Unfortunately, the printer doesn't have a USB port. I've connected from a USB port on the computer to the parallel port on the printer. As someone stated earlier in a related thread: this printer is from 1999, dude!
But it works and the ink isn't too expensive, relatively... do you think the problem could be the specific parallel to USB cable? It's a Belkin that I got from Staples.
at the end it doesn't really matter which way around. As ijack stated Windows 7 should have the correct driver support for your printer. I don't think that the cable itself is physically broken, but it might interfere with the way the printer can communicate with the software.
So the best check would be to have either a generic parallel cable or generic USB connection....
to be honest...my advive would be to buy a USB printer, considering that they are as cheap as chips this shouldn't break the bank.
Otherwise there are a lot of threads in other forums about "USB to parallel printer install" but a lot of them don't seem to have happy endings...(at least the ones I could find).