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Printing FAQs


Why did the library choose this printing system?

All Northwestern Unviersity libraries chose to use the same print system which allows users to add funds to their account online and pay with their WildCARD. Benefits for users include:

  • A modern card swipe system
  • User funds are tracked through a secure database
  • Follow-me-printing is an option that allows users to release a print job at any public printer. If a printer is broken, just use another one.
  • Wireless printing is available
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How it Works

  1. What is a CPAD?
    A CPAD (or TouchPad) is a touch pad display found at most public printers. They allow users to swipe their WildCARD to display their print jobs, select their print jobs and then release them.
  1. What do I need to do to print today?
    First you need an account in the system. You then need to have funds in your online account to print.
  1. How do I create my account for the system?
    An account is created the first time a user logs onto the Web portal. Once the account is created, funds can be added to the account from a credit or debit card.
  2. Why is there a security code for my WildCARD?
    A four digit pin is required for each user's WildCARD. This is to protect the funds in the users account from being accessed if the WildCARD is lost.  The user will be prompted to set the security code the first time they go to release a print job from a CPAD. The code can also be reset on the web portal pages.
  1. Do I need my WildCARD to print and photocopy?
    The easiest way to print for an NU users is to swipe their WildCARD and pay from their online account. NU users can print without their WildCARD by entering in their NetID and password at a CPAD or a release station. In addition, NU users can use cash to print.
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Transferring Funds and Funding Your Printing Account

  1. How do I add money to my account?
    To add funds to your account you must first log onto the web portal. Then select the link “Add Funds”. This will take the user to a PCI compliant vendor outside NU where they can add funds with either their credit card or debit cards. In addition, users will be able to add funds to their account using cash at a print release station with a coin/cash box.
  2. Can I add money to my account with a credit card or debit card?
    Yes. This is one of the features of the system. NU users can log onto the web portal and add funds with their credit card or debit card accounts via a secure PCI compliant vendor. Funds can be added in $5.00 increments.
  3. What happened to the old system?
    The WildCARD office discontinued the old copy card CashStripe program in June 2012 and users had until January 2013 to transfer funds, after which any funds in the old system were lost.
  4. Will refunds be giving for print jobs that don't print?
    NU-affiliates can request a refund by logging in to their NUPrint Web Account ( and selecting "Recent Print Jobs." From there, find the Status column on the far right. Click "Request Refund" and fill out the form. A staff member will respond within 24 hours. Refunds will be added as NUPrint funds.
    Alternatively, talk to a library staff member about re-printing a job, if necessary.
  5. Will refunds be given for unused funds when I leave Northwestern University or graduate?
    No refunds will be given. We advise you to add the bare minimum you need as you approach graduation or your departure from Northwestern.
  6. Where do I put money on a card for printing?
    Funds for printing can now be added directly into an online account for each user based on their NetID. This is done using the web portal at NU Print.
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Printing from Non-Library Computers

  1. Can I print from my laptop?
    Yes!  One of the great improvements in this system is the ability to print from mobile devices and laptops.
  1. How do I print from my laptop?
    To print from a laptop, or remotely from outside the library, an NU user must first log onto the NU Print web portal. Upload the document to be printed to the server. Then the user can go to any library printer to release their job.
  2. Can I send a print job from outside the library?
    Yes. Simply log onto the web portal and upload your print job there.
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The Web Portal

  1. What is the purpose of the NU Print web portal?
    The purpose of the NU Print web portal is first to allow each NU user to view their online account and to add money to their account. They will also be able to view previous print jobs, how much they have spent on printing, their carbon footprint, and to upload print jobs remotely to print at the library.
    Access the NU Print web portal now.
  2. What else can I do on the web portal?
    Users can review past print jobs, view current unreleased print jobs, review their carbon footprint, upload a print job remotely to release in the library, and check their account balance.
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Guest and Cash Printing

  1. Why do some printers have coin boxes?
    The printer in the LRC accepts coins for FSM affiliates without NetIDs. WildCARDs can also print there.
  2. How will guests print?
    Guests will print using cash.
  3. Can guests get an account in the new system?
    Guest users cannot at this time get accounts in the new print management system. This is because the system is dependent on a user having a NU WildCARD and NetID.
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Updated: October 21st, 2013 08:56