Best Way to Print Websites - gHacks Tech News

Best Way to Print Websites

Printing websites is not as easy as it sounds. It is surely possible to simply hit the CTRL + P shortcut and hope that all relevant information will be on the printout which is usually not the case because menus and advertisement increase the width of printouts of many websites and add unnecessary information to it.

A better way to print websites is to remove all unnecessary elements from that website before you send it to your printer. This can be done easily with two Firefox extensions that I reviewed previously.

Elements refers to any page item that is displayed on the page including images, menus, background colors, advertisement and all text.

Most of the time text and maybe images related to that article are all that is needed in the printout. Add to that the page url for reference and you are good to go most of the time.

Both Firefox extensions - Nuke Anything Enhanced and Aardvark - can remove elements on a website to prepare it for printing.

Aardvark offers several additional features that I will talk about later. Lets take a look at one of the pages at Ghacks and how it looks like if you print it if you do not remove any elements on that page.

ghacks default print view

All elements such as advertisement, the top and left menu, title, tags and so on are visible and will also be visible on the printout. Not a nice printout if you only want the text and title of the article.

Nuke Anything Enhanced:

ghacks nuke anything

The same article after removing all possible elements with Nuke Anything enhanced. As you can see all menus and adds have been removed from the article leaving only the text, title and images in place. The place however is exactly the same position as before which means that the whitespace where the ads have been is not used and leaves a large white area on the printout.

Aardvark:

ghacks aardvark

This one removes the same elements that Nuke Anything Enhanced has removed with the difference that that elements are moved up to make use of the whitespace that the removal of elements on the page created. This is of course a far better result and will lead to a better - more readable - printout.

It was also easier to remove the elements with Aardvark because it displays a red square around the selected element making it easier to decided whether to remove that element or not.

Conclusion:

The best way to print websites is to use Firefox with the Aardvark extension. If you do print a lot you should definitely consider installing that extension.

Summary
Best Way to Print Websites
Article Name
Best Way to Print Websites
Description
Find out how to remove page elements such as menus, headers or advertisement before you print a page to save printer ink, paper and make printouts more readable.
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    Comments

    1. yair said on September 15, 2007 at 6:38 pm
      Reply

      aardvark now as a bookmarklet!
      http://karmatics.com/aardvark/bookmarklet.html

    2. OLIRC said on September 16, 2007 at 6:02 am
      Reply

      Great extension! Don’t to complicated to learn either so in a day or two i can use it with no hassle.

    3. Just another happy visitor said on April 7, 2008 at 7:26 pm
      Reply

      I was looking for a way to print webpages easily. Thank alot for this information.

    4. Martin Ramsch said on October 30, 2011 at 1:10 pm
      Reply

      Successor in spirit of Aardvark is HackTheWeb.

      Though also mentioned in the Related Articles section, another direct link might be useful:
      https://www.ghacks.net/2011/10/24/hack-the-web-remove-elements-before-printing-in-firefox/

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