News | August 13, 1998

Printer Management Software Streamlines Workflow

Markem Corporation (Keene, NH) has introduced new software that will allow packagers the ability to manage all phases of their coding and labeling from a single desktop computer.

The software, named CimControl, networks a central PC to as many as 31 individual coders and labeling systems on the factory floor, creating a streamlined, cost-efficient workflow. An entire range of proprietary coding and labeling systems, as well as a wide variety of benchtop printers, can be linked.

By storing information within the memory of the PC, thousands of labels and codes can be easily retrieved from any point in the network. With a few clicks of the mouse, a production manager can choose the data to be printed by any networked device. On the factory floor, printers can share "as needed" access to a common set of product codes. This centralized information management minimizes the downtime normally necessary to select and maintain codes on a busy packaging line, and reduces the risk of incorrect data.

In addition, CimControl provides a set of data that enables the packager to see at a glance how each line is performing, to analyze past performance, and to troubleshoot potential problems. This information can then be archived and exported to other data management programs. For example, a production manager is able to see a graphical view of a plant's coding system, and to learn:

  • the operating status of each device, the product code it is printing

  • total units produced, total units per shift line, and other information, based on label count

  • the number of parts accepted and rejected, based upon verification of bar code labels

The software integrates easily with Markem's thermal transfer coder, bar code label printer/applicator, and the family of small character hot melt ink jet coders. Standard RS485 communications ports are available with the coders for networking with the software.

Additional Features:

  • Fully configurable by the user - no specialist knowledge required

  • Intuitive setup

  • Is capable of adding several types of desktop printers - Sato, Zebra, or TEC printers (requires a CimLink terminal )

  • Data can be logged to hard drive files in delimited ASCII form

  • User can select which data to be logged from among many fields

  • Information can be exported to other data management programs

Markem Corporation provides in-plant printing systems, supplies and services for product marking and decorating in industries including food packaging and pharmaceuticals.

For more information contact Markem Corporation, 150 Congress St., P.O. Box 2100, Keene, NH 03431. Tel: 800-421-9698; Fax: 732-417-5624.