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Printer will not print: tried all the common tricks

Last response: in Windows 7
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November 26, 2012 7:33:24 PM

Hello,

I know that this issue is as common as they come, but my computer will not print to any printer. I am currently running Windows 7 on my computer. I have tried printing on 3 different printers and nothing works. I have uninstalled drivers, reinstalled them. I have also checked to see if the print spooler service is working, and it is. It does not even print a test page when I try to do so. Also, when trying to print through Firefox, I get an error message saying, "An unknown error has occurred while printing".

I have looked at multiple forums trying to figure out what is going on, and so far I haven't found a solution that works. Can anyone give me some advice for what to do?
a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 7:46:10 PM

Hi :) 

You DID install the printers WITHOUT them being connected by USB and ONLY connected them WHEN the software told you to ???

All the best Brett :) 
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 7:54:57 PM

Networked printers? Or local printers?

If it's a local printer you can try clearing the printer folder. IT's located at C: /windows/system32/spool/printer
If there is anything in that folder delete them. Then go to computer management, Services, and restart the print spooler.

This happens on some of our locals printers with PDF's specifically. The quick resolution to fix this is to always print pdfs as an image. It has something to do with the printer not being "smart" enough to print the special instructions sometimes included in pdf files.

Dunno if im way way off here or not but hope it helps!
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November 26, 2012 7:57:13 PM

Brett928S2 said:
Hi :) 

You DID install the printers WITHOUT them being connected by USB and ONLY connected them WHEN the software told you to ???

All the best Brett :) 



The only way to install the driver is through the windows 7 driver service. The problem here is that I have tried to print on 3 different printers and none of them work. This leads me to believe that it is a windows issue, not an individual driver or printer issue. Am I right to assume this?
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November 26, 2012 8:01:38 PM

unoriginal1 said:
Networked printers? Or local printers?

If it's a local printer you can try clearing the printer folder. IT's located at C: /windows/system32/spool/printer
If there is anything in that folder delete them. Then go to computer management, Services, and restart the print spooler.

This happens on some of our locals printers with PDF's specifically. The quick resolution to fix this is to always print pdfs as an image. It has something to do with the printer not being "smart" enough to print the special instructions sometimes included in pdf files.

Dunno if im way way off here or not but hope it helps!



Thanks for the quick response. Unfortunately, that did not work. Do you know of anything else it might be?
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November 26, 2012 8:02:54 PM

unoriginal1 said:
Networked printers? Or local printers?

If it's a local printer you can try clearing the printer folder. IT's located at C: /windows/system32/spool/printer
If there is anything in that folder delete them. Then go to computer management, Services, and restart the print spooler.

This happens on some of our locals printers with PDF's specifically. The quick resolution to fix this is to always print pdfs as an image. It has something to do with the printer not being "smart" enough to print the special instructions sometimes included in pdf files.

Dunno if im way way off here or not but hope it helps!



Also, it is a local printer, connected by a USB cable.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 8:03:57 PM

questsword said:
The only way to install the driver is through the windows 7 driver service. The problem here is that I have tried to print on 3 different printers and none of them work. This leads me to believe that it is a windows issue, not an individual driver or printer issue. Am I right to assume this?



Hi :) 

Lol..no...no wonder they are NOT working....

Do this...

Put in printer disc ...WITHOUT the printer CONNECTED and follow the softwares instructions....do NOT connect the printer until the software TELLS YOU TO....

All the best Brett :) 
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November 26, 2012 8:08:53 PM

Brett928S2 said:
Hi :) 

Lol..no...no wonder they are NOT working....

Do this...

Put in printer disc ...WITHOUT the printer CONNECTED and follow the softwares instructions....do NOT connect the printer until the software TELLS YOU TO....

All the best Brett :) 



I do not have discs for the printers. All drivers are downloaded using Microsoft's driver download software, which is activated when you plug a usb cord from the printer into the computer. I have printed using all 3 of the printers using this computer previously. One day, they just stopped working. I think I should have mentioned this fact previously.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 8:18:17 PM

Agree with Brett, you need to uninstall the printers, download the correct drivers from the printer manufacturer (not Microsoft), and reinstall them.
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November 26, 2012 8:27:45 PM

J_E_D_70 said:
Agree with Brett, you need to uninstall the printers, download the correct drivers from the printer manufacturer (not Microsoft), and reinstall them.



The printers that I am using are HPs. Their web site states:

"Step one: Install the in-OS driver
Follow these steps to install the basic driver in Windows 7.

Turn the product on.
Connect the USB cable to the product, and then to the computer.
Windows 7 detects the hardware and automatically installs the correct driver. A notification window displays on your computer to let you know when installation is complete."

There is no driver to download from the manufacturer (HP) except through windows. They do not support a manual install of the driver. They want you to do it through Windows.

Also, what does this have to do with the problem? I can understand if it does not work for one printer. A driver issue makes sense here. However, it has to be something else if it happens with three printers simultaneously. Can it be something other than a driver issue?


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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 8:34:46 PM

Ah, sorry. If they worked before then just stopped, not sure. Did you apply an update to windows that broke the drivers, perhaps?

I know that when I went from XP to 7 it broke my printer's ability to scan and HP didn't offer a fix.
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November 26, 2012 8:44:16 PM

J_E_D_70 said:
Ah, sorry. If they worked before then just stopped, not sure. Did you apply an update to windows that broke the drivers, perhaps?

I know that when I went from XP to 7 it broke my printer's ability to scan and HP didn't offer a fix.



That is the problem. I don't have an idea of when I lost my ability to print. I haven't tried to print something in a long time. I thank you for your help though. Is there another solution that I could try?
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 8:49:33 PM

Out of barely-useful insight on this one.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:13:12 PM

Hi :) 

We install printers for customers ALL the time in my shops....

DO WHAT I SAY....

UNPLUG PRINTER....

DOWNLOAD DRIVERS AND SOFTWARE (ALL IN ONE) FOR THAT PRINTER FROM MANUFACTURER (HP?)

DOUBLE CLICK THE EXE FILE (WITHOUT PRINTER CONNECTED)

FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS AND CONNECT PRINTER >>> WHEN <<< THE SOFTWARE TELLS YOU...

This is my last post in this thread as you do not seem to be listening...

One last thought...these are NOT ancient printers that do NOT have 7 drivers by any chance ...in which case drop in bin and buy new printers...(as they must be nearly 10 years old)

All the best Brett :) 

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November 26, 2012 9:24:38 PM

Brett928S2 said:
Hi :) 

We install printers for customers ALL the time in my shops....

DO WHAT I SAY....

UNPLUG PRINTER....

DOWNLOAD DRIVERS AND SOFTWARE (ALL IN ONE) FOR THAT PRINTER FROM MANUFACTURER (HP?)

DOUBLE CLICK THE EXE FILE (WITHOUT PRINTER CONNECTED)

FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS AND CONNECT PRINTER >>> WHEN <<< THE SOFTWARE TELLS YOU...

This is my last post in this thread as you do not seem to be listening...

All the best Brett :) 



Brett:

I have listened to what you have said, but I do not think that you are reading what I said before. I'll make a list:

1) I cannot print and have tried on 3 local printers (drivers do not fail for 3 printers simultaneously without an astronomical amount of bad luck)
2) I do not have the actual software that came with the machine
3) When going to HP's Website, they do not have the driver software. They specifically tell you to use Microsoft's driver service. There is no .exe to install.
4) I have already deleted and re-downloaded the drivers multiple times.

Again, this leads me to believe it is an issue with one of the services or maybe I have some Windows files that are corrupted. I know that you are trying to help me. I thank you for that. However, I think I have already explained that I have done everything you have mentioned multiple times and it still does not work. Does anyone have something else I could try?

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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:24:43 PM

Brett928S2 said:
Hi :) 

We install printers for customers ALL the time in my shops....

DO WHAT I SAY....

UNPLUG PRINTER....

DOWNLOAD DRIVERS AND SOFTWARE (ALL IN ONE) FOR THAT PRINTER FROM MANUFACTURER (HP?)

DOUBLE CLICK THE EXE FILE (WITHOUT PRINTER CONNECTED)

FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS AND CONNECT PRINTER >>> WHEN <<< THE SOFTWARE TELLS YOU...

This is my last post in this thread as you do not seem to be listening...

One last thought...these are NOT ancient printers that do NOT have 7 drivers by any chance ...in which case drop in bin and buy new printers...(as they must be nearly 10 years old)

All the best Brett :) 


Uhh, Brett, slow a little. HP does have several printers for which they do not provide direct driver downloads, instead the user is instructed to install the driver via Windows Update.

@questsword: Have you tried changing the driver (via printer properties) to the HP Universal PCL driver? I'm assuming they're laserjets since you haven't identified them by model.
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November 26, 2012 9:27:23 PM

What are the exact make /model of the printers?

Have you tried a different usb port?

Have you tried a different usb cable?

Have you tried the printers on any other laptop / computer to see if they work ok on that?

If the printers are Wifi enabled make sure wifi is turned off as some printers may disable the usb and ethernet connections if Wifi is on.

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November 26, 2012 9:32:09 PM

davedurg09 said:
What are the exact make /model of the printers?

Have you tried a different usb port?

Have you tried a different usb cable?

Have you tried the printers on any other laptop / computer to see if they work ok on that?

If the printers are Wifi enabled make sure wifi is turned off as some printers may disable the usb and ethernet connections if Wifi is on.


@ ex_bubblehead: I have not tried this yet. Could you explain how to do this?

@ davedurg09: They are all HP. Local HP printers. They all work with other machines. They are connected using USB.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:33:44 PM

questsword said:
@ ex_bubblehead: I have not tried this yet. Could you explain how to do this?

@ davedurg09: They are all HP. Local HP printers. They all work with other machines. They are connected using USB.


In order that our advice be completely accurate we need to know the EXACT models. HP is just a company, not a printer.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:35:03 PM

questsword said:
@ ex_bubblehead: I have not tried this yet. Could you explain how to do this?

@ davedurg09: They are all HP. Local HP printers. They all work with other machines. They are connected using USB.



Hi :) 

You seem to be hiding the models....

WHICH MODEL PRINTERS ?????

All the best Brett :) 
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November 26, 2012 9:37:34 PM

ex_bubblehead said:
In order that our advice be completely accurate we need to know the EXACT models. HP is just a company, not a printer.



Printers:

HP Officejet 4315 All in One
HP Officejet Pro 8500
HP Officejet 3150 All in One

Hope this helps solve the problem.
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November 26, 2012 9:39:17 PM

Yes we need to know the make an model which will be written on the actual printer. Also you have not answered my questions. I know the printers are connected via USB but have you tried switching the usb cable to a different usb port on the machine?

Also have you tried a completely different USB cable incase the one you are using is damaged.

Also when you open the start menu and go to Devices and Printers can you see the three printers in there? or any of them.

If so you should be able to see a green tick or red x beside them if there is a problem. You can also right click on the printer and click Troubleshoot to see if windows can fix the problem itself
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:41:36 PM

The cable works with other computers as he said earlier. I don't think it's a hardware issue no offense.

Questsword: Before doing what exbubblehead is going to walk you through. Make sure to remove all instances of the driver from that machine.

USE MMC here is a link with steps if your not sure. (im half thinking a corrupted bit of the old driver is still left) and thats whats been causing it. But we'll see :) 

*edit* If you run into error messages that it can't complete. Stop the spooler uninstall then restart the spooler.
http://theitbros.com/remove-windows-vista7-printer-driv...
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November 26, 2012 9:42:26 PM

davedurg09 said:
Yes we need to know the make an model which will be written on the actual printer. Also you have not answered my questions. I know the printers are connected via USB but have you tried switching the usb cable to a different usb port on the machine?

Also have you tried a completely different USB cable incase the one you are using is damaged.

Also when you open the start menu and go to Devices and Printers can you see the three printers in there? or any of them.

If so you should be able to see a green tick or red x beside them if there is a problem. You can also right click on the printer and click Troubleshoot to see if windows can fix the problem itself



Yes, I have switched the cable to another USB port. Before I cleared out the drivers, all three showed up. They all had green checks next to them. I have already tried the Windows automatic fix. It doesn't work.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:43:02 PM

questsword said:
Printers:

HP Officejet 4315 All in One
HP Officejet Pro 8500
HP Officejet 3150 All in One

Hope this helps solve the problem.


Now that I/we know that these aren't LaserJets then you can ignore the advice to try the Universal PCL driver (Won't work on Officejets)

Is the print spooler service running?
Are there any documents showing in the queues?
Have you cleared all documents from the queues?
What, if any error messages appear when you attempt to print?


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November 26, 2012 9:48:35 PM

ex_bubblehead said:
Now that I/we know that these aren't LaserJets then you can ignore the advice to try the Universal PCL driver (Won't work on Officejets)

Is the print spooler service running?
Are there any documents showing in the queues?
Have you cleared all documents from the queues?
What, if any error messages appear when you attempt to print?



1)Print Spooler is running. When I tried the method that was mentioned by unoriginal1, I cleared everything out of that folder and restarted it.
2 & 3) There should not be any documents in the queues. I don't see any there.
4) The only error that I get is when printing documents from the internet: "an unexpected error has occurred."

@unoriginal1: Thanks for posting that site. I will try this.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:52:20 PM

questsword said:
1)
@unoriginal1: Thanks for posting that site. I will try this.


I have a feeling this may work. Hoping n e how.
It's my last effort without being there to fiddle with it :/ .
Good luck :) .

I made an edit on the post too... if you run into an error that process's are running stop the spooler and try the uninstall again, then restart it and make sure to restart the pc.
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a b $ Windows 7
November 26, 2012 9:55:22 PM

^
Yeah, what he said. Without being able to lay on hands I'm outa ideas.
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November 26, 2012 10:10:43 PM

Are you sure the 3150 is an Officejet ?

1.There is no Officejet 3150 but rather LaserJet 3150 Please confirm this. From what I know, this printer is not Windows 7 compatible.

2. The HP Officejet 4315 All in One drivers can only be found on the Windows 7 OS itself, however there is an update patch you have to install from HP website

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/softwareDownloadInde...

3. Finally the HP Officejet Pro 8500 has wireless capability so i will suggest you install for wireless first, then you should be able to do a USB install on next try, but if you can use wireless, you should do that for now.

I think you should concentrate on the HP Officejet Pro 8500 as that might be easier
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