I recently posted this question on the user forum, my mistake, I know all the really smart people are over here!
I have developed a print-driver with a very special purpose - it launches an application on the machine on which it is installed - and which also has an electronic signature pad connected to it - and captures a handwritten signature and embeds that into the pdf file just printed, keeping the document in electronic form.
This means that if someone using computer A wants the person using computer B to sign a document, they just print that document to computer B's shared instance of this print driver. For this to happen, the print driver on the server computer must be used.
There is an issue of "client-side" rendering implemented by MS since sometime after windows 2000. This can be disabled (at least turned off) and I have done everything I can do to force "server-side" rendering for this print driver.
However, Reader and Acrobat simply won't honor these settings - in all cases these 2 insist on using the local copy of the driver (which must exist on the local computer too - windows now copies that driver from the server each time the server driver is updated).
ALL other applications that I've tested faithfully send the document to the server's driver (though they also "exercise" the local driver for some reason, I can see this through logging when it is activated - but I cannot see where/why the printing subsystem is making the decision to forward it on).
To recap - other applications faithfully "render" using the server's driver on the server machine, Acrobat and Reader render using the client driver on the client machine.
I am more than willing to develop a print provider, print processor, or port monitor for my print driver - if I knew enough about which one of these is best targeted for this particular problem. It was hair pulling enough to figure out how to do the driver to begin with, this time I'd really appreciate any advice about which one of these I need to tackle rather than spend days developing one realizing I should have developed the other.
Or ... if there is something I need to set in Reader/Acrobat properties OR something in the print driver itself (which is, BTW, based on MS pscript5, i.e., not monolithic) that I might need to do ?
Thanks very much for the help