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The Boston Globe to install alfaQuest PrintExpress CPM

Press release from the issuing company

Rolling Meadows, IL September 16, 2002 — The Boston Globe and alfaQuest Technologies have agreed to take system consolidation to a new level by installing a PrintExpress Consolidated Production Management (CPM) system on the same hardware platform as The Globe’s new frontend system. The Globe’s PrintExpress CPM system replaces existing distributed output management equipment as well as several custom software programs developed for the Globe to expedite its Boston and Billerica print site workflows. “Boston is a great addition to our fast-growing base of PrintExpress system customers,” said Dennis Nierman, President of alfaQuest Technologies. “Recent installations like the Dallas Morning News, Tacoma Tribune and The Globe, confirm that we have a system for any size newspaper.” The PrintExpress configuration encompasses two facilities – The Boston Globe offices and its Billerica print site. Dual servers with clustering for automatic fail over will be installed in Boston and an additional server in Billerica will assure business continuance. alfaQuest’s exclusive CPM server configurations allow all software modules to be installed on fault-tolerant, scalable Sun Microsystems platforms. PrintExpress also can be configured in a Windows 2000 environment. This consolidated server philosophy simplifies installation and configuration, as well as reducing ongoing system hardware and software maintenance costs. PrintExpress’ network licensing also allows CPM servers to be configured for automated/manual fail over or, in clusters, for completely automatic fail over. The Boston Globe system will be configured to utilize the same Sun hardware platform as its new CCI Europe editorial pagination system. The alfaQuest consolidated system replaces existing Windows-based output management, spooling, RIPping, remote transmission, ink presetting and proofing systems. The Globe’s PrintExpress system is configured with a suite of PrintExpress consolidated server software modules and includes: MGS3 Workflow Manager Adobe CPSI RIP technology PostScript, TIFF, and PDF workflows PDF Creation and Bitmap Assembler Local and remote network imaging to CTP imagers Network proofing and Bitmap soft proofing Ink presetting PrintExpress is integrated with Boston’s Merlin system to provide soft proofing functionality, as well as its legacy ink presetting system, Atex Classified and Atex Architect. Marks, bar codes, etc. will be applied to pages with the Bitmap Assembler module. The Globe has chosen SunFire 6800s as the hardware platform for its combined alfaQuest and CCI systems. The systems will be clustered for automatic fail over and supports the latest UltraSPARC 3 CPUs. “We selected alfaQuest’s PrintExpress CPM because its flexibile configurations can meet all of our specific local and remote workflow requirements and its consolidated system approach and fault tolerance provide the industrial-strength performance and dependability necessary for The Boston Globe’s high volume, quality production.” said Robert Sylvester, Director/IT, of The Boston Globe. The Consolidated Production Management server replaces distributed, standalone software Packages and their related workstations/servers. In most cases of PrintExpress CPM eliminates many standalone computers, as well as single-task systems that provide output management, remote transmission, soft proofing, ink presetting, and imposition. Other alfaQuest CPM server sites include: Cedar Rapids Gazette, Columbus Dispatch, Greensboro News & Record, Las Vegas Review-Journal, Long Island Newsday, New York Post, New York Times, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Raleigh News & Observer, San Francisco Newspaper Agency and the Youngstown Vindicator. PrintExpress is designed from the ground up to allow systems to meet exact needs. It forms a distributed client/server output management system using standard platforms and standard TCP/IP communication protocols. Each software module provides a specific function and forms an interlocking building block from which the system is built. The typical system would comprise of a number of modules providing functions such as RIPping, Remote Printing, Page Pairing, Proofing and Page Tracking. The final system can be as large or as small as needed simply by spreading the modules across as many platforms at as many locations as needed. Systems can be expanded or modified in function thanks to the modular approach. For maximum performance and reliability PrintExpress Servers run on SUN MicroSystems platforms with the SUN Solaris operating system as well as NT platforms. Automatic fail over and disaster recovery can be provided to ensure full system integrity in the event of a hardware failure. A floating license system allows the modules to run on any platform on the system.

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