Printing Problems - Mozilla

This is a discussion on Printing Problems - Mozilla ; I'm trying to print some Wikipedia pages. The pages look great in the browser, but when I print them, they look terrible. I've tried Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Chrome. Firefox generally does the best, but some printouts are simply ...

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Thread: Printing Problems

  1. Printing Problems

    I'm trying to print some Wikipedia pages. The pages look great in the
    browser, but when I print them, they look terrible. I've tried
    Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Chrome. Firefox generally
    does the best, but some printouts are simply unacceptable. For
    instance, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbia.

    Since the pages look good in the browser, I'm guessing that Firefox
    uses different formatting logic for the screen vs. the printer. Other
    than taking screen-shots and printing them as graphics, is there
    anyway to override the printing logic and tell Firefox to print in a
    WYSIWYG mode?

    -TC

  2. Re: Printing Problems

    On Nov 17, 9:11*am, "David McRitchie" wrote:
    > "squaredancer" wrote in messagenews:BPadnVJl-aSPD7zUnZ2dnUVZ_jCdnZ2d@mozilla.org...
    > > On 17.11.2008 16:29, CET - what odd quirk of fate caused *
    > > existential.philoso...@gmail.com to generate the following:? :
    > >> I'm trying to print some Wikipedia pages. The pages look great in the
    > >> browser, but when I print them, they look terrible. I've tried
    > >> Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Chrome. Firefox generally
    > >> does the best, but some printouts are simply unacceptable. For
    > >> instance, seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbia.

    >
    > >> Since the pages look good in the browser, I'm guessing that Firefox
    > >> uses different formatting logic for the screen vs. the printer. Other
    > >> than taking screen-shots and printing them as graphics, is there
    > >> anyway to override the printing logic and tell Firefox to print in a
    > >> WYSIWYG mode?

    >
    > >> -TC

    >
    > > most web pages have some link to a printable version - as does Wiki

    >
    > > look in the left side panel.
    > > go down to toolbox,
    > > click Printable version
    > > next time - LOOK

    >
    > > reg

    >
    > I get the print version automatically in Print Preview as it does not include the
    > side wiki side panel in both 3.0.4 *and in 3.1 (Minefield).
    > At 90% would print 27 pages, looks fine in Print Preview
    > at *scale *"Shrink to fit" *(60%) would do 15 pages doesn't look good in Print Preview
    > but that doesn't mean that it would not look bad if actually printed. as that is
    > probably my screen resolution and fontsize making the font look bad.
    >
    > Would the OP *please verify that Print Preview shows the same unwanted
    > features as actually printing and what exactly is wrong. * I don't have
    > a printer here. * Unacceptable results is not very descriptive.
    >
    > --
    > HTH,
    > David McRitchie, * extensions I use are briefly documented on my site
    > Firefox Custom: *http://www.mvps.org/dmcritchie/firefox/firefox.htm


    David,

    Thanks for the reply. I'm experiencing two specific problems:

    One problem is overlapping text -- Firefox puts two different
    paragraphs in the same place, writing one over the other. I seem to be
    able to avoid this by changing the scale and/or the margins in
    arbitrary ways. As you observed, "Shrink to Fit" makes the Serbia
    article do this, but I've also seen it happen for other articles and
    other scale settings.

    The second problem is that Firefox is inserting a lot of unnecessary
    white space into some articles. Often, I'll get just one or two lines
    on a page. A good example of this problem is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kosovo.
    I haven't found any workaround for this.

    In both cases, Print Preview is showing what actually gets printed.
    You speculated that because of font size or screen resolution, Print
    Preview might be formatting the page incorrectly while the printer
    formats it correctly; in my experience, this is not happening. When I
    send to the printer, I'm getting the same formatting bugs I see in
    Print Preview.


    -TC

  3. Re: Printing Problems

    On Nov 17, 9:59*am, keith_nut...@sbcglobal.net wrote:
    > existential.philoso...@gmail.com wrote:
    > > I'm trying to print some Wikipedia pages. The pages look great in the
    > > browser, but when I print them, they look terrible. I've tried
    > > Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Chrome. Firefox generally
    > > does the best, but some printouts are simply unacceptable. For
    > > instance, seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbia.

    >
    > > Since the pages look good in the browser, I'm guessing that Firefox
    > > uses different formatting logic for the screen vs. the printer. Other
    > > than taking screen-shots and printing them as graphics, is there
    > > anyway to override the printing logic and tell Firefox to print in a
    > > WYSIWYG mode?

    >
    > > -TC

    >
    > I just printed the webpage you mentioned and had what I assume is the
    > same problem you had with the contents section.
    >
    > I routinely print browser pages from Firefox 3.04, and have not had the
    > problem with other pages. *When I closed the contents box and print your
    > webpage I got a nice looking print. I am not an expert, I would *suspect
    > there is nothing wrong with Firefox but a coding error on that specific
    > webpage with the pop open content window.


    Keith,

    You're right. When I hide the Contents section, that page prints
    correctly. Thanks. With your observation and David's comment above,
    I've found enough of a workaround to get my project done. However, I'm
    still curious about why printing is so screwy. I'm not ready to
    absolve Firefox of the blame. Content window bug or not, Firefox
    formats the page properly for the screen; why doesn't it also format
    the page properly for the printer?

    -TC

  4. Re: Printing Problems

    On Nov 18, 7:55*am, "Alex K." wrote:
    > David McRitchie wrote:
    > >
    > >> On Nov 17, 9:59 am, keith_nut *wrote:
    > >>> existential.philoso wrote:
    > >>>> I'm trying to print some Wikipedia pages. The pages look great in the
    > >>>> browser, but when I print them, they look terrible. I've tried
    > >>>> Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape, and Chrome. Firefox generally
    > >>>> does the best, but some printouts are simply unacceptable. For
    > >>>> instance, seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbia.
    > >>>> Since the pages look good in the browser, I'm guessing that Firefox
    > >>>> uses different formatting logic for the screen vs. the printer. Other
    > >>>> than taking screen-shots and printing them as graphics, is there
    > >>>> anyway to override the printing logic and tell Firefox to print in a
    > >>>> WYSIWYG mode?
    > >>> I just printed the webpage you mentioned and had what I assume is the
    > >>> same problem you had with the contents section.

    >
    > >>> I routinely print browser pages from Firefox 3.04, and have not had the
    > >>> problem with other pages. When I closed the contents box and print your
    > >>> webpage I got a nice looking print. I am not an expert, I would suspect
    > >>> there is nothing wrong with Firefox but a coding error on that specific
    > >>> webpage with the pop open content window.
    > >> Keith,

    >
    > >> You're right. When I hide the Contents section, that page prints
    > >> correctly. Thanks. With your observation and David's comment above,
    > >> I've found enough of a workaround to get my project done. However, I'm
    > >> still curious about why printing is so screwy. I'm not ready to
    > >> absolve Firefox of the blame. Content window bug or not, Firefox
    > >> formats the page properly for the screen; why doesn't it also format
    > >> the page properly for the printer?

    >
    > > When I mentioned the font would probably look okay when printed, the reason
    > > is that the screen resolution may be perhaps * 72 pixels per inch, *and for a printer
    > > about *10X *that. * *If *I use *shrink to fit *then display as use full width, *the font
    > > looks fine.

    >
    > > Compare
    > > * *http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_of_Serbia*(see Note #91)
    > > to what *it is supposed to refer to * (though appearances differ)
    > > * *http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbia
    > > also mentioned was another article
    > > *http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kosovo* * * (see Note #2)\

    >
    > > There is a difference in the *Notes *between print preview and whatyou see in
    > > the browsers and in IE print Preview. * The *Firefox *Print Preview *is expanding
    > > the links in the notes to show the URL *and that is resulting in print overlap
    > > in Firefox print preview.

    >
    > > Also *Firefox browser (3.0.4) and Print Preview are showing the *Notes in two columns * *
    > > I expect those things relate to *style sheets for *wikipedia.

    >
    > I do not have a problem with the 'Contents' section. *Print Preview &
    > printing, with the contents section either shown, or hidden, appear
    > correctly for me.
    >
    > With regard to the issue with the Notes, or rather, the 'References'
    > section, as it is labeled, those pages pull in a print specific style
    > sheet. *The print style sheet has a declaration to automatically expand
    > external URLs in the printed document.
    >
    > The specific declaration is this one, from:http://upload.wikimedia.org/skins/co...ommonPrint.css
    >
    > #content a.external.text:after, #content a.external.autonumber:after {
    > * * /* Expand URLs for printing */
    > * * content: " (" attr(href) ") ";
    >
    > So, when viewing the page normally, all you see is the link name, not
    > the URL. *For example, at Reference 12 on:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_of_Serbia
    >
    > 12. ^ "Finding birds in Serbia". League for the Ornithological Action of
    > Serbia (2005).
    >
    > But when printed, or previewed, in FF, it looks like this:
    >
    > 12. ^ "Finding birds in Serbia (http://www.ptica.org
    > * * /engl/birds/serbia.htm) ". League for the Ornithological
    > * * Action of Serbia (2005).
    >
    > You can see that the URL for the the link named "Finding birds in
    > Serbia" has been inserted, for the printed document.
    >
    > What I observed, was that the problem with URLs running over into the
    > next column, occurred with URLs that were all very long, with very few
    > 'break points', for lack of a better term.
    >
    > FF appears willing to break a long URL when printing, but only where a
    > '/', '-', or '&' occurs. *[There may well be others, but these were the
    > ones that I noticed, on this page.]
    >
    > For the 'Note 91' you referenced above, the underlying URL is:http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTE.../0,,contentMDK...
    >
    > What I see in FF, in Print Preview @ 100% is:
    >
    > 91. ^ "Upper-middle-income economies
    > (http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL
    > /DATASTATISTICS/0,,contentMDK:20421402~pagePK:64133150~piPK:641331 75
    >
    > After the '/0', there are no further '/', '&', or '-' characters in the
    > URL, so the remainder of the URL runs over, into the text of the right
    > hand column.
    >
    > Even if I select 'Shrink to Fit', there is still some degree of overlap.
    >
    > Now, why don't we see this with IE? *According to this page, the :before
    > & :after pseudo-elements are *not* supported in IE7 & earlier:http://www.quirksmode.org/css/beforeafter.html
    >
    > "Not supported by IE7 and lower.
    > IE8b1 doesn't accept images as content."
    >
    > Since they are not supported, they are (properly) ignored by IE < 8.
    > This results in the References printing as they appear in the normal
    > viewing mode, just the link names, without the URL. *I can't verify the
    > behavior in IE8 (beta), as I don't have it installed.
    >
    > So, it seems to me, that the ':' character should be recognized as a
    > potential break point, for wrapping long URLs in FF.
    >
    > Can someone running nighties confirm, using the above URL, whether the
    > problem still exists, or if it has been fixed already?
    >
    > Oh, and, yes, Reg, it even occurs when using the 'Printable version'
    > link. ;-)
    >
    > --
    > Alex K.

    Alex,

    If I understand what you're saying, the printout is formatted
    differently than the screen because Firefox uses a different style
    sheet when laying out the printed page vs. laying out the screen. You
    identified one specific difference between the style sheets (the
    display of URLs) and observed how it results in printing problems.
    From what I've heard, it sounds reasonable to suppose that the other
    printing problems I've seen (overlapping text and large gaps) are also
    due to differences between the style sheets.

    The obvious question, then, is this: Is there any way to tell Firefox
    to use the screen style sheet when laying out the printed page? I
    suspect the answer is no, but in light of this conversation, I believe
    that would be a very useful feature.

    -TC

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