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Old 02-06-2009, 08:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Printer printing random characters

My dad has a HP Deskjet 842c printer that randomly keeps printing random characters and can not get it to stop. Even if I unplug it, it will continue to do this after it is plugged back in. Then for whatever reason, it will start printing normal again.

This doesn't happen that often, just out of the blue it will start acting up. I have tried deleting the printer but the printer icon does not disappear. Is there another way to uninstall the printer like under device manager?

Could this problem have to do with the parallel port connection?
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Old 02-06-2009, 08:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Printer printing random characters

the printer should not show in device manager.

try restarting the print spooler and then deleting.
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Printer printing random characters

Ensure you have the proper driver too. Shut off the computer, turn on the computer w/o the printer plugged in, then delete the driver in the control pannel (printer and faxes).

At that point install the proper driver for the laptop then plug the laptop in and turn it on.

I realize you may know all the necessary steps, but in my experience random printing w/o cause is a bad driver (could have become corrupt so needs to be reinstalled).
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Printer printing random characters

I have got it working now. I was able to delete it then I let Windows XP recognize and install it.

One thing I don't understand is when it prints random characters, even if the printer is unplugged for a while, when it is plugged back in, it still continues. Why?

How do you restart the print spooler?
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Printer printing random characters

Quote:
Originally Posted by memory View Post
I have got it working now. I was able to delete it then I let Windows XP recognize and install it.

One thing I don't understand is when it prints random characters, even if the printer is unplugged for a while, when it is plugged back in, it still continues. Why?

How do you restart the print spooler?
This is happening because printers have their own internal memory and in some cases they don't get erased from being unplugged, the best way to do it is to unplug it and hold the power button down for like 10 seconds, this should completely reset and empty any on-board memory that might retain information (it is a rare thing but its happened to me several times with clients)

And if it is indeed the spooler than to restart it you need to do Start-Run-services.msc-press enter and in that list select Print Spooler and select Restart.

Alternatively you could press Windows Key-R and type "net stop spooler" and then open Run (Windows Key -R) again and type "net start spooler" and that restarts the windows print spooler.
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