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CTS Scope of Support - Printers

Every department on campus has a network printer for their staff to use for printing. Many of these network printers are used for scanning and faxing as well.

Still, many departments continue to purchase desktop printers. Oftentimes, departments purchase additional printers that are not under State contract and without consulting CTS. These are often “inexpensive” inkjet printers that cost less than $100.  However, manufacturer and model-specific ink is required - and that is how manufacturers are able to make money.  The printers themselves are sold at a loss - but big profits are made on ink cartridge sales - which continue indefinitely.  Desktop inkjet printers are actually one of the most expensive ways to print a document with per-page cost of $0.50 or more.  Units purchasing desktop printers have to procure and manage their own stock of ink cartridges - and every unit that does this probably has a cabinet full of several hundred to several thousand dollars worth of unopened old cartridges that can no longer be used. CTS cannot support an infinite variety of desktop printers all over campus, and we cannot continue to manage, fix, and service them.

  1. CTS strongly recommends that units use their already existing network printer purchased for their department/division.
  2. Units looking to purchase a desktop printer should consult CTS before purchasing one.  CTS can recommend a printer that will suit the user’s needs from the list of current desktop printer models we support.  CTS is not equipped to troubleshoot and fix the random assortment of non-supported models that have cropped up all over campus.  Also, a desktop printer in need of service (5 years or older), is outside of our scope of support.  CTS will determine the age of the desktop printer from the serial number.  In these cases, we will recommend using the existing network printer or recommend a replacement from a list of current desktop printer models we support.
  3. If a unit purchases a desktop printer, CTS will connect it directly to one computer.  As such, only 1 person will have the ability to print to it. 
  4. CTS absolutely does not set up local/desktop printers as network printers for multiple users.  Instead, we encourage users to print to their existing departmental printer.  (If you are unable to print to your departmental printer, please contact CTS at x6465.)

Did you know? Desktop printers are not intended for an office environment, but rather are intended for home or home office use.  These devices fail comparatively often, and are not designed to be serviced/repaired.  Quite to the contrary, desktop printers are designed with “Planned Obsolescence” in mind.   Frequently, your best option is to replace the unit.  But that’s not all!  The manufacturer constantly changes the cartridge design, forcing you to throw out all of your in-stock ink and stock a new type of ink.