Cloud Print Comparisons
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The following information can be used to compare CirrusPrint to home-grown or manual solutions, as well as other cloud print products.
These generally involve either a VPN or a collection of tunnel and router configurations that allow a cloud ERP application to open direct connections to network printers at a remote location. Managing a collection of tunnels and routing configurations is time consuming and prone to error. A VPN is the most comprehensive solution, as it provides security and avoids router configuration for port forwarding. However, VPN's are costly to maintain, and there is no compression of print data. A VPN is also only as secure as the most vulnerable end point, be it a laptop or mobile device, since anyone who has gained VPN access via such a device is, by the very nature of VPN, considered an insider by the network.
CirrusPrint printers are configured in a single interface, connections are secure and conducted on a client-to-server model to avoid routing and firewall issues. A single connection supports all the printers in a location. In addition, data is compressed, not just with industry standard compression, but also with techniques that avoid sending redundant data.
Commerical Cloud Print Applications
There are a number of cloud printing products on the market, with varying capabilities. Some are printer-neutral, while others are vendor-specific so that you must use one vendor's printers or establish accounts with many vendors. Some require new printers with specific capabilities. Some are oriented to providing anonymous users the ability to print to a printer near them, rather than providing known users access to printers they aren't close to. Most route print jobs through vendor-run data centers. All are focused strictly on printing.
CirrusPrint has fast throughput and low bandwidth requirements. CirrusPrint uses more than just industry standard compression; more specifically, it uses a patented compression technique, looking for redundant objects in all documents and only sending them once, in addition to using standard compression. Other products use standard compression techniques, or no compression at all.
CirrusPrint has very flexible methods for receiving data:
CirrusPrint email support gives you more control than products that require a vendor-supplied email address. You can email to CirrusPrint and have it send the attachments to any configured printer, file, command line, or user. Rather than relying on an obscure address, you can configure extensive spam protection to protect your devices. You can have an email address dedicated to a printer, or you can have an address that looks for device information in the content, enabling a generic email account to receive email for any number of remote devices.
CirrusPrint has very flexible methods of output, rather than being exclusively for printing:
Some print jobs require specific control over printer features, such as duplexing or tray selection. They may rely on precise scaling or positioning of data. A raw print stream that contains these features can't be converted to another format, or it will lose those features. CirrusPrint recognizes these types of print jobs and will pass them straight to the printer without conversion. Other cloud print solutions rely on conversions, or force input to be in PDF or image format.
In overview, CirrusPrint provides more flexibility and functionality, is vendor neutral regarding your printers, and allows you to maintain control over your print data from end to end. Rather than just printing, its focus is on quickly getting documents to a printer, place, program, or person.