LS Retail w/Zebra ZD410's

gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

Are there any other solutions for label printing other than this particular setup? We have several other applications that utilize other Zebra label printer models, yet none of them experience the flakiness and reliability issues of this setup.

Between the Zebra BrowserPrint client losing its preferences to the sporadic user approval prompts to losing connectivity for web client printing (while regular Windows printing to the unit works just fine)...it's frustrating. As someone who has occupied IT roles going back over 25 years now I know the basic troubleshooting required. So far the only fix for these issues involve 1) uninstalling Zebra BrowserPrint, 2) removing the Windows printer instance, 3) reinstalling the Windows printer instance, 4) reinstalling Zebra BrowserPrint, 5) reconfiguring Zebra BrowserPrint, 6) going through the web client approval prompts and acknowledgments.

If any web client can see a published list of local and network printers that exist, the need for the Zebra BrowserPrint middleware is maddening at best.

23 comments

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 
    edited August 2020

    Here below is an example. Zebra BrowserPrint fails to pass along the print job. But if I just pull the URL that the Print Label button is referencing in the web client I can clearly see the Zebra printer that's locally installed. And the print job succeeds. So it can't be a Chrome issue, since I can print directly in Chrome.

    Uninstalling/reinstalling/reconfiguring/reacknowledging Zebra BrowserPrint seems to be the iron-clad fix. And yes, I'm using the Zebra BrowserPrint version that's downloadable from the LS Retail page prompt.


  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Hey @gregarican ,


    If you're interested, we could always try to troubleshoot this directly with our support team if no other answers are located by other clients.


    It does sound a little like the printer might be going to sleep? We'd need to run tests to determine if there's an easier solution.

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

    Thanks for the reply! I had the user do a support session or two, and it's just sporadic. The printer definitely isn't going to sleep, since the user can print a Windows test page to the Zebra, while the Zebra BrowserPrint is the fail point. Sometimes closing down the app, letting the LS Retail web client ask if the program needs to be installed, and firing up the app resolves the issue. Other times uninstalling and reinstalling fixes the issue.

    The BrowserPrint is just another dependency and point of failure frankly. We have five other apps that print to other Zebra printers and none of them require this middleware. A web browser can print to local and mapped network printers without the middleware. 😔

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator
    edited August 2020

    I definitely noticed that there are some recurring things that have very specific tells and resolutions in my 2 years of troubleshooting, @gregarican .


    I created a basic help article for customers to help them identify the exact trouble and their resolutions.


    Often, people have some trouble with the unit when they attempt to print and it constantly asks them to re-download the application.(as mentioned above)


    1) What browser are you using? It seems silly but, in case you normally print labels while using Firefox or Google Chrome, please make sure you're using that browser at the moment you attempt a print job. We also would like to point out that Safari or Internet Explorer are not considered supported browsers and you may need to switch to the above options mentioned for it to work proper)


    2) Make sure the Browser Print App is enabled. If you're working on a Mac, on the top-right of your screen will be your app tray. If you see the zebra head at the top (which you don't in my case), make sure to launch the app. 


    ​ 


    On Windows, because it is different, the app tray is at the bottom-right of your screen, often hidden by a little " ^ " icon. Click the icon and check if the browser print zebra head icon is present. (it is in my case) If not, please launch the app.



    3) If after launching the app you still see the request to re-download the app, click the Check Again link in blue and click the Local host link. 


    ​ This will bring you to an "insecure" website. Please bypass this by clicking the ADVANCED button, then the Proceed to LocalHost link underlined at the bottom of the page. 

    ​ 


    You may get asked for permissions, if so, please click the YES button on the boxes that pop up and try again! 





    Another thing that can happen is when you're printing out labels, sometimes the Browser Print app will load up the entire queue and stop right at the end, appearing to having been completed, but not printing anything out.


    Most of the time this means that the application might be troublesome and deleting/re-downloading the app is sometimes required.



    Other times, the Print queue loads entirely, the Browser Print window closes but nothing prints. This is usually on the Printer side of things, rather than the app and powering down and back on your printer is ideal. Other times you might need to perform a factory reset on the printer to resolve this:

    • Powered OFF the printer 
    • Held the PAUSE+FEED buttons
    • Powered ON the printer while holding the PAUSE+FEED buttons
    • Keep holding those until the light goes GREEN 
    • Run a test print


    Another way to factory reset the printer is by flipping it on its head and inserting a paperclip into a little pinhole located next to an arrow going in a square formation and holding it until the printer starts making noise.


    If the printer makes no noise after 10 solid seconds, try again. If this continuously fails, consider using the button reset above.



    Hopefully all of these tidbits of knowledge will help you navigate things easier! We do understand that these are workarounds and our dev team is working on permanent solutions to this.


    Thank you for your ongoing participation on our forum and enjoy your weekend!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

    Thanks for the tips! Yes, I published something like this on our Intranet site for the operators to work through when they run into issues. In our case, it's 9 times out of 10 the one scenario you detailed.

    "Another thing that can happen is when you're printing out labels, sometimes the Browser Print app will load up the entire queue and stop right at the end, appearing to having been completed, but not printing anything out.


    Most of the time this means that the application might be troublesome and deleting/re-downloading the app is sometimes required."

    Roughly twice a week we have to close out of the ZBP app, let our (Chrome) LS Retail web session prompt us to check ZBP, restart the ZBP app, and then things work. Or else worst case is we have to reinstall the ZBP app.

    When this happens I can see the print queue is laden with the ZBP jobs that don't have the proper EOF sent or something, so they back up. And we can print okay in the same session with Chrome printing directly to the printer from a link to the label job (e.g. - https://us.merchantos.com/API/Account/{AccountId}/DisplayTemplate/ItemAsLabel/4034.html?template=ItemLabel&print=1&shopID=2&labelSize=2.20x.50). Putting the direct URL into the browser, letting the web browser send the job, and it works fine. It's just ZBP that's the issue.

    Have a great weekend as well!

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Thanks for the info!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • VTSteveVTSteve Member Posts: 4

    This is a consistent issue. Doesn't matter the browser or machine.

    We have gone so far as to put the BrowserPrint-1.2.0.exe onto our taskbar as it is reinstalled almost every 2 days.

    Please find an alternative!

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

    @VTSteve thanks for the validation, since I assumed I wasn't the only client experiencing the issue. The whole concept behind the ZBP app being required escapes me. Any LS Retail web client (be it macOS, Windows, Linux, etc.) has a printer dialog box that pops up when they try to print a form. They can select the printer to print the web form to. Same with the Zebra labels. It boggles me when I see that work just fine, in the same client session where the ZBP app has sent multiple jobs with incomplete EOF commands that are clogging up the queue.

    We have at least 3 other apps which print to various Zebra printers. None of them have this issue. Since none of them utilize this flaky ZBP middleware app.

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Hey guys,


    Your feedback is heard loud and clear, thank you for taking the time!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • VintageWineGuyVintageWineGuy Member Posts: 113 ✭

    Since it's a conversation, can we also have more modern versions of the Zebra printers on the supported list? Like the G-series? I know they work, but would be nice to have them on the support list. It is nice to be able to print 2x1 labels and 4x6 shipping labels on the same printer.

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

    @VintageWineGuy good point. If a PC or Mac is printing labels then any mapped/connected printer should work. If only Lightspeed Retail just let the web browser handle the printing and ditch the ZBP middleware piece. All the user would need to worry about is the form size matching what the client session is sending to the label printer. This would open up a lot of options.

    For example, we have large price changes affecting many hundreds of items. Using our other solution, we send the updated price tags as a batch to a large Zebra ZT-220 that holds a roll of like 1,500 labels.

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Hey guys!

    It's noted, thank you!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • TradingboTradingbo Member Posts: 36

    Hi @VanessaD


    Do you have a support feature vote going for this? We'd also like to add our names to it. We've been using OnSite for years and have never come across any problems like this until switching to retail.

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 

    You could put it here --> http://ideas.lightspeedretail.com/forums/233165-lightspeed-cloud. Although most of the ideas on there don't get considered really. Maybe just a half dozen or so actively worked in...

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Hi @Tradingbo ,


    We currently have an internal document with all of these and add to it as we get the enhancement requests.


    Luckily, if it's already in there but I'll add your name to the list of people interested!


    Thank you!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • RetroRevRetroRev Member Posts: 10

    Ive been having issues with the Zebra printers since day one. There's really no solution for it. They rely on poorly coded software and there are no other compatible printers out there that I could find at least.

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    Hi @RetroRev ,


    Thanks for you feedback, we understand that this is something that is affecting quite a few customers who have more complex needs.


    We assure that this is something we're working on.


    Thanks for helping keep us on track!

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

  • RetroRevRetroRev Member Posts: 10

    I heard nearly that same line this time last year...

  • YossarianYossarian Member Posts: 9

    FYI for those who don't know, you don't have to use Zebra Browser Print in order to print labels. You can disable it by going to Settings/Locations/Customize and uncheck "Enable Zebra Browser Print". After doing that we're now able to print labels from any PC to a shared ZD410 printer. (which support told me wasn't possible 🙄)

  • thislittlegallerythislittlegallery Member Posts: 3

    I have had consistent issues as well. I came here to hopefully find solution as I have gotten no where with the support at LS retail. I have been on numerous call & chats with support including using Team Viewer and after 2 days and many hours of that, I was told my case would be sent to the Escalation Team. Ok, I thought, now I might get some quick resolution. But alas, the Escalation Team does not work on the weekends and it's generally a minimum of 48 hours before you hear back from them but due to a high volume of cases it could be 5-7 days! I'm new to this and only became a customer in October 2020. How does LS have such great reviews for service support? (which is why I signed on with them in the first place). Reading through this thread ,dating back to August, is very disappointing.

    Although what is more disappointing is the fact that I am incapable of printing labels for new merchandise since last Thursday. Stating the obvious here: if I can't put price labels on the merch, it can't go on the sales floor and if it's not on the sales floor, I can't sell it. So...the only answer from LS support is "sorry, we'll get to it as soon as possible". How are the rest of you able to deal with this kind of service? I wish this was my only issue with LS.

    Completely frustrated and regretting my decision to buy into LS.

  • suzicurtissuzicurtis Member Posts: 1

    I'm so glad to hear of other frustrations between Lightspeed and Zebra. It is absurd the amount of problems we have had with this printer. I cannot waste any more time in the shop trying to do a simple task like print labels. I'm now shopping for a new POS system because it doesn't seem like Lightspeed is going to fix this anytime soon. Do they realize what a poor reflection it is on their software? Whenever anyone asks if I'm happy with Lightspeed, I say, "NO - because of the printing situation."

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 625 
    edited February 8

    @suzicurtis the sad part is the "fix" really isn't that elaborate. The Zebra BrowserPrint middleware is the culprit 99 times out of 100 it seems. If you print the previewed label directly from the web browser (bypassing ZBP entirely) it works fine.

    We have another platform in place for our larger organization, and can easily network a larger Zebra ZT-220's so anyone can print labels to them. Talking about cranking out 1,000 labels for vendor price changes and it's reliable. Whereas rigging the ZBP to work with a workstation-shared ZD-410 and seeing consistent availability with Retail is tenuous at best.

  • VanessaDVanessaD Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 301 moderator

    We are currently working on being able to resolve this by introducing another software to replace the existing Browser Print Software.


    The reason the certificates keep getting knocked off is because of the web browsers. The software/app itself is a privately developed app where the certificates get knocked off by the web browser every time it updates.


    This means that since Chrome does updates almost on the daily, that this is required frequently, whereas Firefox updates less frequently and is normally suggested to try and mitigate this from happening.


    We're aware of the cause and effect, which is why we're going with a different rout. I was there last year and can assure that it's something we're working to smooth out as soon as possible.

    ———


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.


    Cheers!


    Vanessa D.

    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

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