EWS Labs, Printing, EWS Printing

This page describes many of our EWS printing policies

EWS printing uses Illini Cash, the campus-wide reloadable balance system that is attached to your I-Card. You may purchase Illini Cash from the PaperCut printing system at https://papercut.ics.illinois.edu. Illini Cash can be used within all computer labs across campus that participate in the Illini Cash system; for example, Engineering EWS labs and Housing/Technology Services ICS labs.

Engineering IT strives to provide reliable and error-free printing services. However, we realize that some printing problems are unavoidable. Engineering IT will refund print jobs in cases where the job did not print correctly due to our error; for example, streaks due to low toner or printers that are out of paper. Engineering IT will not refund print jobs due to user error; for example, printing the wrong document , printing to the incorrect printer , or garbled output from printing a .pdf file in the browser.

Requesting a Refund

To allow us to investigate and process refunds in a timely manner, all refunds must be requested within 48 hours of the failed print job. To request a refund, please follow the steps below:
  1. Log into PaperCut at https://papercut.ics.illinois.edu.
  2. Select "Recent Print Jobs" from the left-hand menu.
  3. Locate the print job you would like to request a refund for, and click the "request refund" button under the "status" column.
  4. Leave a detailed description of your refund request in the "reason for request" box. Please be specific about the problem you encountered. 
  5. Click "send." You will receive an e-mail when your refund request has been processed by Engineering IT, which may take up to 2 business days. 

Best Practices

  • Check with an Engineering IT Help Desk for help if you have any confusion before you print, including information about which printers work better for certain types of jobs.
  • Preview your document in the program you are using to print, if possible.
  • Make sure you watch for and retrieve your job promptly to avoid it being accidentally removed by another person.

Printing PDF Documents

One of the most common printing problems are errors when printing PDF documents. Here are a few helpful guidelines for printing PDF files.
  • Linux: never print a PDF from the command line. Open it in acroread and then print from within the program.
  • Windows: if the PDF is being viewed within a web browser, do not print from the browser. First, save the PDF to your home directory. Then, open the PDF in Acrobat. Finally, select print from with Acrobat to send the file to the print queue. 

Print Commands on Linux

The following print commands provide users with ways to send print jobs from the command line and manipulate print jobs to help conserve paper and print quotas. For further explanations of the print commands discussed, type man and the command following it at a command prompt to get a more detailed explanation on how each command functions.

Never print a PDF file from the command line. Open it in acroread and print from there.


To send a text (.txt) or PostScript (.ps) file to a printer from a Linux workstation, enter the following command:
lpr -P printer_name file_name
To override the default double sided printing option:
lpr -o sides=one-sided file_name
For examples, see: Unix Command Guide.


Users often need to print multiple pages on one sheet of paper due to the large amount of pages that needs to be printed. To facilitate the printing of multiple pages on one page, EWS offers a utility called 'mpage' on the Linux workstations. The usage of mpage is as follows:
mpage -# -P printer_name file_name
The above '#' represents the number of pages that will be put on one sheet of paper (# can be 2, 4, and so on). The use of mpage shrinks down the size of the font that appears on a regular page by a certain factor. For example, if a user chooses 2 as the #, the output will result in splitting the paper into two parts (as 2 pages are now printed on 1 sheet), and the size of the font printed will be reduced by a factor of 2.

Duplex Printing

Most EWS printers are capable of double-sided printing. Double-sided print jobs will only be charged for the amount of physical pages printed, not per-side.

Laptop Printing

For step-by-step instructions on connecting to an EWS printer from your laptop, please see EWS Labs, Printing, Printing to an EWS printer with your own computer.

Keywords:Printing Linux Refunds Color   Doc ID:84211
Owner:Gina D.Group:University of Illinois Engineering IT
Created:2018-07-23 10:34 CDTUpdated:2020-05-19 10:26 CDT
Sites:University of Illinois Engineering IT
Feedback:  0   0