Setting Up the Fastback PowisPrinter With PowisPrint Software
This article is designed to outline the system requirements, connections and installation instructions for getting your PowisPrinter set up and running with your computer. If you are looking to use your Fastback P31 PowisPrinter with your computer you are going to need to set it up and install the PowisPrinter software.
The PowisPrinter and its software were actually developed quite some time ago. As such the minimum requirements for the software are far below the standards for most current computers. According to Powis Parker the minimum requirements are a 486/Pentium computer, 16MB of Ram, 20MB of Hard Drive space, a 17" monitor, a mouse, a serial port and a windows 95/98/NT/XP computer. Of these requirements, there are only two that users may need to worry about. Many new computers may not come with a serial port since most new devices use USB. Users without a serial port should be able to use a USB to serial port adapter that you can find at most local computer stores. The other concern is that many new computers come loaded with Windows Vista. In our testing the PowisPrint software did not work in Windows Vista. This is something to be aware of at least until Powis comes out with a new version of their software.
Connecting the PowisPrinter to Your Computer
The Fastback P31 PowisPrinter is designed to be connected to your computer using a standard 9 pin serial cable (included with the printer). As we noted above, some computers no longer have serial ports included. You may need to invest in a USB to Serial port conversion cable. In order to connect the PowisPrinter to your computer you will need to unplug the keyboard from the unit. You won't need the keyboard using this configuration since you will use your computer to create the titles.
Installing the PowisPrint Software
After your computer is connected to the PowisPrinter you will need to install the new PowisPrint software. In order to run this software you will need to make sure that your display resolution is set to at least 800 x 600. There aren't many users who run at resolutions lower than this anymore but at lower resolutions the software won't run. To actually start the installation process just insert the CD into your machine, the installer should start automatically. If it doesn't start automatically you can browse to the CD and run the setup.exe file. Follow the onscreen installation instructions and the software should be installed in a few minutes. It will even create an icon inside the Programs section of the start menu.
The first time that you go to run the software you will need to specify the COM port associated with the Serial port that the printer is attached to. More than likely the printer will be attached to COM1 or COM2 (higher ports are usually reserved for modems). If you aren't sure which port to use, you might be able to check in your windows device manager. Otherwise you could just try one and then change the setting later if it doesn't work. If you are using a USB to serial port adapter you might need to check the instructions that came with the adapter to determine the COM port that it uses.
After you have connected the printer and installed the software, you should be ready to begin designing high quality printed Fastback strips. Using the PowisPrint software you can produce far more elaborate designs that are possible with the PowisPrinter keyboard. You can even use your own fonts and graphics on the strips. Try it out for yourself. The possibilities are almost endless.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
If you are interested in more information about the Fastback PowisPrinter with PowisPrint Software or are looking for Fastback Binding Machines or Fastback Binding Strips you should visit MyBinding.com. They are the largest online dealer for Powis Parker Fastback products in the United States. In fact, they carry the entire line of Powis Parker Fastback binding products.