Magenta Systems

Magenta Printing Software

Quality Printing for Wang WP, WP Plus and VS DP


Magenta Printing is printer driver software for use on Wang VS, OIS and Alliance systems, from Wang WP, WP Plus and VS DP. It can co-exist with the standard Wang peripherals software, compared with which it offers major enhancements and flexibility. In general, references to the VS, also refer to OIS and Alliance.

It can be used with a number of Wang laser printers or, in conjunction with the Wang Printer Interface Box PIB10-64 (or a PC with WLOC or certain other interfaces), with many industry-standard laser, ink-jet, daisy-wheel and matrix printers. These are accessed from within WP or WP Plus as if they were regular system printers.

Magenta Printing operates in the normal Wang environment, as a natural extension of the standard software; no non-Wang processors are involved (although the software is capable of running on some third party interfaces).


Product Description

Magenta Printing provides enhancements at, essentially, two levels:

1 - Those ('basic features') which are intrinsic to the software or which are set for the system, the printer or the font. These include:

2 - Those ('dynamic features') which the operator can set and reset for the document, within the document. Unless relating to a whole page (such as bin selection and top margin), changes can be as often as required within a page. The main dynamic features are:

All features are available for both WP and WP Plus, except where WP Plus itself provides them, or something similar. Some features are also available for VS DP. Those relevant to WP only are:

How It Works

The basic features are set up (and changed) from simple configuration menus accessed from an optionally passworded utilities menu. On-line HELP and HOTPRINT are available in these menus.

The dynamic features are set in the document by using simple codes which do not print. For example, !@BL20! would change the left margin to 20 and !@BLx! would change it back to the default on the Print Summary. In WP Plus, the codes must have option style; in WP, (-NOTE-) symbols are used instead of '!'; in VS DP a double !! is used at the start of the code.

Magenta Printing will print standard WP, WP Plus, Alliance WP, OIS Scientific Typing, OIS text files, VS DP print files (not directly from the DP queue), PC job files and PC ASCII files. Printers on VS/OIS can accept output from PC applications such as Pagemaker.

For Background Printing, the document or file is queued to the unit or route to which the printer is attached, in the normal way. For Local Printing, the procedure is similar except that a special device number (usually '00' is used) and, unless printing is by spooling to the PC disk, the workstation cannot be used until printing has finished.

The same document can be printed, without modification, by either Magenta Printing or the standard software, although in the latter case the extra features will be ignored. Magenta Printing does not, therefore, involve unnecessary re-training or new system procedures; operators can be trained to use only those features which they require and operators not needing any of them do not even have to know that the standard software is not being used.

A PC workstation can be used for both Background and Local Printing, but not both at the same time. When being used for Background Printing, the PC is dedicated to the printer and cannot be used for other purposes. With Local Printing, two or more PCs can share the same printer through a sharer box. On the VS, no background tasks are normally involved (optionally, one can be run if Magenta Printing is used for DP file printing), the processing being handled mainly in the interface or the PC WLOC board. Unlike some other printing 'solutions', there is no greater load on the VS CPU than with normal Wang WP printing.

Printing speed is, generally, similar to that achieved using the standard software but may (e.g. on the LCS15) be appreciably faster when loading fonts but may be slower if some of the more complex features (such as images) are used.

Printer Overview

The features available depend on the printer being used and (only in the case of some third party interface boxes) on the interface. All features (except colour, bins and duplex) are available on all the Wang laser printers mentioned above and on the Hewlett-Packard LaserJet ranges. Some are not available on a few models (e.g. the original LaserJet) and ink-jet printers; more are not available on matrix and daisy-wheel printers.

Even on daisy-wheel and matrix printers (and lasers attached through certain third party interface boxes), a significant number of extra features are available, such as system information printing, line jump and margin settings. Magenta Printing will (unlike the standard software) support matrix and daisy-wheel printers through the Wang PIB, which is of relevance to customers requiring impact printers for multi-copy stationery.

Magenta Printing can drive most printers which emulate any of those mentioned above, although there may be some features which are not available.

Apart from the obvious factors of the physical capabilities of the printer and the loading of the system, the following hardware considerations affect the speed of printing, especially if soft fonts are being loaded to the printer:

Font Capabilities

A utility is provided which makes it possible, using a PC workstation, to transfer industry-standard PC fonts to the VS. Prepared bitmapped fonts can be transferred directly from the PC disk (in a PC drive) to a disk on the main system. Alternatively, a font scaling program (such as HP Type Director or Bitstream Fontware) can be run on the PC (a hard disk is required) to produce individual fonts (each size and style required) from master outline fonts and these can then be transferred from the PC hard disk directly to the main system.

With HP LaserJet IIP, IID, III, 4 and 5 printers (and Wang and other equivalents), it is not necessary to have both portrait and landscape versions of most fonts; portrait will, automatically, be converted to landscape, when required. Scalable soft fonts are supported on LaserJet III, 4 and 5 (and similar) printers.

Fonts take from 8KB to 1MB, dependent on size and whether bitmapped or scalable, although a font for a Canon Laser Beam printer will take up more space than the same font for an HP LaserJet printer.

Normally, the software will endeavour to find all the fonts requested by the document, if necessary downloading soft fonts. However, it is possible to control whether or not soft fonts are allowed to be used.

It is also possible to specify, for the printer driver, those fonts which, once used, are automatically retained in printer memory. This saves the time loading them for each document being printed. . Such fonts can, if necessary, be cleared from within a document to make room for other fonts.

On OIS WISE networks, soft fonts can be located on any system and Magenta Printing incorporates a feature which allows WP printing to be on any printer on the network, transparently to the user.

Print Preview

Print Preview allows the previewing, on any standard WP workstation, of the eventual printing format for the WP or WP Plus document. It takes into account proportional spacing, line spacing, word wrap, font sizes, tracking etc - in fact, virtually everything which is taken into account at the printer. Because the workstation cannot do this graphically, it is not, however, 'WYSIWYG'.

Words are shown on the lines on which they will print, line numbers (in points if required) are displayed, headers and footers (correctly numbered) are included on each page and the font applicable to each character can also be indicated, as can Magenta codes.

If applicable, documents are shown merged and multiple columns (including WP dual column print) are displayed with columns side by side. Font sizes cannot be shown as such, nor can images, lines, boxes etc, although the relevant commands can be.

Printer Communications

There are two means of using industry standard printers, either by using direct printing or print spooling.

Queuing to Local Printing

The latest versions of Wang Word Processing (4.P or later) and Control Functions (including Queue Control 5.0 or later) support local printing from the normal print menus. Local printing is performed by queuing to the special queue 'LPT' ('LP' on the OIS) or 'U00', but rather than a normal background queue job being created, printing is performed immediately on the workstation or PC, with progress being shown by screen messages.

For WP Plus and Alliance WP, the 'Local Print' menu option is selected, with the special print route 'LocalPrt'. For text files, PC text files, PC jobs and VS print files, either the VSQUEUE DP utility or Queue Control may be used. Local print is also supported from within Wang Office.

Magenta Systems separately offers another package named Magenta Utilities which includes Magenta WP Functions and Text File Utilities, both of which support local printing. Magenta WP Functions allows standard Word Processing documents to be viewed, indexed and printed. Printing may be to any normal background printer, or to a local printer using the special queue 'U00'. Text File Utilities allows text files to be viewed, printed or converted to WP, and vice versa. VS print files and PC ASCII files may also be printed.

On the VS, it is not necessary to make any changes in GENEDIT to support local printing. The local printing software ignores the VS configuration and, instead, interrogates the hardware (or emulation software) to determine whether local printing is possible.

Queuing to Background Printing

Queuing to background printing is identical to normal Wang printing, with the device unit number, (of the printer to be used), simply being entered to queue the job. Queue Control shows which documents and files are waiting in each queue. On the VS, PCs used for background printing are GENEDIT'd as printers (see later chapter) and appear on the normal printer menu.

Duplex printing may be specified by using the 'Device' menu from standard WP, the 'Local Print' menu option for WP Plus or the VSQUEUE DP utility for VS DP files.

Magenta Print Utilities

This is a dedicated application used to specify the type of printer being used for each different device on the system, and to determine how each printer will behave. In Wang terminology this is similar to Peripheral Utilities, but with many added functions. Each device that is to be used with Magenta Printing must have certain defaults specified. Unless they are specified, printing will not be possible. These defaults include the printer format (serial, parallel, baud rate, etc) and the printer driver appropriate to the printer being used.

Each printer driver can have up to 100 character sets (or fonts) defined for printing from standard WP and Alliance documents or text files. Each character set may specify the pitch, style, typeface, etc, to be used during printing. By copying printer drivers, different users can have different selections of characters sets. With WP Plus, additional fonts are automatically specified as required by specific documents.

Additional character translation tables may be created, allowing characters different from those displayed on the screen to be printed (for example to make '>' on the screen print as '|', a vertical line).

Full support is provided for soft or downloaded fonts, including an option that allows the MS-DOS (PC) diskettes on which soft fonts are distributed, to be installed onto the VS or OIS directly from the PC drive. Within Magenta Print Utilities, MS-DOS File Utilities allows files to be copied between any PC drive and the VS or OIS.

Specific Printers Supported

Magenta Printing software includes a number of printer driver files for common industry standard printers.


A VS, OIS or Alliance system and printer interfaces and.or PC workstation with WLOC connection. Minimum O/S: VS: 7.13 with VS/IIS WP 4.60.22; OIS: 9.92; Alliance: 5.9. F


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