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Cannot install a LaserJet 4 printer to my new Windows 8.1 Computer.


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#1 McGyver_

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Posted 02 October 2014 - 03:17 PM

I need help getting my HP Laserjet 4 printer to work with my new Dell 3646 desktop with Windows 8.1.  The printer has been my workhorse for many years and I don't want to give it up.  I bought a cable with a Centronics parallel connector on one end and USB on the other and used it to connect the printer to a USB 20 port.  The computer won't print to it, of course, because the printer driver i used before was on the dead computer that I replaced with this new Dell.  I ran the HP Printer Installation Wizard, but it stops because it cannot locate the printer.  HP Support doesn't have any driver download for this model printer.

 

  So i guess i need to find a source for the driver and advice on where to put the driver and advice on what to do after that.  Please advise.


Edited by Orange Blossom, 02 October 2014 - 03:19 PM.
Moved to External Hardware. ~ OB


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#2 McGyver_

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Posted 02 October 2014 - 03:20 PM

Oops.  Sorry, that was posted to the wrong forum.  I'll go put it the right place now.



#3 JohnC_21

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Posted 02 October 2014 - 03:53 PM

The drive is obtained from Windows Update. See here. Check footnotes 2,12,18



#4 McGyver_

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Posted 03 October 2014 - 04:00 PM

I got the driver, after several hours of work.  Thanks for the good start.  Now I am trying to learn about "staging the drivers for PnP installation."  It's tough sledding.  I am still not confident that Windows 8.1 will work with my ancient LaserJet 4.  But I won't give up until I have proof that it won't work.  Meanwhile, if anyone knows a shorter route for installation, or if you think I am blundering down the wrong road, please advise.



#5 ElfBane

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Posted 04 October 2014 - 04:33 AM

Well, this is a pretty big work-around, but it should do the trick... create a VM with the last OS the printer worked for. You'll need the driver of course.



#6 McGyver_

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Posted 06 October 2014 - 04:42 PM

Good progress.  I got the printer installed by using Windows Update to find the driver, as John C suggested.  But I have not succeeded in making the printer print.  The installation program got though the steps, to:

"You’ve successfully added HP LaserJet 4

Set as the default printer [checked]

Print a test page [clicked]]

A test page has been sent to your printer…Use the printer troubleshooter if the test page does not print correctly."

 

The test page did not print. I tried printing through Word and Notepad, but nothing prints.  The printer has paper.  The power light and the online lights are on.  The control panel printer screen shows the documents with the status: "error-printing."

 

I tried the control panel Troubleshooter.  It says: "Troubleshooting couldn't identify the problem."  Neither can I.  The operating system is Windows 8.1

 

I need one more good idea.



#7 JohnC_21

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Posted 06 October 2014 - 04:48 PM

How is the printer connected to the computer?



#8 McGyver_

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Posted 07 October 2014 - 02:44 PM

The printer is connected by a cable which has a USB connector on the computer end and a Centronics connector on the printer end.  I tried to print connected to each of the five USB ports.  Each time, I deleted the pending print from the control panel printer status screen, turned off the printer, connected the cable to a different USB port, turned the printer power back on, tried to print a document.  Each time I got the same error.  The USB port was identified by me as USB000 because the printer installation program would not proceed until I entered the port number.  I couldn't find any way to determine what numbers were assigned to each port, so I chose the lowest number.  That's why I tried them all.  One of them must be USB000.



#9 JohnC_21

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Posted 07 October 2014 - 05:58 PM

Some people say they got it to work by disabling Bi-Directional support. See this Microsoft thread. Do you have an option of USB001? What is the make of the adapter?



#10 McGyver_

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 10:04 AM

The printer cable is: Shaxon USB to Centronics Pararallel USBACN36MM06F-B UPC: 803020012799.

I bought it from Frys electronics.

 

The installation wizard gave me a list of USB ports.  USB001 was listed.  I don't know how else to change my choice of ports so I will re-run the installation program and make the change.  



#11 McGyver_

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 04:36 PM

Solved.  One of your suggestions worked.  Thanks for the help, John C.
Here is the edited version of the procedure that worked:

 

How to install a LaserJet 4 printer to a Windows 8.1 Computer
Buy a cable with a USB male connector on one end and a Centronics male connector on the other.
Connect the printer to an open USB port
Turn on the printer and the computer
Open the Control Panel
Click Hardware and Sound
Click View devices and printers
Click Add a printer
Follow all prompts to get through the installation program
On the last screen before clicking Finish, click Print a test page
If the test page works, click Finish and you're done.
If the test page doesn't print:
Go back to the control panel, devices and printers page
Double click to open HP LaserJet 4
Double click Customize your printer
Click the Ports tab
Uncheck Enable bidirectional support
Go to the General tab and print a test page
If the test page prints, you're done
if the test page does not print, go back to the Ports tab
Check the box next to USB001
Click the General tab
Click Print a test page
If the test page prints, you're done
If the test page does not print, go back to the Ports tab and select a different USB port and try another test page.
Keep selecting ports until you hit on the port where the printer is and the test page will print.



#12 JohnC_21

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Posted 08 October 2014 - 05:09 PM

Thanks for the detailed update. This will definitely help other people with the same problem.






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