Pcounter Station

Pcounter Station is software that runs on a dedicated Windows PC, to be used in controlled or pay-to-print environments.  After users send print jobs from other workstations, they can approach the station, select the jobs they wish to send to the printer, make deposits to accounts, and/or submit some form of payment through devices such as card readers or cash machines.  Pcounter Station locks down the PC so that users cannot exit, and the Pcounter Station software is the only application that is shown on the computer’s display.

Features

Pcounter Station works with print queues hosted on Windows and NetWare.  NetWare support includes NDPS and iPrint printers, and NDS queues.

Pcounter Station can also be used optionally in combination with Pcounter and the Pcounter Popup to provide a secure, password-protected release station.

Pcounter Station with vending support can be used in the following ways:

  • A dedicated deposit station where users can add credit to Pcounter network accounts.
  • A combination deposit and secure release station.
  • Users can pay for individual print jobs using one of the supported devices.

Includes built-in secure LPD server and NetWare queue server for transfer of print jobs from remote print servers to local printers (such as parallel and USB) on the Pcounter Station machine.

Pcounter Station displays the following languages:

  • English
  • French
  • Spanish
  • German
  • Portuguese
  • Swedish
  • Danish
  • Finnish
  • Czech
  • Dutch


All text that is displayed is totally customizable.

Print Job Handling

Pcounter Station can be configured to manage multiple printers and/or route jobs to one or more destination printers.  The following configuration scenarios are possible:

  • Multiple Pcounter Stations can be configured to monitor the same source queue, each with its own unique single destination.  Each destination is connected to a printer which is physically located near each station.  (Pull printing)
  • A single Pcounter Station can be configured with multiple destinations for a single source queue.  Destinations are connected to similar printers, and users may choose an idle printer, achieving a type of load balancing.
  • Print jobs can be forwarded to remote destinations which may not have payment options that are available at the Pcounter Station site.
  • Each Pcounter Station can be configured to watch multiple source print queues.
  • Each source print queue can be configured with one or more destinations, or simply to release the paused/held jobs waiting in that queue.

Campus Payments

The following campus payment systems are supported by Pcounter Station.

  • Blackboard Transaction System
  • CBORD Odyssey
  • CBORD CS Gold
  • CardSmith
  • Heartland/General Meters


Typically the account numbers are recognized via a magnetic card swipe wedge reader at the station.

Download Pcounter Campus Card white paper: Pcounter-Campus-Card.pdf

Cash Payments

Pcounter Station can be used along with our TBS 9900X coin/bill unit, to provide Pcounter deposit and "pay to print" services in academic lab and library environments.  Together, they can provide 24x7 automated deposit services to Pcounter printing accounts.  This also eliminates the need for staff to handle cash directly. 

  • The TBS 9900X can be wall-mounted, or purchased with an optional floor stand.
  • An optional card reader can be installed, which allows the TBS 9900X to be used as a card add-value station.TBS 9900X
  • The TBS 9900X can also be connected to a copier (copier interface cable required) at the same time as Pcounter Station, providing simultaneous print and copy cash vending.
  • Pcounter Station software with vending support is included with the purchase of a TBS 9900X.

Payment Devices

The following devices (connected to the computer's serial port) are supported for payment:

  • TBS 9500/9900X coin/bill pay station
  • Cartadis TC4N and TCRS card readers
  • Danyl/Schlumberger D/AUX card reader
  • Debitek Magnetic and Chip card readers
  • ITC Systems 1015/2015 and ACT 350 card readers
  • Jamex 6557 coin/bill pay station
  • Jamex 7114 card reader
  • Calcluator (For testing purposes, uses the Windows calculator app to simulate a payment device)

Other third-party devices are available via selected vendors.

Requirements

  • Windows 2000 or later, with Internet Explorer 6 or later.
  • NetWare support requires Novell Client 32.
  • Pcounter running on the print server in order for page counts and cost of print jobs to be calculated, and/or to automatically pause jobs in print queues.
  • A CPU fast enough and sufficient RAM to run the OS efficiently.