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How to Capture a Spool or Job File in Macintosh OS

Document ID:HO3933

Usergroup :External


Job file creation steps; Jobfiles; Spoolfiles; Capture Spoolfile; Get a copy of spool file; Obtain PRN file; Print file; Original document file; Output file not accurate; Mac OS X systems;



This article outlines the steps required to create and capture a spool or job file in a Macintosh environment. Capturing the spool file may prove useful in the analysis and troubleshooting of print errors and anomalies.



Follow the steps below:

Step Action
Open the Terminal, type cd /tmp/ and press Enter to go to the tmp folder.

Create a test file while in the tmp directory. To do so, type:

vi filename.txt (e.g., vi jobfile.txt)


Reopen the Terminal, and type the following:

cd /etc/cups and press Enter to open the cups folder
sudo vim cups-files.conf and press Enter to open cups-files.conf file 


In the cups-files.conf file, find the line #FileDevice No, remove the # symbol from the start of the line, and replace No with Yes. Then save the file and exit.


Open a web browser and type localhost:631 to open the CUPS web page.


Go to Administration tab > Server > Edit Configuration File.


In the second line, type FileDevice Yes and save changes.

Note: Enter username and password, if prompted. The Server will restart automatically. This allows the CUPS scheduler to create a job file in File Device.


Reopen a web browser and type localhost:631 to reopen the CUPS web page. Then go to Printers and select the printer (e.g.,MS610).


Click on the Administration drop down, and select Modify Printer.

Note: Enter username and password, if prompted.

The Modify menu opens. Select Internet Printing Protocol (ipp) radio button, and click Continue.

Type file:/tmp/jobfile.txt in the Connection text box, and click Continue.

Note: The printer will print to a text file which is called the job file.


Do not change any other options. Click on Modify Printer.

Note: Clicking Modify Printer will restart cups.

Go to Printers tab, click on the Maintenance drop down, and select Print Test Page. Check if a job file is created in the file:/tmp/jobfile.txt location.

Print the actual job.


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