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Printer Drivers for Vista

    Question

  • Anyone had any luck getting HP printer drivers for Vista 32-bit to install on their WHS?

     

    I have an HP 5150 and the driver pack from HP only goes up to Win2k3 and XP. The driver download for Vista is different and will only install on a Vista box.

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 1:04 AM

Answers

  • I'm the tech in charge of the print server where I work and I think I have a trick to help you with this one.

    Your initial thought was a good one; install the Vista driver on the server. I've done this with a dozen or so LaserJet drivers on our print server at work and they've worked fine as Point-and-Print drivers for both XP and Vista clients. However, this driver is different. I've had a play, and you're right, the driver simply refuses to install on WHS, even when you manually extract the files and try to add it through the Add Printer wizard. This is unusual, and not typical of the other HP drivers I've used. However, there is a crafty trick to work around this problem.

    Install the Vista driver on your Vista machine using the installer. Then, set up the shared printer on the server using the normal Server 2003 or XP driver.

    Now, here's the trick:
    1. Start the Add Printer wizard on your Vista box.
    2. Choose to add a local printer. Click Next.
    3. Choose 'Create a new port' and select 'Local port' from the drop-down. Click Next.
    4. In the box that appears asking for the port name, type \\servername\sharename, substituting the obvious values for your shared printer on your WHS. Ignore the voice in your head telling you that this is crazy and can't possibly work. Click OK.
    5. Browse through the plethora of drivers you are now presented with and pick the newly-installed 5150 driver. Click Next and finish the rest of the wizard as normal.
    6. Scoff at beating HP's indifference toward Point-and-Print users, and vow only to buy Canon in future (this step is optional).
    Yes, it seems crazy, but it actually does work - the underlying file system can treat any UNC path as a destination to send data to as if it was an LPT or COM port, and it will completely bypass the driver you've installed on the server. On high-end printers such as the HP 4250 you can even send firmware upgrades over the network by issuing the command copy /b firmware.bin > \\servername\sharename at the command prompt (In fact in some cases it's the preferred method).

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 5:40 PM

All replies

  • You should be using the Win2k3 drivers, as that's what WHS is based on; some people have successfully installed XP drivers. But don't try to install Vista drivers, they are completetely wrong.
    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 2:15 AM
  • I was not very clear with my initial post.

     

    My network currently consists of a one Vista Business 32-bit machine, two XP 32-bit machines and my WHS. The HP 5150 printer is connected to the WHS via USB, and has drivers for 98, NT, Win2k, XP and 2k3. Both XP machines can connect to the shared printer. The Vista box cannot. The WHS box does not have any print drivers for Vista, and I'm wondering if there isn't some way to add Vista support on the sly.

     

    I've downloaded the Vista driver pack for my printer from HP, though installing it on the Vista machine was of no help (not that I thought it would work wonders, but at that point I was grasping at straws). I'm now wondering if there isn't a way to copy those drivers to my WHS such that I would be able to connect to the shared printer. I can't think of a way to make that work.

     

    At this point, I really think I am stuck waiting for HP to release a better driver pack, but maybe there is another way.

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 3:04 PM
  • I'm the tech in charge of the print server where I work and I think I have a trick to help you with this one.

    Your initial thought was a good one; install the Vista driver on the server. I've done this with a dozen or so LaserJet drivers on our print server at work and they've worked fine as Point-and-Print drivers for both XP and Vista clients. However, this driver is different. I've had a play, and you're right, the driver simply refuses to install on WHS, even when you manually extract the files and try to add it through the Add Printer wizard. This is unusual, and not typical of the other HP drivers I've used. However, there is a crafty trick to work around this problem.

    Install the Vista driver on your Vista machine using the installer. Then, set up the shared printer on the server using the normal Server 2003 or XP driver.

    Now, here's the trick:
    1. Start the Add Printer wizard on your Vista box.
    2. Choose to add a local printer. Click Next.
    3. Choose 'Create a new port' and select 'Local port' from the drop-down. Click Next.
    4. In the box that appears asking for the port name, type \\servername\sharename, substituting the obvious values for your shared printer on your WHS. Ignore the voice in your head telling you that this is crazy and can't possibly work. Click OK.
    5. Browse through the plethora of drivers you are now presented with and pick the newly-installed 5150 driver. Click Next and finish the rest of the wizard as normal.
    6. Scoff at beating HP's indifference toward Point-and-Print users, and vow only to buy Canon in future (this step is optional).
    Yes, it seems crazy, but it actually does work - the underlying file system can treat any UNC path as a destination to send data to as if it was an LPT or COM port, and it will completely bypass the driver you've installed on the server. On high-end printers such as the HP 4250 you can even send firmware upgrades over the network by issuing the command copy /b firmware.bin > \\servername\sharename at the command prompt (In fact in some cases it's the preferred method).

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 5:40 PM
  • Jay,

    That correct, strange tho, but that how I install my 2 lan HP officejet in the past, the wizard need to start as "local printer" not "lan printer", in fact, that issue always you find it in their update doc, or last minutes to red txt file.

    Your how too is not "sound crazy", that how HP lan printer work. That in the old days tho, I do not use HP printer anymore.
    • Proposed as answer by bpierce2400 Monday, March 23, 2009 11:25 PM
    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 6:02 PM
  • Yes, you're right, direct network printers do generally install in the "Add local printer" section, but they don't use the basic "Local Port", they use "Standard TCP/IP Port" or a proprietary variant of this such as "HP JetDirect Port" or something similar. It's the use of the UNC path in the local port name that is the unusual step here.
    Wednesday, July 04, 2007 7:53 PM
  • Jay,

     

    Thanks for your advice, it worked like a charm.

     

    +1 for you dude.

    Thursday, July 05, 2007 2:28 AM
  • Crazy stuff, but has worked for ages. Used something similar back when I had the printer on my XP machine and needed to get printing support for an Win98 (or was it ME?) machine.
    Thursday, July 05, 2007 8:28 AM
  • I just found this post after trying to install my printer on a Vista 64bit machine.  Worked like a charm as well!!!
    Monday, September 01, 2008 11:18 PM
  • This is unbelievable, Thank you soooo much I spent 6 hours on this just to get a Test Page. This really does work and should be posted on the Windows Home server as well. This also works for Vista Ultimate X64 and works with Windows Home and XP mixed networks

    Monday, March 23, 2009 11:25 PM
  • After reading through this post, and many others, I really thought I would have a fixed printer... but NOOOOOOO!

    Printing from a networked workstation to the WHS installed printer simply will NOT print.  I can get test prints all day long if I run them from the WHS...  From any workstation, even following this process outlined here, it will not work.

    Frustrating...

    Open to suggestions.
    Thursday, September 03, 2009 10:40 PM
  • This is a serious suggestion:

    Given that Windows Home Server is not intended for use as a print server, and such use is unsupported by Microsoft, you may want to consider an inexpensive network capable multifunction.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, September 04, 2009 3:39 PM
    Moderator
  • I had a Similar problem with a HP Laserjet 3200 (an old multifunction that just won't die :P).
    I have Windows Home Server and 3 x Windows7 PC's. The Driver for the 3200 installs from Windows Update when connected to a Windows7 PC or connected to the WHS with no probs. But if you try and connect to the same shared printer on WHS from a Windows7 PC it fails to download the driver from Windows Update.
    So as a work around I connect the Printer to a Windows7 PC and share it, connect to it from the other Windows7 PC's and installs with no problem.
    Then before moving the printer back to the WHS (because these options sometimes can't be changed if the printer is not present) I use similar to Jay's suggestion and change the port on all PC's to a local port using path \\SERVER\HP3200 (HP3200 being the share name i will give it on the server).
    Then connect the printer to WHS and let Windows Update do its job and then share the printer as HP3200.
    Worked fine for me, the day that WHS freaks out about being a print server I will look at a better solution :P 
    Saturday, September 05, 2009 4:49 AM
  • Hi Jay, your the man, wasted ages trying to install 64 bit driverson a 32 bit server and then I find your post and it takes me 5min, thanks very much!  Peter
    Thursday, October 01, 2009 10:01 PM
  • EXCELLENT !!! It worked absolutelly fine. I have tried several other options, and this was by far the easiest and fastest - and bz the way the only one that worked ;-)

    You are great!
    Thursday, October 29, 2009 6:36 PM
  • I read your Printer Driver for Vista with great interest.  Let me tell you my problem and see if you can somehow come up with a way for me to continue to use my Minolta printer.

    Recently I purchased an Acer with an AMD 4X processor chip and Windows 7.  It was a good price and I love it.  When I went to install a printer driver for my Minolta QMS magicolor 2200 Desklaser, it didn't work.  My Windows 7 is a 64 bit system.  I called Minolta and there is no plans for coming up with a 64 bit driver.  I payed $1200 for this printer many years ago and love it.  It work fine on my Toshiba laptop with Windows XP.  I only had to purchase a special cable that converts parallel to USB.  THe Acer machine also only has USB ports.  No parallel printer port.

    Your response seemed to be centered around Vista and networks.  I have neither, only Windows 7.  Can you somehow dream up a way for me to use this printer on my new machine?

    Thanks, John
    Tuesday, December 01, 2009 3:44 AM
  • If there's no 64 bit driver and Minolta isn't supporting the printer any more, you're probably out of luck. Nobody writes third party drivers for antique printers (and at 8+ years old, it qualifies, I'm afraid).
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, December 01, 2009 12:03 PM
    Moderator