Sam Fox School students must install printer drivers to use PaperCut to print and pay for printing. You must add funds to your account before printing from your own or lab computer.

The Sam Fox School “PaperCut” printing system is different from “WashU Print” printing system, even thought it is the same software. All students taking classes at Sam Fox School must go to this link to add funds to your PaperCut account.

PaperCut will be added to your laptop computer when you install the printer drivers. The directions vary based on which operating system (OS) you have (Mac or Windows). Follow the appropriate link below for your OS, download the entire folder onto your desktop, and follow the steps.

Printer Installation

Mac

All returning students must delete  Sam Fox printers before running the installers.

Step 1 – Download the Print Drivers from this link.
Download the entire folder called “Sam Fox Printing – Apple” to your desktop.

Step 2 – Install the Print Drivers
Unzip “Sam Fox Printing – Apple.zip.” Then open the folder “Sam Fox Printing – Apple/samfox student printers” and double click installation packages 1-5 in that sequence. Note the following details for each package:

  • Package 1: For package #1, select “Install Printer Driver Only” at the bottom of the last window.
  • Package 2: If you get the an error message “can’t be opened because it is from an unidentified developer” then hold down “control” and click once on the file, then select “open with” “Installer.app.”
  • Package 3: If you get the an error message “can’t be opened because it is from an unidentified developer” then hold down “control” and click once on the file, then select “open with” “Installer.app.”
  • Package 4: For package #4 hit continue if prompted to select a printer.
  • Package 5: If you get the an error message “can’t be opened because it is from an unidentified developer” then hold down “control” and click once on the file, then select “open with” “Installer.app.”

Step 3 – Launch PaperCut
Once the installation is complete, go to your Applications folder in Finder and look for the “PCClient.app” application (PaperCut). Drag this to your dock. You will not be able to print files until you launch PaperCut. To print, open PaperCut and log in with your WUSTL ID and password.

Windows

All returning students must delete  Sam Fox printers before running the installers.

Step 1 – Download the Print Drivers from this link.
Download the entire folder called “Sam Fox Printing – Windows” to your desktop.

Step 2 – Install the Print Drivers
Follow the instructions in the file called “00 Adding printers.rtf,” located in the folder now on your desktop.

Once you have followed the installation procedures, check to make sure you have funds on your PaperCut account. If you are new to the school, you will need to add funds.

To print, select a printing device from the list in your print window. The naming convention for all Sam Fox School printers uses the name of the building, level, and printer number. For example, steinbergf02n01 is located in Steinberg Hall, 2nd Floor, and is printer number 01. As long as you know where you are, you should be able to choose the printer closest to you by the name of the printer.

Posted at each printer and plotter is an info sheet listing printing prices. Our cost for printing is in line with the rest of the Danforth campus and covers the cost of providing printing services to you. You can also see print pricing by logging in to your PaperCut account and clicking on the “Rates” tab.

If you need a printing refund, please follow the instructions at this link.

Using Computer Labs to Print

Printers and PaperCut are added to all lab computers by default. When you hit “print,” you will be prompted to log in to your PaperCut account with your WUSTL ID and password. Make sure that you add money to your PaperCut account by going to this link before you print.

Best Practices

Plotting from PDF files

Sam Fox School no longer supports plotting from PDF files. Adobe has made changes to their suite of applications which results in inconsistent and unreliable output when plotting from PDF files. We discovered this issue in the fall of 2018 and ever since have discontinued support for plotting from PDF files. What this means is that if you do chose to plot from a PDF and the printout is not what you expected it to be, you will not be eligible for a refund.

Adobe files intended for plotting should be printed from the original program they were created in, this includes InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop. Do not export to PDF from these applications with the intent of printing those exported files. PDF formatted files are intended for sending samples over various means for the receiver to review. They were never intended for large format plotting. 

Printing from PDF files to page printers (Canon and Xerox) throughout Sam Fox School is supported. 

Allow enough time

  • Plan for 30 minutes if you are plotting large prints
  • It may sound like a lot of time, but not if 10 other people are also plotting large files at the same time.Or, there might be five people ahead of you in the queue. The paper roll may need to be changed or toner may run out and need to be replaced.
  • Allowing 30 minutes per plot gives you a buffer to get your files plotted and hung up in time for reviews.
  • For studios with access to one printer, you may also consider using a printer in another building. And during finals, please remember that many other people are printing at the same time.

Flatten all the layers

  • Flattening eliminates the possibility that a layer will suddenly show up in a different level than you thought, based on the monitor view.
  • This also renders any 3-dimensional elements to 2 dimensions so you won’t have errant blocks or lines going across your plot.
  • Remember: the plotter can see the “Z” axis and will try to do something with it.

Embed all elements into your file

  • Yes, the file size will get big … maybe really big. When elements like images and graphics aren’t embedded, the file size will appear to be smaller than it is.
  • What happens when elements aren’t embedded, is that the plotter has to go and find all those linked elements, download them, decompress them, and insert them into the referenced location before it can print.
  • If the plotter can’t follow the link to the element or if the process takes too long and times out (maybe something happened while downloading the element), it will produce unreliable results.
  • A blank spot where a linked element is supposed to be, a highly pixilated element where there was a nice hi-res element (because the plotter couldn’t find the linked file and tried to use the thumbnail you had in its spot), or the file may not print at all.

Test for color correctness

  • IT runs internal calibrations on the plotters/printers. This helps keep them printing consistently, but that doesn’t mean they will be anywhere near matching the colors you see on your monitor screen.
  • The only way we could begin to ensure that kind of match would be to calibrate one computer to each monitor and you would only be able to print to that plotter/printer from that one computer. You can imagine the lines and stress that scenario would produce.
  • If it’s critical for the colors to come out a specific way, do a test print and adjust the color settings on your file (and then save them with the file) until they are where you want them.

Learn about color printing

For a reference to color refer to this quick guide.

Color management is both art and science. Monitors, printers, ink, paper, and even the temperature in the room can impact how color hue, value, and saturation appear on the paper. We encourage you to seek further knowledge when managing color, files, printer settings, and paper types. Printers throughout the Sam Fox School are not the same, nor are the colors calibrated to any one computer in the labs.

We recommend you always print a sample and adjust your file in the software to achieve the desired look.

For an in-depth tutorial about color, see InDesign: Color Management.

Get paper pre-approval

  • Get your paper checked. Before you can use your own paper on a SFS printer, it must be pre-approved by someone in IT. 
  • If you decide to bypass this step and something happens to the plotter/printer as a result of using your own paper, you will be charged for repairs … not to mention the inconvenience it could cause fellow students.
  • If you already have paper, bring the packaging (or take a picture of the packaging) and tell IT which device you want to print on. We’ll make an instant determination for you.
  • Better yet, before you spend money on paper that isn’t right for our plotters/printers, get approval from IT.

Size the print correctly

  • In some software programs, you may have to set up to three places to get your plot to print the size you want. If you fail to do so, you may be paying for blank paper or the file will not print at all.
  • See the monitor if you’re not sure if you set everything up correctly. After everything is set correctly, go back and double check all of the settings again.
  • Trust me – it’s worth it! The setting varies from program to program but, it’s worth your time to make sure you’ve got it right.