Martin Osieka

Print It (Tools Effect)

39 posts in this topic

::PluginIndex::Effect::Print It::0.9::2014-09-03::Martin Osieka::Print the current layer or the flattened image::

 

The 'Print It' plugin prints the current layer. To print the whole image you have to flatten the image first to one layer. Beside of the basic printer settings you may select
- The area to layout your image (Whole paper, printable area, Paper with margins)
- The size of the image ('Print Size', Scaled 'Print Size', Fit to area, Fit large only to area,
  Stretch to area, Stretch large only to area).
- The sized image can the be aligned inside of the area to the corners, sides or the center.
  An additional offset is possible.

- Tiling allows to place an image multiple times on the same page.

- Poster printing allows to stretch one image to multiple pages
- Header and footer lines are available
- A watermark can be overlayed to the printout

The non-printable area of the image is colored red in the preview. The margin or gaps area is colored green.

 

Download

Find the latest version Print It v0.9 (3.9.2014)  here.

 

Installation

- Copy the two files OptionBasedLibrary vX.X.dll/.dlc to the Paint.NET\ folder (NOT to Paint.NET\Effects\ !!!)
- Copy the two files PrintIt.Effect.dll/.dlc to the Paint.NET\Effects\ folder
- Do not remove older versions of the OptionBasedLibrary if they are required from other plugins.

 

After a restart of Paint.NET you will find the plugin at Menu->Effects->Tools->Print It

(oder für deutschsprachige Anwender unter Menu->Effekte->Werkzeuge->Druck es ;-)

 

Compatibility

Paint.NET 3.5.11 and 4.0.3 (Tested on Windows XP and Windows 7)

 

Supported languages

English, Deutsch
 

Keywords

Print, Header and Footer, Watermark, Tiles, Multipage, Poster,
Drucken, Kopf- und Fußzeilen, Wasserzeichen, Kacheln, Mehrseitig, Plakat

 

Configuration options

 

PrintIt.Dialog.PrinterPage.jpg

 

Select the printer and the basic paper settings. The printer properties button allows you to set
more specific details (like Duplex). If you switch the printer then it may happen that one or
more of the other settings are no longer selected (i.e. because the printer does not support
the previously selected paper format). Just choose one of the available settings.
The printout name is used in progress dialog, as proposed filename for file printers, and as
{Print.Name} keyword in text output.

 

PrintIt.Dialog.LayoutPage.jpg

 

The 'paper area' choice defines which area of the paper is used to print the image. 'Image size'
defines the size of the image in the area and 'image location' the alignment in the area.
In the preview the non-printable area of the paper is marked in red, user defines margins in green.

 

PrintIt.Dialog.TilesPage.jpg

 

You may print an image multiple times in the area depending on the 'number of tiles' choice.
The distance between the tiles areas can be set via the spacing options. In the preview the
spacing is colored in red.

 

PrintIt.Dialog.HeaderFooterPage.jpg

 

You may add a header and/or a footer text line to your printout. Each line has three areas:
Left aligned, centered, and right aligned text. The texts may contain keywords which will be
replaced at printout time (see Keywords). Font name, size, and style can be selected.
Header and footer will be placed at the top or respectively at the bottom of the page area.
The page area will then be shrinked by the height value. If the font is larger than the height
then the line will overlap the page area. In the preview header and footer are colored in blue.

 

PrintIt.Dialog.WatermarkPage.jpg

 

A watermark can be printed as overlay to the paper area (or the tiles area). You may select
the text of the watermark, font, style, and color. The height of the text is always 10%
of the area height in the moment. Afrer the look of the watermark is defined the watermark
can be placed, aligned, and rotated in the area.

 

Keywords used in text output

In the moment the following keywords are defined:
{Print.Name}   The Name of the printout from the Printer tab.
{Print.Page}   The current page number
{Print.Pages} The number of pages

 

Remark

 

This version is not final but it should be good enough to discuss what you expect from a printing tool.

I'm not telling what's on the list in the moment. Tell us what you like to get.

 

Issues depending on the Paint.NET plugin API

- The Paint.NET API does not provide the title (or filename of the image). The plugin uses the Title 'Document' to show progress or as argument for an PDF printer.
 

History

 

0.9 (3.9.2014)
- The preview controls moved to a collapsable control outside of the tabs.
- The preview control allows to activate a 1:1 mode. In this mode a zoom value of 100% means that that the size of the document on screen is
  exactly the size of the sheet. For this mode you have to enter the calibrated DPI value of your screen.
. Printer tab: The entries in the printer names combobox are sorted now
- Printer tab: Sheet and poster size infos respect the preview unit setting
- Printer tab: Virtual sheet tells the amount of real sheets
- Printer tab: Added 'Collate' switch if number of copies is greater than one (Be warned not all printer drivers are able to handle this)
- Printer tab: Some printers do not support 'Copies'. In this case the Number of copies entry will be disabled.
- Printer tab: Added printer status and type information. Status message changes may be slow on some devices. It depends in most cases on the printer driver.
- Printer tab: Added print source: In the moment just the active layer. 'Print It - collection' will allow you to create a collection of images in the future.
. Printer tab: Added feature to restrict the print source to the selected area
- Printer tab: Added range of sheets: All sheets, Selected range of sheets
- Printer tab: Added a test print button. Test page can be used to check the printable area of the sheet and to correct the offset later.
- If the printer test page shows that the center is not in the center of the sheet then the offset of the printable area may be wrong.
  To nodify the offset you can edit the .ppd file of the printer or just add the variables PAH=x and/or PAV=y to the printer comment (x and y are values in cm).
- Layout tab: Info texts for area size, original image size and new image size are implemented.
- Layout tab: The new image size shows you the real print dpi value which helps to decide if the original image provides enough pixels.
- Layout tab: Scaling control of "Image Size = Scale Print Size of Image" shows now a 'keep in sync' button to keep the aspect ratio of the image intact.
- Layout tab: The margins control should be more user friendly now
- The text of the OK button has been changed to 'Print'

0.8 (12.8.2014)
- Poster printing allows to stretch one image to multiple pages
- F1 key links to the forum page of 'Print It'
- Shows in the title line the active element to print

0.7 (12.07.2014) see download link above
- Replaced the preview control with a more generic version
- Added OptionControls and contextmenu to handle zoom, location, and alignment of the document in the preview.
  This includes setting to control background and passepartout colors.
  Most of the standard keyboard shortcuts and mouse actions are supported in the preview.
- Fixed some minor issues on printout.

0.6 (9.6.2014)
- Added 'Header&Footer' tab.
- Menu->'Repeat Print It' (Ctrl-F) is now ignored.
- The dpi value of the image will be requested in a separate dialog now.
  This request will be removed if a newer version of Paint.NET offers the DPI value of the image to the plugin.

 

0.5 (5.6.2014)
- Added 'Watermark' tab
- Added 'Printout Name' to the printer tab. This name is used from some drivers in the progress dialog or
  by printers which create a file instead of a printout (like PDFCreator).
- Added 'Printout Copies'. In earlier version you had to set this value in the printer properties.
- Click to preview toggles the visibility of the cues (i.e. for margins)  

0.4 (2.6.2014)
- Added 'Tiles' Tab. Tiling allows to place an image multiple times on the same page.

0.3 (31.5.2014)
- First public release
 

Edited by Martin Osieka
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Update 0.4 (2.6.2014)
- Added 'Tiles' Tab. Tiling allows to place an image multiple times on the same page.

 

PrintIt.Dialog.TilesPage.jpg

Edited by Martin Osieka
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Update 0.5 (5.6.2014)
- Added watermark tab
- Added 'Printout Name' to the printer tab. This name is used from some drivers in the progress dialog or
  by printers which create a file instead of a printout (like PDFCreator).
- Added 'Printout Copies'. In earlier version you had to set this value in the printer properties.
- Click to preview toggles the visibility of the cues (i.e. for margins)  
 

PrintIt.Dialog.WatermarkPage.jpg

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This looks very interesting indeed. Cheers Martin B)

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This looks very interesting indeed. Cheers Martin B)

 

;-) Just wondering that there are no error reports... Different hardware causes problems typically.

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Update 0.6 (9.6.2014)
- Added 'Header&Footer' tab.
- Menu->'Repeat Print It' (Ctrl-F) is now ignored.
- The dpi value of the image will be requested in a separate dialog now.
  This request will be removed if a newer version of Paint.NET offers the DPI value of the image to the plugin.
 

PrintIt.Dialog.HeaderFooterPage.jpg

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;-) Just wondering that there are no error reports... Different hardware causes problems typically.

Not had any issues so far (HP Photosmart Premium)

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Wow. Another plugin to add to the list! Nice work!

 

Hope it is usefull. Even if printing is nowadays less important.

Still there are some features on our internal list.

Next should be a collection tab which allows you - instead of printing immediatly - to collect some images and print them together (on tiled pages).

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Some how missed this little gem...getsmileyCA97FZW9.gif.OK OK I wasnt paying attention again-sigh 

Great idea Martin; This can make our printing decisions more clear, so we get what we "thought" we were setting up for.

Thanks smiley-happy096_zps8752ffdf.gif

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Update 0.7 (12.07.2014)
- Replaced the preview control with a more generic version
- Added OptionControls and contextmenu to handle zoom, location, and alignment of the document in the preview.
  This includes setting to control background and passepartout colors.
  Most of the standard keyboard shortcuts and mouse actions are supported in the preview.

 

This kind of handling of the view control will be used in other plugins in the future. So even if it is not quiet useful for this plugin please report if it is not working as expected (using keyboard, mouse, wheel, tilt buttons, pen,..).

 

 

PrintIt.Dialog.ViewControl.jpg

 

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Thanks for the update Martin, nice work B)

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+1.   Thanks Martin!

 

Passepartout?

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Passepartout?

 

Bad spelling, bad wording, or just an unusual functionality?

 

A passepartout is the area between picture frame and picture. In a real world painting it's a peace of paper covering the area to get a distance to the glass. OK I remember that I used a translator to check but looking in Wikipedia the better word may be  'Mat'. But a little bit french is not to bad, or? ;-)

 

Just got a new Wacom Intuos, so you can expect other tools.

Edited by Martin Osieka
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I'm happy with a bit of French. Some users might find it bewildering.

Surround, Border, Margin or Inner Frame would be acceptable English alternatives.

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AH, parle vu Américain?  In my coroner of the world, You'd be using words as  border or mat or, because we are kinda linguistically weird, mat border.

But I have to admit, for the extra special framed art, Passepartout, lends a certain  savoir-faire to the whole thing.  

 

Thus ends my Americanized French usage for today,  Au revoir 5d245db7.gif

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Thanks for the responses. I agree for now that a little bit french does not hurt in this case. And it's german too.

Maybe I will go for 'Surround Color' later. Sounds quite understandable for me,

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0.8 (12.8.2014)
- Poster printing allows to stretch one image to multiple sheets of paper
- F1 key links to the forum page of 'Print It'
- Shows in the title line the active element to print
 

Maybe some additional remarks to poster printing:

PrintIt.PosterPrintingOptions.jpg

 

If the option 'Combine multiple pages to a poster' is clicked then you are printing to a virtual paper which consist of multiple physical papers. In the preview the indivual pages are separated by red dividers. You can use all other options as usual because the mapping from the virtual paper to the real sheets is done at print time.

 

The size of the virtual paper is the printable area of the physical paper multiplied with the rows and columns of the virtual paper plus one time the non-printable border of the physical paper. You got it?

The overlap can be used to glue the sheets together. So do not cut away all non-printable borders.

 

In theory you may create from 100 A4 sheets a poster in the size 2m x 3m.

No, I didn't tested this ;-)

Edited by Martin Osieka
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Thanks good information. I  just hacked together a "poster" using windows and ....well it got done.

 

I'll use this method next time for sure. (Yea!, PDN)

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ThanI'll use this method next time for sure. (Yea!, PDN)

 

If so then please tell us your user experience. It is sometimes difficult for the techies to tell if an UI is usable.

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Update 0.9 (3.9.2014)
- The preview controls moved to a collapsable control outside of the tabs.
- The preview control allows to activate a 1:1 mode. In this mode a zoom value of 100% means that that the size of the document on screen is
  exactly the size of the sheet. For this mode you have to enter the calibrated DPI value of your screen.
. Printer tab: The entries in the printer names combobox are sorted now
- Printer tab: Sheet and poster size infos respect the preview unit setting
- Printer tab: Virtual sheet tells the amount of real sheets
- Printer tab: Added 'Collate' switch if number of copies is greater than one (Be warned not all printer drivers are able to handle this)
- Printer tab: Some printers do not support 'Copies'. In this case the Number of copies entry will be disabled.
- Printer tab: Added printer status and type information. Status message changes may be slow on some devices. It depends in most cases on the printer driver.
- Printer tab: Added print source: In the moment just the active layer. 'Print It - collection' will allow you to create a collection of images in the future.
. Printer tab: Added feature to restrict the print source to the selected area
- Printer tab: Added range of sheets: All sheets, Selected range of sheets
- Printer tab: Added a test print button. Test page can be used to check the printable area of the sheet and to correct the offset later.
- If the printer test page shows that the center is not in the center of the sheet then the offset of the printable area may be wrong.
  To nodify the offset you can edit the .ppd file of the printer or just add the variables PAH=x and/or PAV=y to the printer comment (x and y are values in cm).
- Layout tab: Info texts for area size, original image size and new image size are implemented.
- Layout tab: The new image size shows you the real print dpi value which helps to decide if the original image provides enough pixels.
- Layout tab: Scaling control of "Image Size = Scale Print Size of Image" shows now a 'keep in sync' button to keep the aspect ratio of the image intact.
- Layout tab: The margins control should be more user friendly now
- The text of the OK button has been changed to 'Print'
 

PrintIt.Dialog.1to1Dialog.jpg

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After adding some options in the latest releases I see the risk that some users will tell: I just like to print an image and not to check a lot of options. So I'm thinking about to add an Overview page (like in the following dummy):

 

PrintIt.Dialog.OverviewPage.jpg

 

All items in the Overview are command buttons. Clicking them will select the option in the related tab.

 

Any opinion (pros and/or cons) from the user perspective?

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I like this idea Martin. Basics supplied first with the option to drill down for more complex configurations. Logical and user friendly.

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