5.6. Troubleshooting Printer Problems

Printers are wonderful devices that we depend on day in and day out as we prepare, conduct, and report on our business. But one of the major downfalls of a world that depends on printers is that they never seem to work!

You discover a number of general troubleshooting guidelines in the sections that follow to help you troubleshoot printer problems. You also find out about a few specific problems with each type of printer.

5.6.1. Check the simple stuff first

The first thing you want to do when you cannot print is to verify the simple stuff. The following is a list of simple things to check on the printer:

  1. Connection check: The first thing you want to verify is that the printer is physically connected to the computer or network.

    • USB: If you have a USB printer, verify that the USB cable is connected to both the printer and the computer.

    • Network: If the printer has a network card, verify that the network cable connects the printer to the network properly. After you verify that the network card is connected, you might want to check that the printer has an IP address by printing out the configuration of the printer.

  2. Visual indicators: After you checked the physical connection, look at the visual indicators on the printer to verify that it is powered-on. Make sure that you can see the online lamp that indicates that the printer is ready for use.

  3. Error codes: While looking at the visual indicators on the printer, look at the printer for any error codes ...

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