How To: Add new PostScript Printer Description (*.ppd) files


When printing with PostScript to a PostScript-enabled printer, a PostScript Printer Description or PPD file can be specified as a part of the print job. However, if the PPD file for the printer is not available in ArcMap or ArcInfo, it needs to be added.


  1. Locate the correct PPD file for the printer either from the driver intallation disk(s) or by downloading it from the printer manufacturer's Web site.
  2. Open the PPD file in a text editor, such as Microsoft Word or Wordpad, and note the "*ModelName: ...", which is usually in the first 20 lines of the file.

    For example, in the PPD file the HP DesignJet 1055CM is listed as:

    *ModelName: "HP DesignJet 1055CM PS3"

  3. Copy the PPD file into <arcinfo_workstation_install_location>\plotters\adobe_ppd.
  4. Open <arcinfo_workstation_install_location>\plotters\adobe_ppd\devicenames.map in a text editor such as Microsoft Word or Wordpad.
  5. Add the PPD file name, model name, and manufacturer following the example of the devicenames list.

    For example, the HP DesignJet 1055CM is listed in devicenames.map as:

    hp1055c1.ppd 'HP DesignJet 1055CM PS3' 'HP'

    Use tabs to separate the text columns.

    Restart ArcMap or ArcInfo Print and use PostScript and notice the newly added PPD file.

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