Wiki - Printer Emulators



The high costs of printer hardware can make a developer's job difficult when designing a product which has printing capabilities. Various methods exist for printing to virtual printers which avoid the need to purchase physical hardware during the research and development phases of a project as well as baseline troubleshooting of functionality.

Printer emulation is a critical part of reducing the overhead associated with a development lifecycle. Listed below are common printer hardware emulators/methods.


OS Name Pixel Comments
Windows PDFCreator ✔️ Recommended choice for Windows. Download
Windows CutePDF ✔️ Good alternative to PDFCreator
Windows PrimoPDF ✔️ Good alternative to PDFCreator
Windows Microsoft XPS Document Writer ✔️ 600 dpi only; known to degrade image quality
Windows Microsoft Print to PDF ✔️ 600 dpi only; known to degrade image quality
macOS RWTS PDFwriter ✔️ Recommended choice for MacOS. Download
macOS Lisanet PDFwriter ✔️ Requires workarounds for macOS 10.10+
Linux CUPS-PDF ✔️ Recommended choice for Linux. Download via apt/dnf/etc


OS Name Raw Comments
Windows QPCPrint ✔️ ESC/P2 Windows 7 or lower, disable UAC. Download
Windows Bematech ✔️ ESC/Bema Download (Portugese language)
Windows FILE: ✔️ Raw Configure, Inspect output using XVI32 hex editor
All Labelary ✔️ ZPL Recommended for ZPL. Visit site
All ZPL Emulator (Chrome app) ✔️ ZPL Based off Labelary. Download
Note: Increase the buffer to something large (e.g. 50000B) and use "set to host" to print.
Edit this page