Zebra ZPL Files Processing

If your business operations include producing shipping labels (e.g., UPS, USPS, FedEx), industrial barcodes, packing slips, or QR-codes for produсt items, FolderMill can help you a lot. With it, you can easily automate printing of ZPL files or convert ZPL to PDF or image files: JPEG, PNG or TIFF. 

FolderMill is usually used for automated office printing (basic office print jobs like invoices, contracts, manuals, or emails). But you can also simplify thermal printing with our software if you use industrial printers of various producers such as Zebra Technologies.

Automated printing of ZPL files in real-time 

FolderMill monitors and instantly processes incoming files which appear in its Hot Folders. You can set up different processing rules – for printing, file conversion, or both at the same time.

Auto printing of Zebra ZPL labels, barcodes, QR-codes

You can set up files processing for a certain Hot Folder. If you want to auto print ZPL files only, you can, for example, filter incoming documents by file extension .zpl (so that only these files will be processed). 

Learn more about filtering incoming files by filename →

ZPL to PDF conversion settings in FolderMill

ZPL settings in FolderMill: size, print density, proxy settings

ZPL dimensions (size)

You can keep the default settings, but if a certain label size is required, you can adjust it using the advanced parameters. To specify label size, add Convert to PDF Action and press Ctrl + Alt + i on your keyboard. Then set the size of output labels by changing the values of lines Zpl_height=152 and Zpl_width=101. The values should be set in millimeters.

ZPL print density (dpmm)

You can also alter print quality by changing the Zpl_dpmm= parameter. It is a specific resolution that matches printhead spacing (often 8 dpmm = ~203 dpi, 12 dpmm =~ 300 dpi, but it may change depending on the printer model). To change print density, you can try these options:

  • 6 dpmm (152 dpi)
  • 8 dpmm (203 dpi)
  • 12 dpmm (300 dpi)
  • 24 dpmm (600 dpi)

Zpl_dpmm=8 is set by default.

ZPL proxy settings

In the FolderMill Control Panel, open Convert to PDF Action. Then Press Ctrl + Alt + i to open the advanced settings. There you'll find lines Zpl_ProxyHost="" and Zpl_ProxyPort=0. You can change them to the needed values.

Print ZPL code directly to label printer

You can print files which contain ZPL commands as plain text without any intermediate processing or rendering. The file extension is not important as long as it is possible to open the file with a text editor; it can be .txt, .zpl, .prn, .ps, etc. To automate ZPL printing via FolderMill, we suggest using a Generic / Text Only printer driver.

Learn how to install Generic Text Printer Driver available in Windows →

Besides, FolderMill can process Printer Command Language files such as PCL and PostScript (PS) files.

What is Zebra ZPL code?

A ZPL file is the printer format for Zebra Printers. It is a small file with markup telling the printer how to visualize a label. It’s basically just a text file containing instructions (ZPL programming language). When we talk about ZPL code or programming language, we mean a page description language by Zebra Technologies, used primarily for labeling applications.

Please note that screenshots in this article are valid for FolderMill version 4.9.