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Old 05-23-2009, 10:35 AM   #1
Inchcape
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ID Card printer application


I recently installed a Linux Mint 6.0 for my neighbour who runs a small business. He's delighted with Linux and so is his secretary. There is one thing he asked me the other day which almost had me stumped. He uses a special ID card printer, to print "licenses" for his customers.
The printer is made by Evolis, the model is a "Dualys 3". It prints plastic ID cards in a standard format called "CR80". On the manufacturer's website, they are quite clear about and proud of the fact that they supply drivers for Linux. I downloaded (RPM's) converted them to .debs with alien and installed them.
Linux mint recognized the printer immediately, but then came the crunch question: Which software can my neighbour use to create his ID Cards?
The printer maker, Evolis, supply an application called "eMedia card designer" - a windows app, naturally. I've been looking around for Linux alternatives and so far found only one : glabels. It seems pretty good, but I don't know if it will work with this printer (I'll find out next monday).
Does anyone know of any other possible applications in Linux? Has anyone else had need of such an application? Has anyone used Linux to encode plastic ID cards magnetic strip? (I don't think I need this functionality, but who knows).
Thanks in advance for any information or pointers!
 
Old 05-23-2009, 10:52 AM   #2
tredegar
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I searched for this printer. An interesting piece of kit (but not cheap, at $3000, so I will not be getting one to play with).

If linux recognises it as a printer then you should be able to print to it.

I'd just try with any wordprocessor. Openoffice allows a "User defined" page size. Set it to the size of the cards. Set the margins to something like 1mm (Check the printer's minimum).

Create a 2 page "document", with a picture, and then try printing it to the card-printer. Maybe it'll "just work". If that works, it shouldn't be too difficult to set up some Oo templates, macros and whatever to make the process very straightforward.

I have no idea how to encode the magnetic strip.

Please let us know how you get on.
 
Old 05-23-2009, 08:06 PM   #3
moxieman99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inchcape View Post
The printer maker, Evolis, supply an application called "eMedia card designer" - a windows app, naturally. I've been looking around for Linux alternatives and so far found only one : glabels. It seems pretty good, but I don't know if it will work with this printer (I'll find out next monday).
-----------------
If glabels doesn't work, can they run eMedia under WINE? That might be the solution for the magnetic strip, too,
 
Old 05-24-2009, 04:48 AM   #4
Inchcape
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eMedia in Wine

Quote:
Originally Posted by moxieman99 View Post
-----------------
If glabels doesn't work, can they run eMedia under WINE? That might be the solution for the magnetic strip, too,
Oops! I forgot to mention that I tried to install eMedia in Wine (and also tried crossover office) with no success!
Thanks for for thinking of it though. I think I'll try glabels (because it also has barcode function) and Openoffice too. If they give no joy, I'll look at various graphical apps. I'll post back with the results
 
Old 06-08-2009, 04:55 AM   #5
Inchcape
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Solved (partially) ID card printing problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inchcape View Post
I recently installed a Linux Mint 6.0 for my neighbour who runs a small business. He's delighted with Linux and so is his secretary. There is one thing he asked me the other day which almost had me stumped. He uses a special ID card printer, to print "licenses" for his customers.
The printer is made by Evolis, the model is a "Dualys 3". It prints plastic ID cards in a standard format called "CR80". On the manufacturer's website, they are quite clear about and proud of the fact that they supply drivers for Linux. I downloaded (RPM's) converted them to .debs with alien and installed them.
Linux mint recognized the printer immediately, but then came the crunch question: Which software can my neighbour use to create his ID Cards?
The printer maker, Evolis, supply an application called "eMedia card designer" - a windows app, naturally. I've been looking around for Linux alternatives and so far found only one : glabels. It seems pretty good, but I don't know if it will work with this printer (I'll find out next monday).
Does anyone know of any other possible applications in Linux? Has anyone else had need of such an application? Has anyone used Linux to encode plastic ID cards magnetic strip? (I don't think I need this functionality, but who knows).
Thanks in advance for any information or pointers!
Here's the latest on this: I tried to print cards with glabels and managed to print in bright yellow, then blue, then purple, then black, then ****me pink. I contacted the printer maker and asked for their advice: driver problem, they'd send me the right one. They did, in source code along with the instructions for installation. After getting GCC and CUPS dev, I compiled the driver and installed it.

Next try with glabels - all colours, one after the other yet again. Back to Evolis.

This time, they sent me a .deb file and a howto for adding the printer under CUPS through a browser page, so http://localhost:631 - this brings up the html page where you can change printer settings or add printers. Adding was easy - the printer was now in the list.

The final stumbling block was this: the printer can uses ink ribbons of different kinds. They must be specified correctly in the configuration page. My customer swore he had a 5 colour CMYOK ribbon. After lots of weird printer effects (and about 100 ruined ID cards) I found he'd got it wrong - it was a 6 colour ribbon or YMCKOK ribbon. One click and it now prints perfectly.

So, glabels now works fine, so does kbarcode, as well as openoffice. All these will allow you to design and print a card, even with a barcode if you wish. If you want to encode the magnetic strip or a smart card, then you have to go to windows. Pity...
 
Old 06-08-2009, 10:23 AM   #6
tredegar
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Thanks for the follow-up.
Pleased you got it working, except for the magnetic strip. I think linux can handle RFID chips though, with rfdump
 
Old 07-27-2009, 12:05 PM   #7
gswallow
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Question Steps when using Open Office

Trying to get ID card printing away from Windows. Only app left before a complete conversion. Figure I can do something in OpenOffice to crate a database of the card holders. Need to get steps, though, to print a card to the Evolis Dualys 3 from OpenOffice. Setup up a form in Write and read the data from database with a merge and print I suppose would work, but what kind of setup for document size vs printer?

Driver and testing is done. Just wonder if you have steps you used with different software to print ID cards on this printer.

Thanks,

GregS <><
 
Old 07-28-2009, 01:44 AM   #8
Inchcape
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Software for ID card printing

Quote:
Originally Posted by gswallow View Post
Trying to get ID card printing away from Windows. Only app left before a complete conversion. Figure I can do something in OpenOffice to crate a database of the card holders. Need to get steps, though, to print a card to the Evolis Dualys 3 from OpenOffice. Setup up a form in Write and read the data from database with a merge and print I suppose would work, but what kind of setup for document size vs printer?

Driver and testing is done. Just wonder if you have steps you used with different software to print ID cards on this printer.

Thanks,

GregS <><
If the printer is correctly installed, it should behave like any other printer. Once I had the dualys3 correctly installed (the tech support at Evolis sent the wrong driver at first) the printer was recognized immediately.

I've still been having difficulty with duplex (both sides) card printing, but now have another new driver to test.

How I proceeded in Openoffice: <file> - <new> - <business card> then set the size to the same size as the CR80 plastic card (you have to specify measurements, then save it as a template for future use), then go to the options tab, select one card per page (I don't know if this is necessary or not) then print.

I'm no expert with Openoffice. I do see the interest in using it for that as you can use the database and mailmerge functions. Personally I found Openoffice a little unwieldy for designing the ID card. The best app I found for the design was Scribus (sophisticated, but easy to use) but I didn't find a way to print duplex, though technically it should. Then I tried glabels - great little app, very simple to design a card, but no possibility of duplex printing. Openoffice, not easy to design a card (in the 30 minutes i spent) wouldn't duplex print (driver problem, maybe) and finally I tried Abiword which seemed very (too?) rudimentary for card layout but DID duplex print with no problems.
From what I've learned about ID card design and printing, the windows-based apps sold with the machine do the following after an idiot-proof install:
- easy card design
- integral database
- duplex printing
- barcode
- chip encoding

all this with a choice of different types of printer ribbon - multicolour, monochrome, hologram, etc

IMO to take this away from Windows, Linux has to do as much or better.

I hope this helps. if I can help in any way, please let me know. If you have an app set up and working, I'll be interested
 
Old 09-02-2009, 07:24 AM   #9
gswallow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inchcape View Post
I've still been having difficulty with duplex (both sides) card printing, but now have another new driver to test.

How I proceeded in Openoffice: <file> - <new> - <business card> then set the size to the same size as the CR80 plastic card (you have to specify measurements, then save it as a template for future use), then go to the options tab, select one card per page (I don't know if this is necessary or not) then print.
I have successfully printed a card from openoffice.org and on both sides. Problem now is photos for ID on card are not standardized in size (may come from whatever photo client may send and cropped image gets squished once dropped into the card document. Guess I'll have to figure and crop a fixed size rather than let oo resize the image.

As is, thanks for your help.
 
Old 09-02-2009, 12:08 PM   #10
tredegar
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Quote:
I have successfully printed a card from openoffice.org and on both sides.
Are you using the same printer as Inchcape (the OP) ?

Take a look at the imagemagick set of image-manipulation tools.

If you have KDE3 then also look at Charles Bouveyron's kim - an elegant R-click context menu add-on to KDE for image manipulation.

kim is "just" a set of scripts that interace with KDE and are extremely easy to understand and customise to your particular needs.

If you take a look at them, they'll clearly show you how to use imagemagick's utilities to make any photo the right size / resolution before you import it into Oo. Otherwise, I confess, the multiple command-line options are a bit of a headache (but comprehensive and very useful).
 
Old 06-05-2013, 10:17 AM   #11
jpcn96
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Binary for Linux Evolis Drivers

I wonder if someone can redirect me to the binaries for the Evolis Linux Drivers, I have been trying to compile the drivers provided in the Evolis web site from scratch with no success. Debian or Ubuntu binaries are find.

Your help will be appreaciatted.

Thanks,
Juan Pablo.
 
  


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