PMP Mail Archive: RE: PMP> Top 25 minus 4 conditions/alerts proposal

PMP Mail Archive: RE: PMP> Top 25 minus 4 conditions/alerts proposal

RE: PMP> Top 25 minus 4 conditions/alerts proposal

Bob Pentecost (
Thu, 1 May 1997 16:09:22 -0600


I think we are agreeing more than disagreeing. Read on...

> ----------
From: JK Martin[]
> Sent: Thursday, May 01, 1997 10:07 AM
> To:
> Cc:
> Subject: RE: PMP> Top 25 minus 4 conditions/alerts proposal
> Bob,
> > > Now (assuming the above picture is correct), if we step back back
> > > and look at the words, in essence what we have is the interesting
> > > situation where the printer can actually *map* a warning condition
> > > to a critical condition.
> >
> > Actually, we have a situation where the printer has been told "stop
> > printing when the toner goes low because the user doesn't want to take
> > chance on running out of toner." If the printer truly mapped the toner
> > to a critical alert, it would never print with a low toner condition.
> Reading that last sentence, I'm not sure whether you're agreeing
> or disagreeing with me. If the printer "would never print with a
> low toner condition", then this definitely represents a critical
> (ie, show-stopping) situation, right? (Are we agreeing here? Or
> am I missing a point?)

I agree. If the printer says that toner low is a critical alert, then
printing is halted.

> > > As such, for this scenario, a "toner low" condition is not at all
> > > a non-critical (ie, warning) condition, but rather a very real
> > > critical condition. There is nothing in the alert code tagged for
> > > "toner low" that implies it is implicitly a non-critical alert,
> >
> > Toner low is implicitly a non-critical alert because technically, the
> > printer can still print with no degradation.
> Ah, here is where we definitely disagree. (And I believe this might
> be just what Bill Wagner was complaining about regarding the attempt
> to "standardize" critical vs. non-critical conditions.)
> See if you can agree with this series of premises and the resulting
> conclusion:
> 1. Any condition for which the printer ceases operation is described
> as being a "critical" alert. (Conversely, a condition can NOT be
> described as a "critical" alert if the condition does NOT result
> in the printer stopping operations.)

I agree.

> 2. Alert codes do NOT have any associated semantics (implied or
> otherwise) regarding the severity level of the condition associated
> with the alert code. In other words, there is absolutely no
> binding whatsoever between an "alert code" and the "severity level"
> for any given condition.

I agree.

> Therefore, if the printer ceases operation (ie, stops printing) when
> a "toner low" condition is encountered, then the alert added to the
> Alert Table must be tagged with a severity level of "critical".

If the printer stops because the toner is low and it will not continue
printing until the toner is no longer low, then the toner low alert should
be tagged as critical.

I think the above summarizes my point. A problem that causes a critical
alert must be fixed before printing can continue. I find it confusing to
think of fixing a toner low condition by putting the printer back online.

> And, following Bill Wagner's relevant comments, whether the printer
> chooses to take itself offline or not is completely up to the printer
> manufacturer; however, if it does, then it must also add a separate
> alert to the table with an alert code of "Offline" and a severity level
> of "critical".
> Do you agree with this?


> By the way, I'm not sure this statement is completely correct:
> > Toner low is implicitly a non-critical alert because technically, the
> > printer can still print with no degradation.
> Until the printer runs *out* of toner, printing *can* continue; however,
> at some point those sheets are going to start getting a bit dim, don't
> you think? ;-)

Are we talking about a world of perfect sensors and perfect toner
distribution or what we must deal with today? :-)

HP printers give the toner low alert at a point where there is still enough
toner to print with no degradation. Ideally, we would signal toner out on
the last page before a degraded page is printed, but we can't do that. If
another printer vendor wants to signal toner low when they start printing
faded pages, so be it.

Maybe we have different interpretations of what 'toner low' means. To me,
it is a warning that some number of sheets will still print normally.
Another vendor may mean that from this point forward, sheets will be
getting dim. For this second case, I can see posting the toner low alert as
critical (actually, I think HP would call it 'toner out', but we can't
detect that condition) but I'll let the decision for critical/non-critical
be left up to the printer vendor. If a printer wants to allow printing
faded images even when they know they are faded, that's up to the vendor
(they can allow printing when the fuser is not working too, I don't really
mind :-).

> > > If this is indeed true, then we don't have to worry about muddying up
> > > the Top 25 Conditions table with a new situation in which a
> > > alert is treated in some way as a critical alert.
> >
> > We aren't muddying up the table. We are just explaining a case where a
> > non-critical condition can cause a secondary critical condition. When
> > critical condition is fixed (the printer is put online), the original
> > non-critical condition (toner low) remains.
> Sure, I can follow your drift here. However, after reading Gail Songer's
> just-posted message on this thread, I think I must disagree with some of
> the directions we set during the telecon regarding the usage of the
> "Offline" alert.
> Please read my response to Gail's message (coming out Real Soon Now).

I'm anxiously waiting!

> > > Basic premise for everyone to agree upon (and maybe a useful bit of
> > > clarifying text for the new Printer MIB draft):
> > >
> > > The printer (and only the printer) decides which alert codes are
> > > critical versus non-critical.
> >
> > I can agree to the above.
> Great. Does anyone else out there in PMP-land disagree with this
> > > Does everyone agree with this? If so, then (following Bob's text)
> > > the user "continues" the printer (ie, acknowledges the warning
> > > then shouldn't the printer remove *both* the Offline and critical
> > > (describing the toner low condition), and add a new non-critical
> > > to say that the condition still remains (but is no longer critical)?
> >
> > If the printer does this, then it appears as if the toner low condition
> > fixed and then occurred again, when in reality the toner situation
> > changed. Also, this causes the management application to handle yet
> > alert (three instead of two).
> Yes, I'll admit I fully see your point. And Gail's message seems quite
> related to this line of thinking, too.
> I'll address this in the reply to Gail's message.
> ...jay
> PS: We're really coming down the wire on nailing down the Printer MIB,
> and this issue is definitely part of that effort. Other PMP folks
> are strongly encouraged to voice their opinions to the list so that
> we can quickly come to consensus. It makes no difference to me if
> you agree or disagree with my statements, but rather that you state
> what you think is correct...and quickly, please.
> PPS: Now, about not caring whether you disagree with me... ;-)

Bob Pentecost