(19)
(11)EP 2 687 911 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
09.09.2020 Bulletin 2020/37

(21)Application number: 13174748.7

(22)Date of filing:  02.07.2013
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
G03G 15/00(2006.01)

(54)

Printing apparatus and method for controlling the same

Druckvorrichtung und Verfahren zur Steuerung davon

Appareil d'impression et procédé de commande correspondant


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 17.07.2012 JP 2012158335
22.02.2013 JP 2013032893

(43)Date of publication of application:
22.01.2014 Bulletin 2014/04

(73)Proprietor: CANON KABUSHIKI KAISHA
Ohta-ku Tokyo 146-8501 (JP)

(72)Inventors:
  • Kashiwagi, Masaki
    Ohta-ku Tokyo (JP)
  • Sugahara, Tomoki
    Ohta-ku Tokyo (JP)

(74)Representative: Williamson, Brian 
Canon Europe Limited European Patent Department 3 The Square Stockley Park
Uxbridge, Middlesex UB11 1ET
Uxbridge, Middlesex UB11 1ET (GB)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A2- 0 945 779
US-A1- 2010 172 663
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION


    Field of the Invention



    [0001] The present invention relates to a printing apparatus and a method for controlling the printing apparatus.

    Description of the Related Art



    [0002] Conventional printing apparatuses are capable of binding a plurality of sheets by using a stapler finisher. Although many stapler finishers have two or more physical staplable positions, some stapler finishers have only one physical staplable position to reduce cost. Japanese Patent Application Laid-Open No. 2005-88375 discusses a technique for controlling a stapler finisher having only one staplable position. Specifically, the technique uses forward printing (printing from the first page in ascending order of page number) and reverse printing (printing from the last page in descending order of page number) in different ways to increase the number of staplable positions.

    [0003] With a stapler finisher having only one staplable position, the sheet discharge surface needs to be changed depending on a stapling position specification. For example, with a printing apparatus which discharges sheets face-down and performs stapling in the case of one-sided forward printing, it is necessary, in the case of one-sided reverse printing, to discharge sheets face-up by reversing each sheet and perform stapling. When a sheet is reversed, the curvature of the conveyance path and the influence of rollers may crease or break the sheet depending on the sheet type.

    [0004] Depending on the sheet type, paper jam may occur, thus causing a user inconvenience.

    [0005] US2010/172663 discloses a printing apparatus as claimed in the pre-characterizing portion of claim 1 herein.

    [0006] EP0 945 779 discloses methods and apparatus for selecting staple positions for printed documents are disclosed. A system and method for printing documents is disclosed which provide a user with extended staple position options. A user of a printer may specify where he wishes staples to be put into his document. The user is provided with a view of a sheet of paper on his computer screen, and can select with his mouse where he wants the staples to be put. By knowing the paper size, feed orientation and image orientation, the printer driver can then map the user's selected staple positions to the physical capabilities of the printer. The printer driver instructs the printer controller of the stapling position for the job, and how much rotation (if any) the controller should apply to the image before printing

    SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION



    [0007] According to a first aspect of the present invention, there is provided a printing apparatus as specified in claims 1 to 7. According to a second aspect of the present invention, there is provided a control method as specified in claims 8 and 9. According to a third aspect of the present invention, there is provided a program as specified in claims 10 and 12. According to a fourth aspect of the present invention, there is provided a non-transitory computer-readable storage medium as specified in claims 11 and 13.

    [0008] Further features of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of embodiments with reference to the attached drawings.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0009] 

    Fig. 1 illustrates an example printing system employing a printing apparatus.

    Fig. 2 is a block diagram illustrating a detailed configuration of a control apparatus illustrated in Fig. 1.

    Fig. 3 is a cross sectional view illustrating a configuration of a printing apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    Fig. 4 is a cross sectional view illustrating a configuration of the printing apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    Fig. 5 is a cross sectional view illustrating a configuration of the printing apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention.

    Fig. 6 illustrates a relation between a stapling position specification and sheet conveyance control of the printing apparatus.

    Fig. 7 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus.

    Fig. 8 illustrates an example user interface (UI) screen of the printing apparatus.

    Fig. 9, which is composed of Figs. 9A and 9B, is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus.

    Figs. 10A and 10B illustrate example UI screens of the printing apparatus.

    Fig. 11 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus.

    Fig. 12 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus.

    Fig. 13 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus.

    Fig. 14 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus.

    Fig. 15 illustrates an example UI screen of the printing apparatus.


    DESCRIPTION OF THE EMBODIMENTS



    [0010] Various embodiments, features, and aspects of the invention will be described in detail below with reference to the drawings. Each of the embodiments of the present invention described below can be implemented solely or as a combination of a plurality of the embodiments or features thereof where necessary or where the combination of elements or features from individual embodiments in a single embodiment is beneficial.

    [0011] Fig. 1 illustrates an example printing system employing a printing apparatus according to an embodiment of the present invention. In this example system, a controller unit (control apparatus) 300 is communicably connected with host computers (PCs) 501 and 502 via a local area network (LAN) 500.

    [0012] Referring to Fig. 1, the controller unit 300 of a printing apparatus 400 is connected to the host computers 501 and 502 via the LAN 500, such as Ethernet. The LAN 500 may be a wireless LAN.

    [0013] The printing apparatus 400 include s reader unit 200 for reading image data, and a printing unit 100 for outputting the image data. The printing apparatus 400 further includes an operation unit 150 provided with a keyboard for inputting and outputting image data, and a liquid crystal panel for displaying and setting image data and various functions.

    [0014] The controller unit 300 totally controls each of these components.

    [0015] The reader unit 200 includes a document feed unit 250 for conveying a document, and a scanner unit 210 for optically reading a document image and converting it into image data as an electrical signal. A printing unit 100 includes a printer unit 110 including a sheet cassette for storing sheets (also referred to as paper, printing sheets, and recording sheets) and a unit for transferring and fixing an image generated based on image data, and a finishing unit 401 for applying sorting processing and stapling processing to sheets with the image printed thereon.

    [0016] The controller unit 300 controls the reader unit 200 to read an image of a document, and controls the printing unit 100 to output image data on a sheet. The controller unit 300 further converts the image read from the reader unit 200 into code data, and performs a scanner job for transmitting the code data to the host computers 501 and 502 via the LAN 500. The controller unit 300 further converts code data received from the host computers 501 and 502 via the LAN 500 into image data, and executes a print job for outputting the code data to the printing unit 100.

    [0017] Fig. 2 is a block diagram illustrating a detailed configuration of the control apparatus (controller unit) 300 illustrated in Fig. 1.

    [0018] Referring to Fig. 2, the controller unit 300 includes a central processing unit (CPU) 311, a random access memory (RAM) 312, a read-only memory (ROM) 313, a hard disk drive (HDD) 160, a control unit interface (I/F) 316, a network interface card (NIC) 320, a modulator/demodulator (modem) 321, and an image bus I/F 315. The controller unit 300 further includes a raster image processor (RIP) 323, an image compression unit 324, a device I/F 325, and an image processing unit 126.

    [0019] The CPU 311 reads a program stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the program to implement the functions described below.

    [0020] The RAM 312 functions as a working area for the CPU 311. The RAM 312 also serves as an image memory for temporarily storing image data.

    [0021] The ROM 313 stores various types of programs to be read by the CPU 311. The HDD 160 stores system software and image data. The operation unit I/F 316 functions as an interface unit with the operation unit 150, and outputs to the operation unit 150 image data to be displayed on the operation unit 150. The operation unit I/F 316 plays a role of transferring user-input information from the operation unit 150 to the CPU 311.

    [0022] The network interface card (NIC) 320 is connected to the LAN 500 to input and output image data and apparatus information via the LAN 500. The modem 321 is connected to a public line 550 to input and output image data via the public line 550.

    [0023] The above-described devices are disposed on a system bus 317. The image bus I/F 315 is a bus bridge for connecting between the system bus 317 and the image bus 318 which transmits image data at high speed. The image bus 318 is configured with the product configuration identification (PCI) bus or Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)1394. The raster image processor (RIP) 323 rasterizes a page description language (PDL) code into a bitmap image. The image compression unit 324 compresses image data. For example, the image compression unit 324 compresses multivalued image data with Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) and binary image data with Joint Bi-level Image Experts Group (JBIG), Modified READ (MMR), and Modified Huffman (MH).

    [0024] The device I/F unit 325 connects the reader unit 200 (image input apparatus), the printing unit 100 (image output apparatus), and the controller unit 300. The image processing unit 326 corrects, processes, and edits image data.

    [0025] The printer unit 110 will be described in detail below with reference to Figs. 3 and 4. Figs. 3 and 4 are cross sectional views illustrating a configuration of the printing apparatus 400 according to the present embodiment. Fig. 4 illustrates the finishing unit 401 provided at the sheet discharge port illustrated in Fig. 3. The finishing unit 401 is configured to perform stapling processing at a predetermined position of a sheet.

    [0026] Referring to Fig. 3, the printing unit 100 includes four image forming units : an image formation unit 1Y for forming a yellow image, an image formation unit 1M for forming a magenta image, an image formation unit 1C for forming a cyan image, and an image formation unit 1Bk for forming a black image. The four image forming units 1Y, 1M, and 1C and 1Bk are disposed in a row at fixed intervals.

    [0027] The image formation unit 1Y, 1M, and 1C and 1Bk respectively include photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d (image bearing members) having a drum shape.

    [0028] Primary charging devices 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d, developing devices 4a, 4b, 4c, and 4d, transfer rollers 5a, 5b, 5c, and 5d (transfer units), and drum cleaning devices 6a, 6b, 6c, and 6d are disposed around the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c and 2d, respectively.

    [0029] A laser exposure device 7 is disposed below positions between the primary charging devices 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d and the developing devices 4a 4b 4c, and 4d, respectively.

    [0030] The developing devices 4a, 4b, 4c, and 4d store recording agents, such as yellow toner, cyan toner, magenta toner, and black toner, respectively.

    [0031] Each of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d is a negatively charged organic photoconductor (OPC) photosensitive member composed of an aluminum base and a photosensitive layer formed thereon. The photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d are rotated in the clockwise direction at a predetermined process speed by a driving apparatus (not illustrated).

    [0032] The primary charging devices 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d (primary charging units) uniformly charges the surfaces of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c and 2d, respectively, to a predetermined negative potential by using a charging bias voltage applied from a charging bias power supply (not illustrated).

    [0033] The developing devices 4a, 4b, 4c, and 4d includes toner of respective colors, applies the toner to electrostatic latent images formed on the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, and 2c and 2d, respectively, to develop visible toner images.

    [0034] The transfer rollers 5a, 5b, 5c, and 5d (primarily transfer units) are disposed to contact the photosensitive drum 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d via an intermediate transfer belt 8 (transfer unit), at primary transfer portions 32a, 32b, 32c, and 32d, respectively.

    [0035] The drum cleaning devices 6a, 6b, 6c, and 6d remove from the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d residual transfer toner remaining thereon, respectively, at the time of primary transfer.

    [0036] The intermediate transfer belt 8 is disposed on the upper face side of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d, and stretched by a secondary transfer counter roller 10 and a tension roller 11. A secondary transfer counter roller 10 is disposed to contact a secondary transfer roller 12 via the intermediate transfer belt 8 at a secondary transfer portion 34. The intermediate transfer belt 8 is made of a dielectric resin, such as polycarbonate, a polyethylene terephthalate resin film, and a polyvinylidene fluoride resin film.

    [0037] The intermediate transfer belt 8 is obliquely disposed in such a way that a primary transfer surface 8b (flat surface of the lower portion) thereof formed on the side facing the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d is arranged with the side of the secondary transfer roller 12 set lower than the other side.

    [0038] More specifically, the intermediate transfer belt 8 is obliquely disposed in such a way that the primary transfer surface 8b movably disposed on the upper surfaces of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d and formed on the side facing the photosensitive drums 2 with the side of the secondary transfer portion 34 set lower than the other side.

    [0039] Specifically, the angle of inclination is set to about 15 degrees. The intermediate transfer belt 8 is stretched by the secondary transfer counter roller 10 disposed on the side of the secondary transfer portion 34 to apply a driving force to the intermediate transfer belt 8 and the tension roller 11 disposed on the side facing the secondary transfer counter roller 10 via the primarily transferring portions 32a to 32d to apply tension to the intermediate transfer belt 8.

    [0040] The secondary transfer counter roller 10 is disposed to contact the secondary transfer roller 12 at the secondary transfer portion 34 via the intermediate transfer belt 8. A belt cleaning device (not illustrated) for removing and collecting residual transfer toner remaining on the surface of the endless intermediate transfer belt 8 is disposed in the vicinity of the tension roller 11 outside the intermediate transfer belt 8.

    [0041] A fixing device 16 including a fixing roller 16a and a pressure roller 16b is disposed on the downstream side of the secondary transfer portion 34 in the sheet conveyance direction.

    [0042] The laser exposure device 7 is composed of a laser emitting unit for emitting light corresponding to supplied image information (a time series electrical digital pixel signal), a polygon lens, reflection mirrors, and so on. The laser exposure device 7 performs exposure of the photosensitive drum 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d to form electrostatic latent images of respective colors according to the image information on the surfaces of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d charged by the primary charging devices 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d, respectively.

    [0043] The following describes image forming operations performed by the printing apparatus 400.

    [0044] For example, when a print instruction is made by the host computer 501, the printing apparatus 502 performs the following control. The primary charging devices 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d uniformly negatively charges the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d of the image formation units 1Y, 1M, and 1C and 1Bk, respectively, rotating at predetermined process speed.

    [0045] In the laser exposure device 7, the laser emitting unit emits laser light based on a color separation image signal input from outside. The laser light passes through a polygon lens, reflection mirrors, etc., and scans the surfaces of the photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d to form electrostatic latent images of respective colors.

    [0046] First of all, the developing device 4a, to which a developing bias voltage having the same polarity as the charged polarity (negative polarity) of the photosensitive drum 2a is applied, applies yellow toner to the electrostatic latent image formed on the photosensitive drum 2a to form a visible toner image.

    [0047] The transfer roller 5a, to which a primarily transfer bias voltage having the opposite polarity (positive polarity) to the toner polarity is applied, primarily transfers the yellow toner image onto the intermediate transfer belt 8 at the primarily transferring portion 32a between the photosensitive drum 2a and the transfer roller 5a.

    [0048] The intermediate transfer belt 8 with the yellow toner image transferred thereon is moved to the image formation unit 1M. Likewise, the image formation unit 1M transfers onto the intermediate transfer belt 8 a magenta toner image formed on the photosensitive drum 2b so that the magenta toner image is placed on top of the yellow toner image at the primarily transfer portion 32b.

    [0049] Likewise, the image formation units 1C and 1Bk transfer onto the intermediate transfer belt 8 cyan and black toner images formed on the photosensitive drums 2c and 2d, respectively, so that the cyan and black toner images are placed on top of the magenta and cyan toner images at the primarily transfer portions 32c and 32d, respectively. Thus, a full color toner image is formed on the intermediate transfer belt 8. Then, cleaner blades included in the drum cleaning devices 6a, 6b, 6c, and 6d remove residual transfer toner remaining on respective photosensitive drums 2a, 2b, 2c, and 2d, respectively.

    [0050] Then, in synchronization with a timing when the leading edge of the full color toner image on the intermediate transfer belt 8 reaches the secondary transfer portion 34 between the secondary transfer counter roller 10 and the secondary transfer roller 12, a registration roller pair 19 conveys a recording sheet to the secondary transfer portion 34. The sheet is selected from a sheet cassette 17 or a manual feed tray 20, and then conveyed via a conveyance path 18. In the present embodiment, a conveyance path from the registration roller pair 19 to a discharge roller pair 21 is referred to a one-sided conveyance path for convenience of description.

    [0051] The secondary transfer roller 12, to which the secondary transfer bias voltage having the opposite polarity (positive polarity) to the toner polarity is applied, collectively secondarily transfers the full color toner image onto the sheet conveyed to the secondary transfer portion 34.

    [0052] When the sheet with the full color toner image transferred thereon is conveyed to the fixing device 16, the fixing device 16 heats and pressurizes the full color toner image at a fixing nip portion 31 between the fixing roller 16a and the pressure roller 16b to fix the toner image onto the surface of the sheet. Then, the sheet is fed to a post-processing apparatus 33 (described below) by the discharge roller pair 21 and then discharged onto a discharge tray 22 at the top surface of the post-processing apparatus 33. This completes a series of image forming operations. A fixing motor 50 drives the discharge roller pair 21.

    [0053] The belt cleaning device removes and collects secondary residual transfer toner remaining on the intermediate transfer belt 8.

    [0054] The configuration of the finishing unit 401 (illustrated in Fig. 4) will be described in detail below with reference to Fig. 5. In the present embodiment, the finishing unit 401 is configured as a stapler. Referring to Fig. 5, the finishing unit 401 for performing post-processing at the time of sheet discharge is provided with a sheet entering portion 55 to enable the discharge roller pair 21 to feed the sheet into the finishing unit 401. To receive and convey the sheet from the printer unit 110, the finishing unit 401 takes synchronization by communicating with the printer unit 110 via the printing apparatus engine I/Funit 814. Then, the finishing unit 401 detects that the sheet has been conveyed from the sheet entering portion 55 via a sheet detection sensor 817. The sheet conveyed from the sheet entering portion 55 is discharged into a bundle tray 60 by a forwardly rotating conveyance roller 71. The conveyance roller 71 is driven by a driving force of a motor of the printer unit 110. A clutch configuration (not illustrated) enables the conveyance roller 71 to rotate in the forward and reverse rotational directions.

    [0055] With sheets discharged onto the bundle tray 60 and temporarily stacked in the bundle tray 60, a sorting member (not illustrated) horizontally shifts the sheets in the discharge direction. This processing is referred to as sorting processing.

    [0056] The finishing unit 401 shifts the sheets conveyed from the sheet entering portion 55 in units of a predetermined number of sheets in the sorting direction, and, after a predetermined number of sheets have been stacked, performs the stapling processing by using a stapler 58 as required. Then, a bungle output slider included in the stapler 58 slides to discharge the stacked sheets onto the discharge tray 22.

    [0057] The bundle tray 60 is provided with a sheet detection sensor 818 which notifies the printer unit 110 of whether sheets are stacked in the bundle tray 60 via a printing apparatus engine I/F unit 814.

    [0058] In the subsequent description, as illustrated in Fig. 5, the sheet discharge direction refers to a direction in which the sheet is conveyed by the discharge roller pair 21 rotating in the direction indicated by the arrows, and the sheet reversing direction refers to the direction in which the sheet is conveyed by the discharge roller pair 21 rotating in the direction opposite to the direction indicated by the arrows. The sheet conveyance direction refers to the direction in which the sheet is conveyed by the registration roller pair 19 and the two-sided roller pairs 40 and 41 rotating in the directions indicated by the arrows. The printer unit 110 is configured to, even in a state where a sheet P remains over the discharge roller pair 21 and the two-sided roller pairs 40 and 41, pull out the sheet P by rotating the two-sided roller pairs 40 and 41 driven by a feed motor 51.

    [0059] The following describes a relation between a stapling position specification and sheet conveyance control in a case where the finishing unit 401 is a finisher having an unmovable stapler (a stapler fixed to one position), with reference to Fig. 6. The following example will be described based on single-sided printing.

    [0060] Fig. 6 illustrates a relation between a stapling position specification and sheet conveyance control of the printing apparatus according to the present embodiment.

    [0061] Referring to Fig. 6, a stapling position can be selected from the four corners: "UPPER LEFT", "LOWER LEFT", "UPPER RIGHT", and "LOWER RIGHT" of the sheet P. The stapling position of the finishing unit 401 is fixed to the "LOWER LEFT" position described in Fig. 6. The orientation of a letter "F" indicates the orientation of the image to be printed on the sheet P. A letter "F" deeply illustrated indicates a face-up output (the printed side is face up), and a letter "F" faintly illustrated indicates a face-down output (the printed side is face down) .

    [0062] When the stapling position specification is "NONE", the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16, and discharges the sheet P without stapling.

    [0063] When the stapling position specification is "UPPER LEFT" and the sheet orientation is "PORTRAIT", the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, rotates the image by 180 degrees with respect to the image orientation that is set when the stapling position specification is "NONE", and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "UPPER LEFT" corner. When the sheet orientation is "LANDSCAPE", the CPU 311 prints input images from the last page (reverse printing) . The CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in a two-sided conveyance path 44, and reverses the sheet P. Finally, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "UPPER LEFT" corner.

    [0064] When the stapling position specification is "LOWER LEFT" and the sheet orientation is "PORTRAIT", the CPU 311 prints input images from the last page (reverse printing) . The CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, rotates the image by 180 degrees with respect to the image orientation that is set when the stapling position specification is "NONE", and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the two-sided conveyance path 44, and reverses the sheet P.

    [0065] Finally, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "LOWER LEFT" corner. When the sheet orientation is "LANDSCAPE", the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, rotates the image by 180 degrees with respect to the image orientation that is set when the stapling position specification is "NONE", and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "LOWER LEFT" corner.

    [0066] When the stapling position specification is "UPPER RIGHT" and the sheet orientation is "PORTRAIT", the CPU 311 prints input images from the last page (reverse printing) . The CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the two-sided conveyance path 44, and reverses the sheet P. Finally, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "UPPER RIGHT" corner. When the sheet orientation is "LANDSCAPE", the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "UPPER RIGHT" corner.

    [0067] When the stapling position specification is "LOWER RIGHT" and the sheet orientation is "PORTRAIT", the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, and fixes the image onto the sheet P via the fixing device 16. Then, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "LOWER RIGHT" corner. When the sheet orientation is "LANDSCAPE", the CPU 311 prints input images from the last page (reverse printing). The CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the one-sided conveyance path 43, rotates the image by 180 degrees with respect to the image orientation that is set when the stapling position specification is "NONE", and fixes the image via the fixing device 16. Then, the CPU 311 conveys the sheet P in the two-sided conveyance path 44, and reverses the sheet P. Finally, the finishing unit 401 applies stapling to the sheets P to enable providing a print product stapled at the "LOWER RIGHT" corner.

    [0068] The above-described control is implemented when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 sequentially reads a relevant program stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the program.

    [0069] The following describes stapling printing control according to the present embodiment with reference to the flowchart illustrated in Fig. 7. Fig. 7 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus according to the present embodiment. Staple printing control will be described in detail below. Each step in the flowchart is controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 reads a relevant program stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the program.

    [0070] In step S601, the CPU 311 receives print data (print information) including print setting information transmitted from the host PC 501 or 502 via the NIC 320. In step S602, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to generate an image based on the received print data, more specifically, whether any image for the print data has not yet been generated. The above-described print setting information includes the sheet setting information for specifying the sheet type to be used and the sheet orientation.

    [0071] When the CPU 311 determines that a certain image has not yet been generated for the print data (YES in step S602), then in step S603, the CPU 311 controls the RIP 323 to generate the relevant image based on the print data. The generated image data may be stored in the RAM 312 or the HDD 160. The CPU 311 generates an image based on the setting included in the print data (such as reduction layout, bookbinding, one-sided printing, two-sided printing, portrait printing, landscape printing, and stapling position) and the setting in the printing apparatus 400 (such as confidential printing and 2-color mode) . Stapling positions specifiable by the user includes upper left, lower left, upper right, and lower right.

    [0072] The print data further includes the output setting (for example, sheet feed stages, output sheet size, output sheet type, and finishing information, such as sorting, grouping, punching, and stapling). Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated (NO in step S602), the processing proceeds to step S604.

    [0073] In step S604, the CPU 311 determines whether the generated image is for the first page. When the CPU 311 determines that the generated image is for the first page (YES in step S604), the processing proceeds to step S605. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the generated image is not for the first page (NO in step S604), the processing proceeds to step S606.

    [0074] In step S605, the CPU 311 determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed based on the stapling position and printing sheet orientation (portrait printing or landscape printing) settings included in the above-described output setting. In forward printing, printing is made from the first page in order of image generation. In reverse printing, printing is made from the last page in reverse order of image generation.

    [0075] In step S606, the CPU 311 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable based on the information about forward printing or reverse printing determined in step S605 and the sheet information for the page of the generated image, because of the following reason. When the CPU 311 conveys a sheet in the two-sided conveyance path 44, the effect of rollers may crease the sheet, break the sheet during conveyance, or damage the sheet surface, depending on the sheet type. Therefore, the CPU 311 prestores in the HDD 160 the sheet type and information about whether the relevant sheet type is adversely affected when conveyed in the two-sided conveyance path 44. Then, based on the information stored in the HDD 160, the CPU 311 determines whether the sheet specified in the print data is adversely affected as described above when conveyed in the two-sided conveyance path 44. Sheet types which may be adversely affected when conveyed in the two-sided conveyance path 44 include thick paper, coated paper, and carbonless paper. The CPU 311 registers in the HDD 160 a flag for indicating effect by associating these sheet types with identification codes. This flag allows the CPU 311 to determine whether each sheet type specified in the relevant print data will be adversely affected when each sheet needs to be conveyed in the two-sided conveyance path 44 by the stapling position specification (described below).

    [0076] When the CPU 311 determines that the specified sheet type is conveyable (YES in step S606), the processing proceeds to step S610. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the specified sheet type is unconveyable (NO in step S606), then in step S607, the CPU 311 displays on the operation unit 150 a SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 (illustrated in Fig. 8) for changing the sheet type subjected to printing, and receives a sheet change operation from the user.

    [0077] The SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 illustrated in Fig. 8 includes a plurality of sheet feed stage selection buttons 701 for selecting the sheet cassette 17 of the printing apparatus 400, a CANCEL button 702 for canceling processing, and an OK button 703 for continuing processing based on the changed setting.

    [0078] For the selectable sheet feed stages associated with the sheet feed stage selection buttons 701, sheet information, such as the sheet size and sheet type set in the sheet feed stages of the printing apparatus 400, is also stored. This allows the user to select only a sheet feed stage in which a conveyable sheet type is set.

    [0079] When the user selects any one of the sheet feed stage selection buttons 701 to select a cassette sheet feed stage or manual sheet feed stage in which a sheet type subjected to printing is set, and then presses the OK button 703, the sheet type can be changed.

    [0080] In step S608, the CPU 311 determines whether the user has pressed the CANCEL button 702 in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 illustrated in Fig. 8. When the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the CANCEL button 702 (YES in step S608), then in step S615, the CPU 311 discards images that have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0081] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the OK button 703 in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 illustrated in Fig. 8 (NO in step S608), then in step S609, the CPU 311 reflects the change to the print output setting included in the print data by using the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 for changing the sheet type subjected to printing, thus changing the sheet type subjected to printing. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type specified in the print data is thick paper and reverse printing is required, the CPU 311 prompts the user to change the sheet type from "THICK PAPER" to "PLAIN PAPER" in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700. This enables preventing thick paper from being conveyed in the two-sided conveyance path 44 and creased.

    [0082] In step S610, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image generated in step S603. In step S611, the CPU 311 determines whether reverse printing was determined in step S605. When the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing was determined (YES in step S611), the processing proceeds to step S612. Otherwise, when the CPU determines that reverse printing was not determined (NO in step S611), then in step S613, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. The CPU 311 determines reverse printing or forward printing based on the relation between the stapling position and the image printing orientation illustrated in Fig. 6.

    [0083] In step S612, the CPU 311 determines whether all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (YES in step S612), then in step S613, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. At this timing, the CPU 311 applies 180-degree rotation processing to relevant images.

    [0084] In the print processing in step S613, the CPU 311 also performs the stapling processing based on the print output setting. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that not all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (NO in step S612), the processing proceeds to step S614.

    [0085] In step S614, the CPU 311 determines whether printing is completed for all of the print data received in step S601. When the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed not for all of the print data (NO in step S614), the processing returns to step S602, and the CPU 311 repeats relevant processing.

    [0086] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed for all of the print data (YES in step S614), then in step S615, the CPU 311 discards images stored in the HDD 160 (image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0087] Performing the above-described control enables changing a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 to a conveyable sheet type at the time of reverse printing in stapling control. Thus, stapling processing can be applied to a user-specified position. Further, the possibility of paper jam can be reduced, improving user convenience.

    [0088] According to the present embodiment, a method is described to detect the setting of a sheet type which should not be conveyed in the printing apparatus 400, notify the user of the fact, and change the sheet type to a conveyable sheet type. However, the printer drivers (not illustrated) on the host PCs 501 and 502 may acquire the sheet information about the currently conveyable sheet type from the printing apparatus 400, and generate print data. According to the present embodiment, the printing apparatus 400 is described to be based on a print job for receiving print data including the print setting information transmitted from the host PC 501 or 502, and generating and printing image data. However, the present embodiment is not limited to a print job, and may be applied to a copy job for reading a document image via the reader unit 200, and printing the image on a sheet via the printing unit 100. In step S601, the CPU 311 reads an image of the document via the reader unit 200. In steps S603 and S610, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 the image of the document read via the reader unit 200.

    [0089] Staple printing control according to the present embodiment has specifically been described with reference to Fig. 7. When performing reverse printing, the CPU 311 stores all of images for the print data in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) . However, not all of images for the print data can be stored in the HDD 160 because of insufficient capacity thereof. The following describes stapling printing control according to the capacity of the HDD 160, with reference to Fig. 9.

    [0090] Fig. 9, which is composed of Figs. 9A and 9B, is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus 400 according to the present embodiment. Staple printing control will be described in detail below. Each step in the flowchart is controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 reads a relevant program stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the program.

    [0091] In step S801, the controller unit 300 receives print data including the print setting information transmitted from the host PCs 501 and 502 via the NIC 320. In step S802, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to generate an image based on the received print data, more specifically, whether any image for the print data has not yet been generated, based on the control program to be executed. The above-described print setting information includes the sheet setting information for specifying the sheet type to be used and the sheet orientation.

    [0092] When the CPU 311 determines that a certain image for the print data has not yet been generated (YES in step S802), then in step S803, the CPU 311 generates the relevant image based on the print data. The CPU 311 generates an image based on the setting included in the print data (such as reduction layout, bookbinding, one-sided printing, two-sided printing, portrait printing, and landscape printing) and the setting in the printing apparatus 400 (such as confidential printing and 2-color mode). The print data further includes the output setting (for example, sheet feed stages, sheet size, sheet type, and finishing information, such as sorting, grouping, punching, and stapling).

    [0093] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that an image is not to be generated (NO in step S802), the processing proceeds to step S804. This case includes a case when an image is currently being processed, for example, an image has already been generated but has not yet been stored in the HDD 160 in step S814, and a case when all of images for the print data have been generated.

    [0094] In step S804, the CPU 311 determines the generated image is for the first page. When the CPU 311 determines that the image is for the first page (YES in step 5804), then in step S805, the CPU 311 determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed, and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be applied to relevant images, based on the setting of the stapling position and sheet orientation (portrait printing or landscape printing). Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the image is not for the first page (NO in step S804), the processing proceeds to step S806.

    [0095] In step S806, the CPU 311 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable in the one-sided conveyance path 43 or the two-sided conveyance path 44 based on the forward printing or reverse printing control information determined in step S805 and the sheet information of the page for the generated image determined in step S809. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type is conveyable (YES in step S806), the processing proceeds to step S810. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the sheet is unconveyable (NO in step S806), then in step S807, the CPU 311 displays the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 (illustrated in Fig. 8) for changing the sheet type corresponding to the sheet type subjected to printing, and prompts the user to change the sheet type.

    [0096] The SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 illustrated in Fig. 8 includes the plurality of sheet feed stage selection buttons 701 for selecting the sheet cassette 17 of the printing apparatus 400, a CANCEL button 702 for canceling processing, and an OK button 703 for continuing processing based on the changed setting.

    [0097] For the selectable sheet feed stages displayed with the plurality of sheet feed stage selection buttons 701, sheet information, such as size and type of the sheet type set in the sheet feed stages of the printing apparatus 400, is also stored. This allows the user to select only a sheet feed stage where a conveyable sheet type is set.

    [0098] When the user selects any one of the sheet feed stage selection buttons 701 to select a cassette sheet feed stage or manual sheet feed stage in which a sheet type subjected to printing is set, and then presses the OK button 703, the sheet type can be changed.

    [0099] In step S808, the CPU 311 determines whether the user has pressed the CANCEL button 702 in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 illustrated in Fig. 8. When the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the CANCEL button 702 (YES in step S808), then in step S820, the CPU 311 discards images that have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0100] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the OK button 703 in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 (illustrated in Fig. 8) for changing the sheet type subjected to printing (NO in step S808), then in step S809, the CPU 311 reflects the setting changed in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 to the print output setting included in the print data to change the sheet type subjected to printing. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type specified in the print data is "THICK PAPER" and reverse printing is required, the CPU 311 prompts the user to change the sheet type from "THICK PAPER" to "PLAIN PAPER" in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700. This enables preventing the sheet from being creased even with reverse printing.

    [0101] In step S810, the CPU 311 determines whether there is an area in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) for storing the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S803. When the CPU 311 determines that there is an area in the HDD 160 for storing the image (YES in step S810), then in step S814, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S803.

    [0102] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that there is no area or there is not a sufficient area in the HDD 160 for storing the image (NO in step S810), then in step S811, the CPU 311 displays the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A on the operation unit 150, and receives a changed stapling setting (print output setting) from the user, since reverse printing and control of a plurality of copies are not possible.

    [0103] The output setting screen 900 includes an NUMBER OF COPIES setting box 901 for changing the number of copies to be output, a CHANGE SETTING button 902 for displaying a CHANGE SETTING screen 910 displaying a list of changeable print settings, a CANCEL button 903 for canceling processing, and an OK button 904 for continuing processing based on the changed setting. In this case, the NUMBER OF COPIES setting box 901 in the output setting screen 900 is set to 1 since electronic sorting multiple copy output (in which images are stored in the HDD 160 of the printing apparatus 400 and printing is performed a plurality of number of times) is not possible.

    [0104] When the user presses the CHANGE SETTING button 902 in the output setting screen 900, the CPU 311 displays the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 on the operation unit 150.

    [0105] The CHANGE SETTING screen 910 includes a setting item list 911 displaying a list of changeable setting items, a CHANGE button 912 for proceeding to the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 for a setting item selected from the setting item list 911, and an OK button 913 for returning to the output setting screen 900. In the present embodiment, when the user selects "FINISHING" from the setting item list 911 and then presses the CHANGE button 912 intending to change the stapling setting, the CPU 311 displays a FINISHING screen 920 on the operation unit 150.

    [0106] The FINISHING screen 920 includes a CANCEL SETTING button 922 for canceling the finishing setting, and a STAPLING button 921 for changing the stapling setting. When the user presses a BACK button 923 for returning to the FINISHING screen 920, the CPU 311 redisplays the previous screen (the CHANGE SETTING screen 910) . The user selects a finishing type and then presses a NEXT button 924. Then, the CPU 311 displays a SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 on the operation unit 150.

    [0107] The SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 includes stapling position setting buttons 931 (UPPER LEFT, LOWER LEFT, UPPER RIGHT, and LOWER RIGHT) for selecting a stapling position, and a CANCEL SETTING button 932 for canceling the stapling setting.

    [0108] The SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 further includes a BACK button 933 for returning to the previous screen (the FINISHING screen 920), and an OK button 934 for applying the setting and returning to the output setting screen 900. Based on the relation between the stapling position specification and sheet conveyance control illustrated in Fig. 6, the CPU 311 performs control to enable selecting a staplable position in forward printing control by using the stapling position setting buttons 931 in the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930. When the user has changed the stapling position and then presses the OK button 934, the CPU 311 redisplays the output setting screen 900 on the operation unit 150.

    [0109] In step S812, the CPU 311 determines whether the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 in the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A. When the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 (YES in step S812), then in step S820, the CPU 311 discards images that have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0110] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the OK button 904 in the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A (NO in step S812), then in step S813, the CPU 311 reflects the setting changed in the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 to the print output setting included in the print data, and determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed.

    [0111] In step S814, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S803. In step S815, based on the information illustrated in Fig. 6, the CPU 311 determines whether the printing method determined in step S805 or S813 is reverse printing. When the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing is to be performed (YES in step S815), the processing proceeds to step S816. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing is not to be performed (NO in step S815), then in step S817, the CPU 311 performs the print processing.

    [0112] In step S816, the CPU 311 determines whether all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (YES in step S816), then in step S817, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. At this timing, the CPU 311 also applies 180-degree rotation processing to relevant images.

    [0113] In the print processing in step S817, the CPU 311 also performs the stapling processing based on the print output setting. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that not all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (NO in step S816), the processing proceeds to step S819.

    [0114] In step S818, the CPU 311 discards from the HDD 160 images that have been printed and no longer reused. Discarding images that have been no longer reused in step S818 enables allocating an area for storing new images.

    [0115] In step S819, the CPU 311 determines whether printing is completed for all of the print data received in step S801. When the CPU 311 determines that printing is not completed (NO in step S819), the processing returns to step S802, and the CPU 311 repeats relevant processing. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed (YES in step S819), the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0116] With the above-described control, even if there is not a sufficient area in the HDD 160 for storing images in stapling control according to the present embodiment, printing can be continued by changing the stapling position related to the print output setting and finishing setting so that not all of images need to be stored. Specifically, the CPU 311 changes the stapling position setting to specify a stapling position not requiring reverse printing.

    [0117] Fig. 11 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus according to a second embodiment of the present invention. Staple printing control will be described in detail below. Steps in the flowchart are controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 sequentially reads relevant programs stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the programs.

    [0118] In step S1101, the controller unit 300 receives print data including the print setting information transmitted from the host PCs 501 and 502 via the NIC 320. In step S1102, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to generate an image based on the received print data, more specifically, whether any image for the print data has not yet been generated, based on the control program to be executed. When the CPU 311 determines that a certain image for the print data has not yet been generated (YES in step S1102), then in step S1103, the CPU 311 controls the RIP 323 to generate the relevant image based on the print data on the RAM 312. The above-described print setting information includes the sheet setting information for specifying the sheet type to be used and the sheet orientation.

    [0119] The CPU 311 generates an image based on the setting included in the print data (such as reduction layout, bookbinding, one-sided printing, two-sided printing, portrait printing, and landscape printing) and the setting in the printing apparatus 400 (such as confidential printing and 2-color mode).

    [0120] The print data further includes the output setting (for example, sheet feed stages, sheet size, sheet type, and finishing information, such as sorting, grouping, punching, and stapling).

    [0121] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated (NO in step S1102), then in step S1104, the CPU 311 determines whether the generated image is for the first page. This is because some PDL print data items allow print output setting for each page.

    [0122] When the CPU 311 determines that the generated image is for the first page (YES in step S1104), then in step S1105, the CPU 311 determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed based on the setting of the stapling position and sheet orientation (portrait printing or landscape printing), and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be applied to relevant images.

    [0123] Otherwise, when the generated image is not for the first page (NO in step S1104), then in step S1106, the CPU 311 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable in the one-sided conveyance path 43 and the two-sided conveyance path 44 based on the information about forward printing or reverse printing determined in step S1105 and the sheet information for the page of the generated image. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type is conveyable (YES in step S1106), the processing proceeds to step S1110.

    [0124] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the specified sheet type is unconveyable (NO in step S1106), then in step S1107, the CPU 311 displays on the operation unit 150 the output setting screen 900 (illustrated in Fig. 10A) for setting the stapling position. Then, the CPU 311 receives a changed stapling setting (print output setting) from the user.

    [0125] The output setting screen 900 includes the NUMBER OF COPIES setting box 901 for changing the number of copies to be output, the CHANGE SETTING button 902 for displaying the CHANGE SETTING screen 910, the CANCEL button 903 for canceling processing, and the OK button 904 for continuing processing based on the changed setting.

    [0126] When the user presses the CHANGE SETTING button 902 in the output setting screen 900, the CPU 311 displays the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 on the operation unit 150. The CHANGE SETTING screen 910 includes the setting item list 911 displaying a list of changeable setting items, the CHANGE button 912 for proceeding to the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 for a setting item selected from the setting item list 911, and the OK button 913 for returning to the output setting screen 900. In the present embodiment, when the user selects a type of finishing from the setting item list 911 and then presses the CHANGE button 912 intending to change the stapling setting, the CPU 311 displays the FINISHING screen 920 on the operation unit 150.

    [0127] The FINISHING screen 920 includes the CANCEL SETTING button 922 for canceling the finishing setting, and the STAPLING button 921 for changing the stapling setting. When the user presses the BACK button 923 in the FINISHING screen 920, the CPU 311 redisplays the previous screen (the CHANGE SETTING screen 910) . When the user selects a finishing type and then presses the NEXT button 924, the CPU 311 displays the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 on the operation unit 150.

    [0128] The SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 includes the stapling position setting buttons 931 (UPPER LEFT, LOWER LEFT, UPPER RIGHT, and LOWER RIGHT) for selecting a stapling position, the CANCEL SETTING button 932 for canceling the stapling setting, the BACK button 933 for returning to the previous screen (the FINISHING screen 920), and the OK button 934 for applying the setting and returning to the output setting screen 900.

    [0129] In the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930, the CPU 311 performs control to allow the user to select a staplable position (any one of the stapling position setting buttons 931) in forward printing, based on the relation between the stapling position specification and sheet conveyance control illustrated in Fig. 6. When the user changes the stapling position and then presses the OK button 934, the CPU 311 redisplays the output setting screen 900 on the operation unit 150.

    [0130] In step S1108, the CPU 311 determines whether the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 in the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A. When the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 (YES in step S1108), then in step S1115, the CPU 311 discards images that have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0131] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the OK button 904 illustrated in Fig. 10A (NO in step S1108), then in step S1109, the CPU 311 reflects the setting (stapling position) changed in the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 for setting the stapling position, to conform to the print output setting included in the print data. Then, the CPU 311 determines whether which of forward printing control and reverse printing control is to be performed, and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be applied to relevant images.

    [0132] In step S1110, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S1103. In step S1111, the CPU 311 determines whether the control determined in steps S1105 and S1109 is reverse printing control. When the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing control is to be performed (YES in step S1111), the processing proceeds to step S1112. Otherwise, when reverse printing control is not to be performed (NO in step S1111), then in step S1113, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. At this timing, the CPU 311 applies 180-degree rotation processing to relevant images.

    [0133] In step S1112, the CPU 311 determines whether all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (YES in step S1112), then in step S1113, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. In the print processing in step S1113, the CPU 311 also performs the stapling processing based on the print output setting. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that not all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (NO in step S1112), the processing proceeds to step S1114.

    [0134] In step S1114, the CPU 311 determines whether printing is completed for all of the print data received in step S1101. When the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed not for all of the print data (NO in step S1114), the processing returns to step S1102, and the CPU 311 repeats relevant processing.

    [0135] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed for all of the print data (YES in step S1114), then in step S1115, the CPU 311 discards images stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0136] With the above-described control, even if a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 is set, forward printing not requiring sheet conveyance in the two-sided conveyance path 44 can be selected by changing the stapling setting. The CPU 311 not only cancels output processing but also notifies the user of an alternative method enabling stapling processing, improving user convenience.

    [0137] In the present embodiment, the CPU 311 performs control, when it detects a setting of a sheet type which should not be conveyed in the printing apparatus 400, to prompt the user to change the stapling setting. The same effect will be obtained even when the printer drivers (not illustrated) on the host PCs 501 and 502 acquire the sheet information of the sheet cassette of the printing apparatus 400, and generate print data.

    [0138] Staple printing control has specifically been described with reference to Fig. 11. Reverse printing becomes controllable when all of images for the print data have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) . However, not all of images for the print data can be stored because of an insufficient capacity of the HDD 160. Example processing for coping with this problem will be described below.

    [0139] Fig. 12 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling the printing apparatus according to the present embodiment. Staple printing control will be described in detail below. Steps in the flowchart are controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 sequentially reads relevant programs stored in the ROM 313 and the HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and executes the programs.

    [0140] In step S1201, the controller unit 300 receives the print data including the print setting information transmitted from the host PCs 501 and 502 via the NIC 320. In step S1202, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to generate an image based on the received print data, more specifically, whether any image for the print data has not yet been generated, based on the control program to be executed. When the CPU 311 determines that a certain image for the print data has not yet been generated (YES in step S1202), then in step S1203, the CPU 311 controls the RIP 323 to generate the relevant image based on the print data on the RAM 312. The above-described print setting information includes the sheet setting information for specifying the sheet type to be used and the sheet orientation.

    [0141] The CPU 311 generates an image based on the setting included in the print data (such as reduction layout, bookbinding, one-sided printing, two-sided printing, portrait printing, and landscape printing) and the setting in the printing apparatus 400 (such as confidential printing and 2-color mode). The print data further includes the output setting (for example, sheet feed stages, sheet size, sheet type, and finishing information, such as sorting, grouping, punching, and stapling).

    [0142] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that an image is not to be generated (NO in step S1202), the processing proceeds to step S1204. This case includes a case when an image is currently being processed, for example, an image has already been generated but has not yet been stored in the HDD 160 in step S1211, and a case when all of images for the print data have been generated.

    [0143] In step S1204, the CPU 311 determines whether the generated image is for the first page. This is because some PDL print data items allow print output setting for each page. When the CPU 311 determines that the generated image is for the first page (YES in step S1204), then in step S1205, the CPU 311 determines whether which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed based on the setting of the stapling position and sheet orientation (portrait printing or landscape printing).

    [0144] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the generated image is for the first page (NO in step S1204), the processing proceeds to step S1206.

    [0145] In step S1206, based on the information about forward printing or reverse printing determined in steps S1205 and S1209 and the sheet information for the page of the generated image, the CPU 311 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable in the one-sided conveyance path 43 and the two-sided conveyance path 44. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type is conveyable (YES in step S1206), the processing proceeds to step S1210.

    [0146] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the sheet is unconveyable (NO in step S1206), then in step S1207, the CPU 311 displays the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 (illustrated in Fig. 8) for setting the stapling position on the operation unit 150, and receives a changed stapling setting (print output setting).

    [0147] The output setting screen 900 includes the NUMBER OF COPIES setting box 901 for changing the number of copies to be output, the CHANGE SETTING button 902 for displaying the CHANGE SETTING screen 910, the CANCEL button 903 for canceling processing, and the OK button 904 for continuing processing based on the changed setting.

    [0148] When the user presses the CHANGE SETTING button 902 in the output setting screen 900, the CPU 311 displays the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 on the operation unit 150. The CHANGE SETTING screen 910 includes the setting item list 911 displaying a list of changeable setting items, the CHANGE button 912 for proceeding to the CHANGE SETTING screen 910 for a setting item selected from the setting item list 911, and the OK button 913 for returning to the output setting screen 900.

    [0149] In the present embodiment, when the user selects a type of finishing from the setting item list 911 and then presses the CHANGE button 912 intending to change the stapling setting, the CPU 311 displays the FINISHING screen 920 on the operation unit 150. The FINISHING screen 920 includes the CANCEL SETTING button 922 for canceling the finishing setting, and the STAPLING button 921 for changing the stapling setting.

    [0150] When the user presses the BACK button 923 in the FINISHING screen 920, the CPU 311 redisplays the previous screen (the CHANGE SETTING screen 910). When the user selects a finishing type and then presses the NEXT button 924, the CPU 311 displays the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 on the operation unit 150. The SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 includes the stapling position setting buttons 931 for selecting a stapling position, the CANCEL SETTING button 932 for canceling the stapling setting, the BACK button 933 for returning to the previous screen (the FINISHING screen 920), and the OK button 934 for applying the setting and returning to the output setting screen 900. The CPU 311 performs control in the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 to allow the user to select a staplable position (any one of the stapling position setting buttons 931) in forward printing control based on the relation of the stapling position specification and conveyance control illustrated in Fig. 6. When the user changes the stapling position and then presses the OK button 934, the CPU 311 redisplays the output setting screen 900.

    [0151] In step S1208, the CPU 311 determines whether the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 in the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A. When the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the CANCEL button 903 (YES in step S1208), then in step S1217, the CPU 311 discards images that have been stored in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400), and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0152] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the user has pressed the OK button 904 in the output setting screen 900 illustrated in Fig. 10A (NO in step S1208), then in step S1209, the CPU 311 reflects the setting (stapling position) changed in the output setting screen 900 for setting the stapling position, to conform to the print output setting included in the print data. Then, the CPU 311 determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed, and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be applied to relevant images.

    [0153] In step S1210, the CPU 311 determines whether there is an area in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) for storing the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S1203. When the CPU 311 determines that there is an area for storing the image (YES in step S1210), then in step S1211, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S1203. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that there is no area for storing the image (NO in step S1210), then in step S1207, the CPU 311 changes the print output setting since reverse printing and control of a plurality of copies are not possible. In this case, the NUMBER OF COPIES setting box 901 in the output setting screen 900 is set to 1 since electronic sorting multiple copy output (in which images are stored in the HDD 160 of the printing apparatus 400 and printing is performed a plurality of number of times) is not possible.

    [0154] In step S1211, the CPU 311 stores in the HDD 160 (an image storage unit of the printing apparatus 400) the image loaded on the RAM 312 in step S1203. In step S1212, based on the information indicating the relation between the stapling position and the sheet orientation illustrated in Fig. 6, the CPU 311 determines whether the control determined in steps S1205 and S1209 is reverse printing. When the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing is to be performed (YES in step S1212), the processing proceeds to step S1213. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that reverse printing is not to be performed (NO in step S1212), then in step S1214, the CPU 311 performs the print processing.

    [0155] In step S1213, the CPU 311 determines whether all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (YES in step S1213), then in step S1214, the CPU 311 performs the print processing. At this timing, the CPU 311 also applies 180-degree rotation processing to relevant images.

    [0156] In the print processing in step S1214, the CPU 311 also performs the stapling processing based on the print output setting. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that not all of images for the print data have been generated and stored in the HDD 160 (NO in step S1213), the processing proceeds to step S1216.

    [0157] In step S1215, the CPU 311 discards from the HDD 160 images that have been printed and no longer reused. Discarding images that have been no longer reused in this way enables allocating an area for storing new images.

    [0158] In step S1216, the CPU 311 determines whether printing is completed for all of the print data received in step S1201. When the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed not for all of the print data (NO in step S1216), the processing returns to step S1202, and the CPU 311 repeats relevant processing. Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that printing is completed for all of the print data (YES in step S1216), the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0159] With the above-described control, even if there is not a sufficient area in the HDD 160 for storing images in stapling control according to the present embodiment, printing can be continued by changing the stapling setting and the number of copies to be output. The CPU 311 not only cancels output processing but also notifies the user of an alternative method enabling stapling processing, improving user convenience.

    [0160] According to the above-described embodiments, when reverse printing is to be performed in stapling control, a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 can be changed to a conveyable sheet type. Thus, stapling processing can be reliably applied to a user-specified position. Further, since specification of an unconveyable sheet type can be avoided, the possibility of paper jam can be reduced, improving user convenience.

    [0161] A print job is described to generate print data including the print setting information, such as stapling position, transmitted from the host PC 501 or 502, and generate and print image data, with reference to Fig. 11. In a third embodiment of the present invention, a copy job for printing via the printer unit 110 an image of a document read by the scanner unit 210 will be described below. In the case of a copy job, the user sets the print output and printing sheet by using the operation unit 150 of the printing apparatus 400. The controller unit 300 determines whether sheet conveyance for reversing the sheet is possible based on the information about the printing sheet type and whether the sheet is adversely affected by two-sided conveyance stored in the HDD 160 (described in the first embodiment). The following describes output setting control of a copy job with reference to Fig. 13.

    [0162] Fig. 13 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus according to the third embodiment. The present embodiment is an example of output setting control of a copy job. Each step in the flowchart is controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 reads a program stored in the ROM 313 or HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and then executes the program.

    [0163] In step S1301, the CPU 311 displays the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 700 (illustrated in Fig. 8) on the operation unit 150. In step S1302, the CPU 311 receives an operation instruction from the user, and sets the sheet type. In step S1303, the CPU 311 displays the print output setting screen 920 and the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 (illustrated in Fig. 10B) on the operation unit 150. At this timing, the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 displays a screen for allowing the user to set all of stapling positions processable by the finishing unit 401 regardless of the printing sheet type set in step S1302. In step S1304, the CPU 311 receives an operation instruction from the user, and sets the stapling position in the screen displayed in step S1303.

    [0164] Although, in the present embodiment, the printing sheet type is set first and then print output setting is performed, it is also possible to perform print output setting first and then set the printing sheet type. Even if setting requiring two-sided conveyance is made in stapling position setting first, a printing sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 is selectable in the subsequent printing sheet setting screen.

    [0165] In step S1305, based on the printing sheet type set in step S1302 and the information about the stapling position set in step S1304, the CPU 311 determines which of reverse printing and forward printing is to be performed, and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be performed.

    [0166] In step S1306, when the user sets a document on the document feed unit 250 and then presses a job start button (not illustrated) on the operation unit 150, the CPU 311 detects the press of the button, and instructs the controller unit 300 to start a copy operation. In step S1307, based on the information about the stapling position and printing sheet type set upon reception of a copy start instruction, the CPU 311 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 by using determination information recorded in the above-described HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type is conveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 (YES in step S1307), then in step S1308, the CPU 311 performs document read processing. In step S1309, the CPU 311 executes a copy job such as print output processing.

    [0167] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that the sheet type is unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 (NO in step S1307), then in step S1310, the CPU 311 displays a screen for prompting the user to change the stapling position or printing sheet type, and the processing returns to step S1301. Not starting the copy job in this way enables preventing paper jam, improving user convenience.

    [0168] In step S1308, upon reception of a read start instruction, the CPU 311 instructs the reader unit 200 to start reading the document. Then, the CPU 311 instructs the reader unit 200 to process image information of the read document to generate printable image data. In step S1309, the CPU 311 instructs the printing unit 100 to perform the print output processing for outputting the above-described image data to the selected sheet, and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0169] In the embodiment described with reference to Fig. 13, the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 determines whether the specified sheet type is conveyable upon reception of a copy start instruction with the job start button (not illustrated) on the operation unit 150. However, it is possible to determine whether the specified sheet type is conveyable based on information about determined setting values immediately before displaying each screen for setting the stapling position and printing sheet type.

    [0170] In a fourth embodiment of the present invention, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to convey the printing sheet in the two-sided conveyance path 44 based on the set stapling position, and prevents a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44 from being selected in the sheet setting screen.

    [0171] Fig. 14 is a flowchart illustrating a method for controlling a printing apparatus according to the fourth embodiment. Each step in the flowchart is controlled when the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300 reads a program stored in the ROM 313 or HDD 160 into the RAM 312, and then executes the program.

    [0172] In step S1401, the CPU 311 displays the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930. In step S1402, the CPU 311 receives an operation instruction from the user, and sets the stapling position. In step S1403, the CPU 311 determines which of forward printing and reverse printing is to be performed based on the stapling position and sheet orientation settings, and determines whether 180-degree rotation processing is to be applied to relevant images.

    [0173] In step S1404, based on the forward printing or reverse printing information determined in step S1403, the CPU 311 determines whether it is necessary to convey the printing sheet in the two-sided conveyance path 44 by using the determination information stored in the HDD 160. When the CPU 311 determines that it is necessary to convey the specified printing sheet in the two-sided conveyance path 44 (YES in step S1404), then in step S1406, the CPU 311 displays on the operation unit 150 a SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 (illustrated in Fig. 15) for allowing the user to set only a sheet type in the two-sided conveyance path 44, and the processing proceeds to step S1407. At this timing, the CPU 311 disables (grays out) "THICK PAPER" to prevent it from being selected.

    [0174] More specifically, in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 illustrated in Fig. 15, the CPU 311 disables (grays out) a setting button 1501 for a sheet type unsuitable for two-sided conveyance to prevent it from being selected when pressed.

    [0175] Otherwise, when the CPU 311 determines that it is not necessary to convey the printing sheet in the two-sided conveyance path 44 (NO in step S1404), then in step S1405, the CPU 311 displays on the operation unit 150 the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 for allowing the user to set all of sheet types. In step S1407, the CPU 311 sets as the printing sheet a sheet type selected by the user in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 displaying all of sheet types. Thus, when two-sided conveyance is not to be performed, the CPU 311 displays in step S1405 the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 allowing the user to select a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44.

    [0176] In step S1408, when the user presses the job start button (not illustrated) on the operation unit 150, a start job instruction is notified to the CPU 311 of the controller unit 300. In step S1409, upon reception of a read start instruction, the CPU 311 instructs the reader unit 200 to start reading the document. Then, the CPU 311 instructs the reader unit 200 to process image information of the read document to generate printable image data. In step S1410, the CPU 311 instructs the printing unit 100 to perform the print output processing for outputting the above-described image data to the selected sheet, and the processing exits this flowchart.

    [0177] Although, in the flowchart illustrated in Fig. 14, the stapling position is set first and then the printing sheet type is selected, it is also possible to set the sheet type first and then set the stapling position. In this case, if the printing sheet type set first is of a sheet type unconveyable in the two-sided conveyance path 44, only a staplable position not requiring two-sided conveyance is selectable in the stapling position specification screen.

    [0178] When a sheet cassette in which "THICK PAPER" is set is selected, the CPU 311 may perform the following control instead of the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen display control according to the above-described embodiments.

    [0179] More specifically, for example, when the CPU 311 determines that a button corresponding to "THICK PAPER" is selected in the SELECT SHEET TYPE screen 1500 illustrated in Fig. 8, the CPU 311 may perform the following control. Specifically, when displaying the SET STAPLING POSITION screen 930 illustrated in Fig. 10B, the CPU 311 may disable (gray out) a stapling position requiring reverse printing to prevent it from being selected.

    [0180] While the present invention has been described with reference to embodiments, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments. The scope of the present invention is defined by the following claims.


    Claims

    1. A printing apparatus comprising:

    a printing means arranged to print an image on a sheet;
    a reversing means (44) arranged to reverse the sheet on which the image has been printed by the printing means;
    a receiving means (150)arranged to receive a stapling position on said sheet to be subjected to stapling designated by a user; and
    a control means (300) arranged, in a case where the stapling position received by the receiving means is a first position, to control the printing means and the reversing means to print the image on the sheet and not reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the stapling position received by the receiving means without reversing the sheet on which the image is printed by the printing means, and, in a case where the stapling position received by the receiving means is a second position, to control the printing means and the reversing means to print the image on the sheet and reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the stapling position on the sheet received by the receiving means after reversing the sheet on which the image is printed by the printing means;
    characterized in that the printing apparatus further comprises

    a display means (150), arranged, in case where the sheet subjected to image printing by the printing means is of a type unsuitable for reversal, prior to printing to display a screen (700) for prompting a user to change the type of sheet to be used for printing by the printing means.


     
    2. A printing apparatus comprising:

    a printing means arranged to print an image on a sheet;
    a reversing means (44) arranged to reverse the sheet on which the image has been printed by the printing means;
    a receiving means arranged to receive a stapling position on said sheet to be subjected to stapling designated by a user; and
    a control means arranged, in a case where the stapling position received by the receiving means is a first position, to control the printing means and the reversing means to print the image on the sheet and not reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the stapling position received by the receiving means without reversing front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed by the printing means, and, in a case where the stapling position received by the receiving means is a second position, to control the printing means and the reversing means to print the image on the sheet and reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the stapling position received by the receiving means after reversing the front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed by the printing means;
    characterized in that the printing apparatus further comprises

    a display means (150) arranged, in a case where the sheet to be subjected to image printing by the printing means is of a type unsuitable for reversal, prior to printing to display a screen (700) for prompting a user to change the stapling position to be subjected to staple.


     
    3. The printing apparatus according to claim 1, wherein the display means is arranged to display the screen for prompting a user to change the type of the sheet to be subjected to printing by the printing means in a state that a sheet of a type unsuitable for reversal is identifiable.
     
    4. The printing apparatus according to any of claims 1 to 3, further comprising
    a reading means arranged to read an image of a document,
    wherein the printing means is arranged to print on the sheet the image of the document read by the reading means.
     
    5. The printing apparatus according to claim 4, wherein, in a case where the sheet to be subjected to image printing by the printing means is of a type unsuitable for reversal, the display means is arranged to display, before the reading means starts reading the image, the screen for prompting a user to change the type of sheet to be subjected to printing by the printing means.
     
    6. The printing apparatus according to any of claims 1 to 5, wherein the printing means is arranged to print the image on a sheet of a type changed via the screen.
     
    7. The printing apparatus according to any of claims 1 to 6, wherein the control means is arranged to control the printing means not to start printing the image in a case where the sheet to be subjected to image printing by the printing means is of a type unsuitable for reversal
     
    8. A control method for controlling a printing apparatus, the control method comprising:

    printing an image on a sheet;

    receiving a stapling position on the sheet to be subjected to stapling designated by a user; and

    controlling, in a case where the received stapling position to be subjected to staple is a first position, to print the image on the sheet and not reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the received stapling position on the sheet without reversing the front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed, and, controlling, in a case where the received stapling position is a second position, to print the image on the sheet and reverse the front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the received stapling position after reversing the front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed thereon;
    characterized in that the control method further comprises

    displaying, in a case where the type of the sheet to be subjected to image printing is of a type unsuitable for reversal, prior to printing a screen for prompting the user to change the type of the sheet to be used for printing.


     
    9. A control method for controlling a printing apparatus, the control method comprising:

    printing an image on a sheet;

    receiving a stapling position on the sheet to be subjected to stapling designated by a user; and

    controlling, in a case where the received stapling position is a first position, to print the image on the sheet and not reverse front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the received stapling position on the sheet without reversing the front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed, and, controlling, in a case where the received stapling position is a second position, to print the image on the sheet and reverse the front and back sides of the sheet so as to perform stapling at the received stapling position on the sheet after reversing the front and back sides of the sheet on which the image is printed;
    characterized in that the control method further comprises

    displaying, in a case where the type of the sheet to be subjected to image printing is of a type unsuitable for reversal, prior to printing a screen for prompting the user to change the stapling position subjected to staple.


     
    10. A program that, when executed by a printing apparatus, causes the printing apparatus to perform a method according to claim 8.
     
    11. A non-transitory computer-readable storage medium storing a computer program according to claim 10.
     
    12. A program that, when executed by a printing apparatus, causes the printing apparatus to perform a method according to claim 9.
     
    13. A non-transitory computer-readable storage medium storing a computer program according to claim 12.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Druckvorrichtung, umfassend:

    eine Druckeinrichtung, die ausgelegt ist, ein Bild auf einen Bogen zu drucken;

    eine Umdreheinrichtung (44), die ausgelegt ist, den durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogen umzudrehen;

    eine Empfangseinrichtung (150), die ausgelegt ist, eine durch einen Benutzer angegebene Klammerposition auf dem Bogen zu empfangen, der einem Klammern unterzogen werden soll; und

    eine Steuereinrichtung (300), die ausgelegt ist, falls die durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangene Klammerposition eine erste Position ist, die Druckeinrichtung und die Umdreheinrichtung zu steuern, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens nicht umzudrehen, um Klammern an der durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangenen Klammerposition durchzuführen, ohne den durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogen umzudrehen, und, falls die durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangene Klammerposition eine zweite Position ist, die Druckeinrichtung und die Umdreheinrichtung zu steuern, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens so umzudrehen, um nach Umdrehen des Bogens Klammern an der durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangenen Klammerposition auf dem durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogen durchzuführen;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Druckvorrichtung weiterhin umfasst:
    eine Anzeigeeinrichtung (150), die ausgelegt ist, falls der einem Bilddruck durch die Druckeinrichtung unterzogene Bogen von einer zum Umdrehen ungeeigneten Art ist, vor dem Drucken einen Bildschirm (700) anzuzeigen, um einen Benutzer zum Ändern der zum Drucken durch die Druckeinrichtung zu verwendenden Art Bogen zu veranlassen.


     
    2. Druckvorrichtung, umfassend:

    eine Druckeinrichtung, die ausgelegt ist, ein Bild auf einen Bogen zu drucken;

    eine Umdreheinrichtung (44), die ausgelegt ist, den durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogen umzudrehen;

    eine Empfangseinrichtung, die ausgelegt ist, eine durch einen Benutzer angegebene Klammerposition auf dem Bogen zu empfangen, der einem Klammern unterzogen werden soll; und

    eine Steuereinrichtung, die ausgelegt ist, falls die durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangene Klammerposition eine erste Position ist, die Druckeinrichtung und die Umdreheinrichtung zu steuern, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens nicht umzudrehen, um Klammern an der durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangenen Klammerposition durchzuführen, ohne Vorder- und Rückseiten des durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens umzudrehen; und, falls die durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangene Klammerposition eine zweite Position ist, die Druckeinrichtung und die Umdreheinrichtung zu steuern, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens so umzudrehen, um nach Umdrehen der Vorder- und Rückseiten des durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens Klammern an der durch die Empfangseinrichtung empfangenen Klammerposition auf dem durch die Druckeinrichtung mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogen durchzuführen;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Druckvorrichtung weiterhin umfasst:
    eine Anzeigeeinrichtung (150), die ausgelegt ist, falls der einem Bilddruck durch die Druckeinrichtung zu unterziehende Bogen von einer Art ist, die nicht zum Umdrehen geeignet ist, vor dem Drucken einen Bildschirm (700) anzuzeigen, um einen Benutzer zum Ändern der dem Klammern zu unterziehenden Klammerposition zu veranlassen.


     
    3. Druckvorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Anzeigeeinrichtung ausgelegt ist, den Bildschirm zum Veranlassen eines Benutzers zum Ändern der Sorte des Bogens, der einem Drucken durch die Druckeinrichtung zu unterziehen ist, in einem Zustand anzuzeigen, in dem ein Bogen einer zum Umdrehen ungeeigneten Sorte identifizierbar ist.
     
    4. Druckvorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 3, weiterhin umfassend:

    eine Leseeinrichtung, die ausgelegt ist, ein Bild eines Dokuments zu lesen,

    wobei die Druckeinrichtung ausgelegt ist, das Bild des durch die Leseeinrichtung gelesenen Dokuments auf den Bogen zu drucken.


     
    5. Druckvorrichtung nach Anspruch 4, wobei in einem Fall, in dem der Bogen, der einem Bilddruck durch die Druckeinrichtung zu unterziehen ist, von einer zum Umdrehen ungeeigneten Sorte ist, die Anzeigeeinrichtung ausgelegt ist, den Bildschirm zum Veranlassen eines Benutzers zum Ändern der Sorte Bogen, die einem Drucken durch die Druckeinrichtung zu unterziehen ist, anzuzeigen, bevor die Leseeinrichtung mit dem Lesen des Bilds beginnt.
     
    6. Druckvorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 5, wobei die Druckeinrichtung ausgelegt ist, das Bild auf einem Bogen einer über den Bildschirm geänderten Sorte zu drucken.
     
    7. Druckvorrichtung nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 6, wobei die Steuereinrichtung ausgelegt ist, die Druckeinrichtung zu steuern, nicht mit dem Drucken des Bilds zu beginnen, falls die Sorte des dem Bilddrucken durch die Druckeinrichtung zu unterziehende Bogen zum Umdrehen ungeeignet ist.
     
    8. Steuerverfahren zum Steuern einer Druckvorrichtung, wobei das Steuerverfahren umfasst:

    Drucken eines Bilds auf einen Bogen;

    Empfangen einer durch einen Benutzer angegebenen Klammerposition auf dem Bogen, der einem Klammern unterzogen werden soll; und

    Steuern, falls die einem Klammern zu unterziehende empfangene Klammerposition eine erste Position ist, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens nicht umzudrehen, um Klammern an der empfangenen Klammerposition auf dem Bogen durchzuführen, ohne Vorder- und Rückseiten des mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens umzudrehen, und Steuern, falls die empfangene Klammerposition eine zweite Position ist, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und die Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens so umzudrehen, um Klammern an der empfangenen Klammerposition durchzuführen, nachdem die Vorder- und Rückseiten des mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens umgedreht wurden;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das Steuerverfahren weiterhin umfasst:
    Anzeigen eines Bildschirms vor dem Drucken, um den Benutzer zu veranlassen, die Sorte des zum Drucken zu benutzenden Bogens zu ändern, falls die Sorte des dem Bilddrucken zu unterziehenden Bogens zum Umdrehen ungeeignet ist.


     
    9. Steuerverfahren zum Steuern einer Druckvorrichtung, wobei das Steuerverfahren umfasst:

    Drucken eines Bilds auf einen Bogen;

    Empfangen einer durch einen Benutzer angegebenen Klammerposition auf dem Bogen, der einem Klammern unterzogen werden soll; und

    Steuern, falls die empfangene Klammerposition eine erste Position ist, das Bild auf den Bogen zu drucken und Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens nicht umzudrehen, um Klammern an der empfangenen Klammerposition auf dem Bogen durchzuführen, ohne die Vorder- und Rückseiten des mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens umzudrehen, und Steuern, falls die empfangene Klammerposition eine zweite Position ist, die Vorder- und Rückseiten des Bogens so zu bedrucken und umzudrehen, um Klammern an der empfangenen Klammerposition auf dem Bogen nach Umdrehen der Vorder- und Rückseiten des mit dem Bild bedruckten Bogens durchzuführen;

    dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass das Steuerverfahren weiterhin umfasst:
    Anzeigen eines Bildschirms vor dem Drucken zum Veranlassen des Benutzers, die dem Klammern unterzogene Klammerposition zu ändern, falls der dem Bilddruck zu unterziehende Bogen von einer zum Umdrehen ungeeigneten Sorte ist.


     
    10. Programm, das, wenn es durch eine Druckvorrichtung ausgeführt wird, die Druckvorrichtung zum Durchführen eines Verfahrens nach Anspruch 8 veranlasst.
     
    11. Nichtflüchtiges computerlesbares Speichermedium, das ein Computerprogramm nach Anspruch 10 speichert.
     
    12. Programm, das, wenn es durch eine Druckvorrichtung ausgeführt wird, die Druckvorrichtung zum Durchführen eines Verfahrens nach Anspruch 9 veranlasst.
     
    13. Nichtflüchtiges computerlesbares Speichermedium, das ein Computerprogramm nach Anspruch 12 speichert.
     


    Revendications

    1. Appareil d'impression, comprenant :

    un moyen d'impression conçu pour imprimer une image sur une feuille ;

    un moyen de retournement (44) conçu pour retourner la feuille sur laquelle l'image a été imprimée par le moyen d'impression ;

    un moyen de réception (150) conçu pour recevoir une position d'agrafage sur ladite feuille à soumettre à un agrafage désignée par un utilisateur ; et

    un moyen de commande (300) conçu, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception est une première position, pour commander le moyen d'impression et le moyen de retournement pour imprimer l'image sur la feuille et ne pas retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception sans retourner la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée par le moyen d'impression, et, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception est une seconde position, pour commander le moyen d'impression et le moyen de retournement pour imprimer l'image sur la feuille et retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage sur la feuille reçue par le moyen de réception après retournement de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée par le moyen d'impression ;

    caractérisé en ce que l'appareil d'impression comprend en outre

    un moyen d'affichage (150) conçu, dans un cas où la feuille soumise à une impression d'image par le moyen d'impression est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement, avant l'impression, pour afficher un écran (700) destiné à inviter un utilisateur à modifier le type de feuille à utiliser à des fins d'impression par le moyen d'impression.


     
    2. Appareil d'impression, comprenant :

    un moyen d'impression conçu pour imprimer une image sur une feuille ;

    un moyen de retournement (44) conçu pour retourner la feuille sur laquelle l'image a été imprimée par le moyen d'impression ;

    un moyen de réception conçu pour recevoir une position d'agrafage sur ladite feuille à soumettre à un agrafage désignée par un utilisateur ; et

    un moyen de commande conçu, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception est une première position, pour commander le moyen d'impression et le moyen de retournement pour imprimer l'image sur la feuille et ne pas retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception sans retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée par le moyen d'impression, et, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception est une seconde position, pour commander le moyen d'impression et le moyen de retournement pour imprimer l'image sur la feuille et retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue par le moyen de réception après retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée par le moyen d'impression ;

    caractérisé en ce que l'appareil d'impression comprend en outre

    un moyen d'affichage (150) conçu, dans un cas où la feuille à soumettre à une impression d'image par le moyen d'impression est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement, avant l'impression, pour afficher un écran (700) destiné à inviter un utilisateur à modifier la position d'agrafage à soumettre à un agrafage.


     
    3. Appareil d'impression selon la revendication 1, dans lequel le moyen d'affichage est conçu pour afficher l'écran destiné à inviter un utilisateur à modifier le type de la feuille à soumettre à une impression par le moyen d'impression dans un état permettant d'identifier une feuille d'un type inapproprié à un retournement.
     
    4. Appareil d'impression selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 3, comprenant en outre
    un moyen de lecture conçu pour lire une image d'un document,
    dans lequel le moyen d'impression est conçu pour imprimer, sur la feuille, l'image du document lue par le moyen de lecture.
     
    5. Appareil d'impression selon la revendication 4, dans lequel, dans un cas où la feuille à soumettre à une impression d'image par le moyen d'impression est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement, le moyen d'affichage est conçu pour afficher, avant que le moyen de lecture ne démarre une lecture de l'image, l'écran destiné à inviter un utilisateur à modifier le type de feuille à soumettre à une impression par le moyen d'impression.
     
    6. Appareil d'impression selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 5, dans lequel le moyen d'impression est conçu pour imprimer l'image sur une feuille d'un type modifié par le biais de l'écran.
     
    7. Appareil d'impression selon l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 6, dans lequel le moyen de commande est conçu pour commander le moyen d'impression pour qu'il ne démarre pas l'impression de l'image dans un cas où la feuille à soumettre à une impression d'image par le moyen d'impression est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement.
     
    8. Procédé de commande permettant de commander un appareil d'impression, le procédé de commande comprenant les étapes consistant à :

    imprimer une image sur une feuille ;

    recevoir une position d'agrafage sur la feuille à soumettre à un agrafage désignée par un utilisateur ; et

    commander, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue à soumettre à un agrafage est une première position, l'impression de l'image sur la feuille et le non-retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue sur la feuille sans retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée, et, commander, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue est une seconde position, l'impression de l'image sur la feuille et le retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue après retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée ;

    caractérisé en ce que le procédé de commande comprend en outre l'étape consistant à

    afficher, dans un cas où le type de la feuille à soumettre à une impression d'image est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement, avant l'impression, un écran destiné à inviter l'utilisateur à modifier le type de la feuille à utiliser à des fins d'impression.


     
    9. Procédé de commande permettant de commander un appareil d'impression, le procédé de commande comprenant les étapes consistant à :

    imprimer une image sur une feuille ;

    recevoir une position d'agrafage sur la feuille à soumettre à un agrafage désignée par un utilisateur ; et

    commander, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue est une première position, l'impression de l'image sur la feuille et le non-retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue sur la feuille sans retourner les côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée, et, commander, dans un cas où la position d'agrafage reçue est une seconde position, l'impression de l'image sur la feuille et le retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille de façon à effectuer un agrafage au niveau de la position d'agrafage reçue sur la feuille après retournement des côtés recto et verso de la feuille sur laquelle l'image est imprimée ;

    caractérisé en ce que le procédé de commande comprend en outre l'étape consistant à

    afficher, dans un cas où le type de la feuille à soumettre à une impression d'image est d'un type inapproprié à un retournement, avant l'impression, un écran destiné à inviter l'utilisateur à modifier la position d'agrafage soumise à un agrafage.


     
    10. Programme qui, lorsqu'il est exécuté par un appareil d'impression, amène appareil d'impression à mettre en œuvre un procédé selon la revendication 8.
     
    11. Support de stockage non transitoire lisible par ordinateur contenant en mémoire un programme informatique selon la revendication 10.
     
    12. Programme qui, lorsqu'il est exécuté par un appareil d'impression, amène l'appareil d'impression à mettre en œuvre un procédé selon la revendication 9.
     
    13. Support de stockage non transitoire lisible par ordinateur contenant en mémoire un programme informatique selon la revendication 12.
     




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    Cited references

    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description