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Posted by on in Techie Stuff

Printing addresses labels for a list of people or organizations from a database is a pretty common task.  Often the users doing the printing are not technical and using a variety operating systems and software tools.  Therefore, a good goal for a solution is to provide all the pieces without relying on anything pre-existing on the user's computer.  This goal rules out using Word to do a mail merge which is a pain anyway.  Another useful goal is to provide some flexibility so more tech saavy users can create new or modify existing label templates.

There are some web-based label printing solutions available.  These don't require the installation of software, but saving and sharing the label templates is complicated and getting to data into these solutions is non-trivial or impossible.

General Solution

The approach I settled on uses Avery DesignPro client software which is available for free for Windows and OSX.  DesignPro supports laying out and printing labels on any of the gazillion labels Avery sells.  DesignPro will pull data from dbase (.dbf) files or an ODBC source.

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