Why migrate your print servers when you can also remove them?
Words by Linda van der Westen, Cirrato
Windows Server 2003 extended support ended mid July 2015. A lot of time and effort was spent on explaining why organisations would want to migrate to Windows Server 2012 R2, Microsoft Azure or Office 365. Microsoft states that “organisations can achieve concrete benefits, including improved performance, reduced maintenance requirements, and increased agility and speed of response to the business”. We would like to offer an alternative to migrating all print servers and suggest removing them instead.
Looking at the migration Microsoft proposes, the planning assistant outlines ten steps for migrating to Windows Server 2012 R2. The entire overview, which is nicely outlined in a PDF, still refers to many other resources, additional steps to take and things to consider. It is a planning process that is likely to take time, but with promising results. Still, the fact remains that each server will need to migrate, at each location, quite likely by a different person each time. That requires a lot of planning and resources.
Why not consider moving over to a single server printing solution instead? It is actually fairly simple compared to the Microsoft migration process.
Besides having one server to manage and having centralized control over printing, the choice for the Cirrato single server solution carries many more benefits. For an overview, please have a look at our list of features.
A closer look at the migration process
Standard migration to Cirrato takes five steps:
1. Prepare one server and install the Cirrato software
2. Run an inventory of printers and printer drivers
3. Upload drivers (tool provided) to the Cirrato server
4. Migrate (tool provided)
5. Remove print servers
Optional collector tool
A recently developed option for the migration process to Cirrato is the use of a tool called ‘collector’ which replaces the above mentioned step 2. This offers great value, especially for large organisations, as their print fleet of (tens of) thousands of printers is not often fully visible with continuous changes affecting the central overview. After running the collector tool on each server (no installation required), an accurate overview of all printers for each server will be presented. The overview contains all the information connected to each printer, including IP address, type, model, name, configurations, drivers, server name and comments that were added.
The overview is delivered in an Excel or XML report containing all data related to devices, configurations and drivers, derived from the inventory. It is possible to filter/sort/ check data and make changes (for example to delete unwanted devices, drivers, or configurations). An easy way to clean the environment before migration.
And then.. Remove the print servers
After migrating to Cirrato, all print servers can be removed. This instantly results in a large decrease in costs for licensing, maintenance and storage. Not to mention the reduced environmental impact. All of these benefits are within reach, without much effort – all it takes is a few steps. Not to mention the fact that life becomes a lot easier for IT with only one server that allows them to manage printing from a central location. We could tell you all about how great the impact has been for some of our customers. But we will let STRABAG, NCC, L&N and Strukton do the talking for us.
So when facing a big change involving print servers, consider simply removing them – with the Cirrato single server print management solution.
This article was originally published on the Cirrato Enterprise Print Management blog.