Atry-fax



  • My Printers and Faxes dialog box is getting very artistic...



    [img]http://img411.imageshack.us/img411/4127/faxed.jpg[/img]



  • What the Fax?



  • Ahh... the joys of HP printer software. I think they hire high school kids, give them Teach yourself C++ in 24 Hours, and turn them loose.



  • @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    Ahh... the joys of HP printer software. I think they hire high school kids, give them Teach yourself C++ in 24 Hours, and turn them loose.

     

    Some of the best printers I've ever used were HPs.  But their software is so godawful it makes it better in many ways to put up with an inferior printer.



  • @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    Ahh... the joys of HP printer software. I think they hire high school kids, give them Teach yourself C++ in 24 Hours, and turn them loose.

    Too right. I used to have an HP all-in-one that printed OK, but the scan software invariably crashed after 3 or 4 pages of a multipage document - not helpful when trying to make a single PDF. I replaced it with an Epson, which quite happily scans 100 pages at one go.

    And why do they need to copy the entire install disc to RAM before it's usable ?



  • I think that HP software is Moore's law compliant. For each new computer generation there is a new generation of HP printer software that will invariably slow the computer down to a crawl. I believe at this point they just fill the driver downloads with "HA HA I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU DOWNLOADED THIS" repeated to fill the 400 MB that make up modern HP printer drivers, and use your use your CPU's cycles as part of a diabolical AI that writes the next version of HP's printer software.



    HP makes good printers, but avoid their software at all costs.



  •  Their scanner "software" consists of an IE popup window and HTML and JS.

    Canon did a bang-up job with my scanner, though. I'm very pleased.



  • @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    Ahh... the joys of HP printer software. I think they hire high school kids, give them Teach yourself C++ in 24 Hours, and turn them loose.
    Wrong.  They don't even give them a book.  They just hire people whose resumés claim experience in C++... or C... or have the letter 'c' somewhere on the page.



  • Ah the wonders of printer software. This is why I don't install 3rd party driver peripherals on my machine unless they're for my video card.



  • @bstorer said:

    @Ex-Navy Dude said:

    Ahh... the joys of HP printer software. I think they hire high school kids, give them Teach yourself C++ in 24 Hours, and turn them loose.
    Wrong.  They don't even give them a book.  They just hire people whose resumés claim experience in C++... or C... or have the letter 'c' somewhere on the page.

    I thought they hired "C programmers" who had "C is for Cookie" in their resume. It seems I'm not that far off...



  • I don't understand the people who are saying HP's printers themselves are good. I've had a couple and the hardware was no better. Mixing all the coloured ink to make (muddy) black, simply refusing to turn on and/or actually print, not taking in paper or taking in several sheets at once, etc. Then one paper jam and the thing's a brick because it's riveted together and there's just no way to pull it out of there.



    The software has always been absolutely terrible, but it used to be possible to just disable autorun, point the hardware wizard at the disc, and with a bit of luck it'd find the driver and just install that without the 600MB of bloat. Not anymore.



    Then there's Lexmark, whose even more bloated software just takes right over the system and breaks everything. Only time I've ever had to return a piece of perfectly good hardware because of the shitty software that comes with it. Not only could I not print, a bunch of other stuff broke as well. I had to do a system restore to get it back to a usable state.



    Canon makes a damn fine printer, and amazingly enough their drivers are just drivers without all that crap attached. Good luck finding Linux drivers though.



  • I found out something fun about some HP printers recently.

    Apparently, I can't use my network-shared HP Deskjet 5650 in Vista. 
    You see, Vista only supports this printer using a generic driver when
    connecting via USB or parallel cable.

    In other words, if I want
    to print in Vista using my HP Deskjet 5650, I have to be directly
    connected to it.  I can't set it up on a server - either Linux or
    Windows - and share it with the Vista machine.

    That is extremely lame.



  • @lolwtf said:



    The software has always been absolutely terrible, but it used to be possible to just disable autorun, point the hardware wizard at the disc, and with a bit of luck it'd find the driver and just install that without the 600MB of bloat. Not anymore.
     

    Often their printers have a "driver only" package (+- 50MB) to be used in networking environments. It usually work better. 



  • @Heron said:

    Apparently, I can't use my network-shared HP Deskjet 5650 in Vista.
     

    Have you tried installing it as a local printer then adding a local port with the UNC path of the share?

    Eg. Add port, local port, \pc2\hp 



  • Heh, HP multifunctions. I still remember one such mutlifunction device, where the driver (which had 600MB as minimal install and 1,1GB for full install) added an icon to the desktop, and the only way to remove this icon was through some hidden setting deep in seemingly unrelated configuration program. If you selected the icon and pressed Delete or Shift+Delete, nothing happened. If you right-clicked the icon, Explorer (desktop, taskbar, any open windows in the same process) froze.

    As for network-attached printers, if the printer is shared from another machine, try for a start simply navigating to that computer and double-clicking the printer, and if that doesn't work, you can always redirect a local port to the shared printer (Start -> Run -> NET USE LPT2: \machine\share), then tell the driver that the printer is connected to that local port.



  • @lolwtf said:

    The software has always been absolutely terrible, but it used to be possible to just disable autorun, point the hardware wizard at the disc, and with a bit of luck it'd find the driver and just install that without the 600MB of bloat. Not anymore.



    Then there's Lexmark, whose even more bloated software just takes right over the system and breaks everything. Only time I've ever had to return a piece of perfectly good hardware because of the shitty software that comes with it. Not only could I not print, a bunch of other stuff broke as well. I had to do a system restore to get it back to a usable state.



    Canon makes a damn fine printer, and amazingly enough their drivers are just drivers without all that crap attached. Good luck finding Linux drivers though.
     

    I guess I know where all the good programmers are at HP--they made hpilp (the printing driver suite that Linux uses) and left for greener pastures.

     I've never had a problem with an HP printer being supported in Ubuntu--but then again I tend to stay away from the "binary firmware" multifunctions.

    As far as Linux and CUPS support goes, Lexmark and Canon printers are great for holding down the CUPS manual you printed off on the HP laser printer so that a stiff breeze doesn't scatter the pages all over.



  • @ender said:

    As for network-attached printers, if the printer is shared from another machine, try for a start simply navigating to that computer and double-clicking the printer, and if that doesn't work, you can always redirect a local port to the shared printer (Start -> Run -> NET USE LPT2: \machine\share), then tell the driver that the printer is connected to that local port.
     

    I'll have to try that, thanks for the tip.



  • @Heron said:

    I found out something fun about some HP printers recently.

    Apparently, I can't use my network-shared HP Deskjet 5650 in Vista. 
    You see, Vista only supports this printer using a generic driver when
    connecting via USB or parallel cable.

    In other words, if I want
    to print in Vista using my HP Deskjet 5650, I have to be directly
    connected to it.  I can't set it up on a server - either Linux or
    Windows - and share it with the Vista machine.

    That is extremely lame.

     

    Interesting, we have a couple connected to our home network (one black laser, one color inkjet) and they work fine.  Just have to install the drivers first before it will find them.



  • @Master Chief said:

    Interesting, we have a couple connected to our home network (one black laser, one color inkjet) and they work fine.  Just have to install the drivers first before it will find them.

    The trick is getting the drivers to install :P  XP's drivers for the Deskjet 5650 won't install under Vista, and HP doesn't provide Vista drivers for the Deskjet 5650.



  • @Heron said:

    @ender said:

    As for network-attached printers, if the printer is shared from another machine, try for a start simply navigating to that computer and double-clicking the printer, and if that doesn't work, you can always redirect a local port to the shared printer (Start -> Run -> NET USE LPT2: \machine\share), then tell the driver that the printer is connected to that local port.
     

    I'll have to try that, thanks for the tip.

     

    Didn't work.  The "net use" command appeared to work (at least, it didn't give an error message), and I was able to use LPT2 to add the printer using Win7's "Add a Printer" wizard, but the test page wouldn't print.



  • @dabean said:

    @Heron said:

    Apparently, I can't use my network-shared HP Deskjet 5650 in Vista.
     

    Have you tried installing it as a local printer then adding a local port with the UNC path of the share?

    Eg. Add port, local port, \pc2\hp 

    Now that's interesting. Got a customer with a server with a .NET application that will only print to local printers (some sort of .NET restriction, the developers allege). Just tried the above: I now have a local printer on the server that delivers documents to one of the non-networked printers attached to and shared out from a hotdesk PC. Completely insane, but it appears to work -- a test print went through OK.

    On Monday I'll have to arrange to restart the .NET application and see whether it picks up the new printer.



  • HP have always made good printers, but in recent years they've jumped on the bandwagon and started making cheap junk too. The low-end stuff is quite frankly complete rubbish - and since you're talking about a 3-colour inkjet I'd guess it's low-end. The high end stuff is still pretty good. The software is mostly useless, but you can just ignore it and get the "driver only" package. We mostly use HP printers at work and have no real problems with them - but we never buy the "personal" printers, only the "workgroup" and "office" models.



  • Old HP printers were good, but the newer stuff isn't anymore. Even their higher-end lasers turn out to cost more in the long run than comparable printers from Kyocera and Samsung (according to an accounting service that's our client, HPs cost them about 0,04€/page, Samsungs around 0,025€ and Kyoceras around 0,015€ [these are all B&W laser printers - things may be different with colour printers]. Kyocera printers are the most expensive, while Samsungs are the cheapest, and both work equally well).



  • @lolwtf said:

    I don't understand the people who are saying HP's printers themselves are good. I've had a couple and the hardware was no better. Mixing all the coloured ink to make (muddy) black, simply refusing to turn on and/or actually print, not taking in paper or taking in several sheets at once, etc. Then one paper jam and the thing's a brick because it's riveted together and there's just no way to pull it out of there.

    It's not really fair basing your opinion solely on the 550C you bought in 1990.  Seriously-- did you think that HP still makes three-color inkjets?  Besides, back then everyone did, except for $500+ models.  And lasers are where HP excels, anyway.  The only ones that were trash were the 5L, 6L, and 1020L, because the exposed tray was vertical and the dirty, moist paper eventually caused the rollers to fail.

     



  • @operagost said:

    The only ones that were trash were the 5L
    I've got a 5L on my desk at work, and that printer's been at the firm long before I joined 6 years ago. It's somewhat slow (and occassionally needs it's button pressed before it'll start printing), but still works nicely.



  • @operagost said:

    It's not really fair basing your opinion solely on the 550C you bought in 1990.  Seriously-- did you think that HP still makes three-color inkjets?

    The 550C was a lovely printer -- superb bright colours. I believe that it was a proper four-colour printer. The successor 660C was four-colour, but the inks were too dark and you got very dark colours. Horrid contraption.

    We currently have a modern Deskjet AIO, and yes, it mixes CMY to make black far too often. It may be an issue with being a hexachrome printer, although the black cartridge is fitted. It also pulls through whole piles of paper, and periodically goes on the blink. At least it didn't die outright like the Epson AIO before it, nor does all the ink evaporate away faster than you can print with it, like the Epson.

    My hatred though is mostly reserved for Canon, who don't even have a paid helpline. If you can't find the printer's warranty details, they're not remotely interested in you. Nor can you obtain manuals. They're about the most owner-hostile company I've ever encountered, even for business-class products.



  •  I have an HP LaserJet 4+ at home that should be dead of digital arthritis, having done it's 10 billionth page by now and I'm torn about replacing it.  On one hand, using a 15 year old printer that dims lights when it warms up feels like a waste (it sucks a tonne of juice, I'm guessing), but on the other hand, you can still walk out the door at Staples with a new toner, and anything new is likely to fail before this thing finally falls apart.  


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @s0be said:

    but on the other hand, you can still walk out the door at Staples with a new toner,

    You can still get consumables for a 15 yr old piece of equipment? I thought printers were second only to razors in changing the 'format' so that you had to buy a new thing just so they could keep you buying the bit that wore out.

     @s0be said:

    On one hand, using a 15 year old printer that dims lights when it warms up feels like a waste

    ObOffTopic: gov.uk has proposed an incentive for scrapping 10 yr old cars that are still working with.. new cars that might not make it past 5 years. Because it's green(er.) Whatever. They're lying/mistaken/badly informed. Take your pick.

    That probably deserves its own WTF thread but I can't be bothered.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    I remember when HP was awesome. I have a Laserjet 8150 in the basement here at home. Fully whacked up - multifunction addon, duplexer, collator/output bins, envelope feeder, extra input trays, spool hard drive, craptons of RAM, a pair of NICs... Last good printer HP made, IMO. Except that the actual printing engine was made by Canon... And Lexmark made printers based on the same engine (Optra N I think...) - to the point you can trick them into using the same drivers. Does everything except color, and you can prettymuch get the toner from free if you know people in businesses that still use the things ("Hey, slide me your empties", give them a firm shake, and stick them in - you're good for another few hundred pages - which at home office duties is AGES). The full driver pack (you know, the one you need if yours has any of the optional add-ons beyond NICs) is already a little bit insane - I've had it ruin the spool service on two Win2k3 machines - but with a bit of luck you'll be good to go.

     

    For my color printing needs, I use an old Canon i560. Linux supports it well enough (it's a bit schitzo, but it works), and the ink... I bought 30 sets of it for like $70.


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