Features of the Authentication Client

O&K Print Watch Authentication Client is a special program module that should be installed on the computers (workstations) in your company network. It will allow you to greatly increase the usability and efficiency of O&K Print Watch. The Authentication Client is an optional solution that extends the print auditing application’s standard capabilities, making it more interactive and end-user oriented.

What are the features of the Authentication Client? First, the client allows the users of the computers with the program module installed to access detailed statistics of their printing projects. The standard, server-based version of O&K Print Watch allows only the system administrator or other person in charge of print auditing to view the total printing statistics. The Authentication Client overcomes that limitation by enabling more flexible assignment of access privileges. As a result, the authorized employees can access not the whole company’s statistics, but only a part of it, relevant to their specific business area.

Thanks to the Authentication Client, authorized users can view all kinds of printing statistics. For example, the client allows them to view statistics not only on a specific user or computer, but also on a specific project. The latter can be helpful if one computer is used by several users, or if you need to estimate the cost of a printing project without looking into the number and composition of participants of the project.

This feature is especially useful if you have publicly accessed computers with a virtually unlimited number of users. The typical use case are public organizations: libraries, Internet cafes, cultural centers, educational institutions, and so on. In addition to providing direct access to the document names, page count, and properties of printed documents, the Authentication Client allows you to keep printing costs statistics for a certain time period and estimate the total cost of specific printing projects.

Another great advantage of the Authentication Client is the so-called password-protected printing. It allows you to restrict access to printing equipment by setting a password on a printer and then telling the password only to certain employees. This feature is implemented in the Authentication Client as follows: When the user sends a document to print, it will be automatically assigned the “suspended” status after entering the print queue. The O&K Print Watch Service program module will temporarily block printing and send a request to enter the PIN code to the client computer. If the user enters the correct PIN code, the document’s status will be automatically changed to “in process”; otherwise, if the user doesn’t know the password or the Authentication Client is not installed on the client computer, the file will be removed from the print queue (and will not be printed).

The advantages of using this feature are obvious: Only the authorized users can access your printing equipment, which reduces the probability of its unintended use. Moreover, the administrator won’t have to constantly check the print queue, because the program will automatically control it at all times. However, enjoying such advantages requires some additional work to be done by the network administrator. Indeed, if you use the PIN code-based system, it is not enough to tell the password to all authorized users. You also need to install the client on each computer that can be used for printing documents.

Yet another useful feature of the Authentication Client makes the interactions of your employees with O&K Print Watch much easier, allowing the users to get automatic notifications on each printing. This feature is especially valuable if you have configured a system of quotas, such as restricting color printing or allowing each user to print only a certain number of pages within a specific time period. If the Authentication Client is not installed on the computer, the user won’t know why a document was removed from the print queue or which quota was exceeded. So each time something unexpected happens with a document sent to print, the user will have to bother the administrator. But the Authentication Client can display printing notifications directly on the user’s computer. After reading a message and learning that a specific quota had been exceeded, the user can decide what to do, without a need for the administrator’s assistance.

All in all, the Authentication Client is an extremely valuable tool that makes O&K Print Watch even more helpful and easy to use. To evaluate the effectiveness and all various features of this software, download the fully functional trial version of O&K Print Watch from the application’s official website. You can use the trial version for free for 30 days after installing it.