There is a networked computer at my workplace that is designed for people to directly print over a wireless network. We have a system that allows us to track and log each and every document that is printed. However, the printer also allows direct connections by way of USB.

If someone were to directly print to the printer using the USB connection, what information would be stored on that printer? We use MacBooks so will it store the MacBooks name, MAC address, etc?

  • 2
    Depends on the printer. – Ramhound Dec 14 '16 at 2:25
  • Your IT department can probably answer this better. We use a cost tracking system on our printers, but its effectiveness is ONLY when the printers are printed to using the correct printer queue. If a person prints directly to the printer and not through the tracking queue we know who and what printed, but only if we go into the printer itself and collect the information, which is too much work to do regularly. – music2myear Dec 15 '16 at 0:59

Summary: Ramhound is right.

The printer is allowed to save/record/log whatever the printer wants to. Your (mac) computer likely has very few options, and quite possibly none, on controlling what the printer stores. For instance, I've heard commercial printers will save a copy of every image (storing it onto a hard drive, possibly intended as a cache to help with speed). As the printer contains some electronic/computerized technology, the possibilities are as varied as the circuitry that a company can create.

Your only chance at getting a more specific answer might be asking another question that mentions a specific type of printer (such as a specific manufacturer and a specific model number).

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