Traditional print environments typically utilize print servers – physical devices that connect to the network and manage printers that are connected to them. Put simply, dedicated print servers serve as an intermediary between workstations and printers, store and queue print requests locally, and ensure jobs are delivered to the appropriate device.
The problem with print servers
The problem with print servers is that they are expensive to purchase, consume a lot of energy, and place a significant burden on IT resources. Think driver management, device deployment, end-user provisioning, print queue management, security updates and patching, the list goes on.
And that’s before you factor in the fact that servers represent a single point of failure – which means that if the server goes down, it’s impossible to print, not to mention the inherent security risks – sadly, reports of unpatched servers being exploited in the wild are not uncommon.
Time to take print to the cloud
With Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2 reaching end-of-support on October 10, 2023, which means Microsoft will stop providing technical support and bug fixes for issues that may impact the usability or stability of servers running the two products – there’s never been a better time to go serverless.
A serverless cloud-based print management solution eliminates the need for on-premise print servers entirely, reducing the cost and time associated with procuring, managing, and securing physical servers.
The directprint.io serverless print management and monitoring platform streamlines print management from end-to-end. It’s easy to automate time-intensive tasks and centrally manage printing devices and printing. End-users gain access to fast and reliable printing from any device or location, while IT are free from the burden of managing multiple queues, drivers, and firmware management.
No more printing pain points
Serverless printing offers numerous benefits when compared to an on-premise environment across cost savings, scalability, improved efficiency, enhanced security, and end-user convenience.
directprint.io is compatible with all leading printer makes and models and provides a consistent print experience across all devices and platforms. Network-connected devices are automatically onboarded to the directprint.io platform and the Device Radar tool leverages artificial intelligence to set individual devices’ best-known configuration and enable advanced finishing features where available.
Seamless integration with Microsoft 365, Google Workspace and Chrome OS, provides admins with frictionless deployment. And directory sync capabilities with Google Workspace and Microsoft Azure AD ensures users are allocated printers based on their login, so as soon as they turn their machine on, they automatically get the correct list of available printers.
In addition, directprint.io can also monitor printer status, device health, paper levels, volumes, toner levels, and more. Available as an optional extra, the advanced device monitoring capabilities reduce printer downtime and help IT admins stay ahead of print-related support tickets.
Plus, because the print infrastructure is hosted in the cloud, it’s always-on and always available, putting an end to print-related IT tickets from end-users who can’t print when they want to.
Smart and secure
Unlike on-premise print servers which can be a vulnerable point of access for bad actors, sophisticated security is a hallmark of serverless printing.
Printers remain on a secure network and cannot be exposed to vulnerabilities that are common with personal devices and home networks.
Direct-IP printing keeps print jobs securely on a customer’s local network and customers can leverage secure print capabilities to monitor sensitive documents and ensure they are released only by authorized users. IT admins can also apply print policies to groups, individuals, and specific devices for added security in the workplace, and directprint.io also supports zero trust environments.
Edge Print technology enables end-users to securely print when they are not on the same network as the printer, and Google Workspace and Microsoft Azure integration, ensures IT can control which users can print remotely for added security.
Plus, updates or security fixes are automatically managed in the cloud.
If you’d like to find out more about how easy it is to modernize your on-premise print environment and migrate print to the cloud, why not sign up for a 30-day free trial?
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