, and that controls a printing device receives an information request for the information file that is browsed on the display from the client computer. Then, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, the proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and the proxy acquisition means acquired by this proxy acquisition means Rasterizing means for converting an information file into bitmap data that can be printed by the printing device, and program code for a client computer to send a print request to the client. When a print request is received from a code addition function to be added to an information file to be transmitted to a computer and a client computer that has executed the program code added by this code addition function, the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means is described as above. A computer-readable storage medium in which a program for causing a printing device to function as a printing unit is recorded.
19. A computer that communicates with a server computer provided with an information file and a client computer that browses the information file on a display, and that controls a printing device receives an information request for the information file that is browsed on the display from the client computer. Then, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when an information file transmitted from the server computer is received, a proxy acquisition unit having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer and an image data in the information file are attached. Requesting the server computer for image data having a resolution and gradation number suitable for the capability of the printing apparatus by referring to the high-quality image information to be received, and receiving the corresponding high-quality image data from the server computer. High-definition image acquisition means, to call the high-definition image acquisition means when detecting image data in the information file acquired by the proxy acquisition means, receives the high-quality image acquired by this high-quality image acquisition means, Rasterizing means for converting into bitmap data printable by the printing device, and functioning as printing means for causing the printing device to print the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means when a print request is received from the client computer. A computer-readable storage medium in which a program for recording is recorded.
20. A server computer provided with an information file and a client computer for browsing the information file on a display respectively communicate with each other, and a computer for controlling a printing device receives an information request for the information file for browsing on the display from the client computer. Then, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, a proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and arbitrary moving image data in the information file Moving image conversion means for converting one scene of time into still image data, and the moving image conversion means is called when moving image data is detected in the information file acquired by the proxy acquisition means, and this moving image conversion is performed. Rasterizing means for receiving the still image data converted by the stage and converting it into bitmap data printable by the printing device, and bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means when a print request is received from the client computer, A computer-readable storage medium in which a program for causing a printing device to function as a printing unit is recorded.
21. A computer that communicates with a server computer having an information file and a client computer that browses the information file on a display, and that controls a printing device receives a request for an information file browsed by the display from the client computer. Then, this information request is transmitted to the server computer, and when the information file transmitted from the server computer is received, proxy acquisition means having a function of transmitting this information file to the client computer, and the moving image data in the information file are attached. Requesting still image data from the server computer by referring to the still image information, and acquiring the corresponding still image data from the server computer by the still image acquisition means and the proxy acquisition means. Rasterizing means for receiving still image data from the still image acquiring means when moving image data is detected in the information file and converting it into bitmap data printable by the printing device, and receiving a print request from the client computer A computer-readable storage medium in which a program for causing the printing device to print the bitmap data of the information file converted by the rasterizing means is recorded.
22. A program for causing a computer to function as a rasterizing means for converting an information file into bitmap data printable in a printing device before receiving a print request using an idle time zone is recorded. Claims 17 to 2
1. A computer-readable storage medium according to any one of 1.
JP10845697A 1997-02-03 1997-04-25 Print control device and computer-readable storage medium Expired - Fee Related JP3519240B2 (en)

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