181
bilange
5y

First time poster here. Please be nice :)

My biggest workaround is one that's being currently deployed to 40 truck drivers (trucking company here), preventing printers being out of usage while on the road. We also have to use HP ePrint to wirelessly print documents, but that's another story for another time I guess :)

CEO asked us to install wifi printers in our 40-ish trucks which has wifi on board. However he's always picking one of the cheapest options possible, so we got consumer grade printers (Laserjet 1002w). Those printers often disconnects without getting back on the truck wifi network EVER. I have to get physically in the truck, wire the printer via USB onto my laptop and reconfigure Wifi on it with the HP Windows tool. This means lots of printer downtime, which always happens when the drivers are three timezones away from our office

Then I thought: "What if I could sniff what HP sends via USB while I (re)configure the printer, and replay whats being sent later? Our trucks all have an Android tablet with a USB type-A connector with host capability, so I could write a small app that replays the config when plugged in by the user.

Three days of hacking around later, I have a working app. By chance, HP printers (or at least those models we have) uses HTTP POST via USB, so I could easily replay the request.

Edit: the end result is that truck drivers just plug the printer to their tablet, press "reconfigure" in a home made Android app, printer is reconnected to the truck and they're good to go. They don't have access to the network nor know enough to debug themselves anyways

Comments
  • 33
    Nice one!
    Welcome to the community :)
  • 29
    Workaround? It's a great solution !
  • 37
    Dude, that's pretty amazeballs. And devRant isn't Stack Overflow - we're always nice to our fellow coders! Especially when they have ideas like that!
  • 15
    Welcome to devRant! Great solution! You found a home here 😀
  • 9
    This is marvelous!

    Welcome to devRant! ^^
  • 32
    So you could say that your drivers have the ability to sort out their drivers? 😂
    Also, very nice solution 😊
  • 11
    Nice work. Maybe next you can make it run when they beep the truck horn. Welcome to the community!
  • 2
    Question for ya, I figured your using the tablets for E-Log requirements?I if so, what solution do you use, we are trying to roll that out to the trucks we have but can'treally decide which route to go
  • 9
    3 sentences in, I thought you were a perfect dev team, with a truck factor of 40!

    Truck Factor: nr of devs that needs to get hit by a truck in order to fail the project. (Ref: Venkat Subramaniam)
  • 6
    What an amazing fix for this. Epic win detected.

    Welcome to devRant! I'm pretty new too and I love it here. Great place for blowing off some steam or just having a good LOL.
  • 2
    Good solution!
  • 2
    @bcom sadly the IT Dept didn't get to choose the e-log solution, the CEO did (after all, he's the one who pays the bills)! Anyway we have to deal with a company called Isaac Instruments (Isaac.ca). Luckily they are allowing us to do whatever we want on their Android (that's where I deployed my workaround above), and are generally helpful
  • 1
    Cool man
  • 0
    great work!!!
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