Printing from Vista.. Finally!

I reloaded my PC and made the move to Vista a few weeks back. Overall, I’m pleased with the OS. Still have several apps to install and data files to move around, but so far so good.

The only real problem I ran into was printing. We have a HP Color LaserJet 2600n on our home network. Vista didn’t include any drivers for the printer, so I checked the HP web site. All I found was a link that said they hope to have drivers soon. I’ve always been partial to HP’s printers, but their driver support stinks. For whatever reason, HP seems to be incapable of developing working drivers for their hardware on a timely basis when new operating systems are released. I remember waiting months for XP drivers back when it made its debut, and so far their Vista performance is more of the same.

Hey HP, how long was Vista in beta? How long have you had it in your labs? Maybe you need to rethink your driver model for your hardware and try and standardize a bit so you don’t have to rewrite every last driver.

I wound up using the XP driver, which crashed the print spooler on install, but after restarting the service and cancelling the printer setup, I found a new printer listed on my system. It even printed my documents… over and over and over. No matter how many copies I asked for, it insisted on giving me as many copies as the printer had paper.

After a couple weeks of forwarding documents to Kristin to print, I finally found a workaround someone posted on the HP forums. Apparently the problem only occurs for standard users. If you print as an administrator, it works normally. I’ve been running as a standard user, practicing safe computing and all that, but finally had to switch to being an administrator today.