Posted by: kurtsh | January 20, 2011

HOWTO: Print web pages to a portable file in an emergency on Windows 7

Have you ever been on the road and needed to print something to a file on a USB flash drive so that you can move it & print it on another computer?

Here’s the situation I ran into while in Vegas staying at the Mandalay Bay Hotel:

imagePROBLEM: 

  • I bought a $50 certificate from Restaurant.com.  Restaurant.com sells gift certificates to restaurants at huge discounts – in my case, I got the cert for only $4. The certificate is presented on a web page on Restaurant.com and needs to be printed on paper and given to the waiter at the restaurant.
  • The issue I don’t have a printer in my room, and I need to get this “web page” to a computer that does have a printer on it.  And the computer will be a generic Windows PC.

imageSOLUTION:

  1. Print the document using the built in Fax printer.  The Fax Setup dialog box will appear.
  2. Select “Connect to a fax server on my network”.  A dialog box will appear asking you to “Type the fax server location.”
  3. Press CANCEL.  A dialog box will appear saying, “To send a fax, you need to connect to a fax modem or…”
  4. Click OK to get past this dialog box.  A “New Fax” will appear with an attachment in it.  This attachment is your print out printed in a low resolution in the fax TIFF format.
  5. Click on the .TIF file under “Attach:” and drag it on to your desktop or your Flash drive.  This is the printed file that you will transport to the computer that is print-capable.

At this point, you should now have a small sub-100kb TIFF fax-format file on your USB flash drive.  This is the print out that you need in a graphics file that is readable by any Windows or Mac computer without the need to install a ‘reader’ program like Adobe Acrobat.  This makes is easy to print the files at places where downloading and installing software like an Acrobat Reader is a difficult task.

And best of all – this is free!


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