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The Ultimate Cheat Sheet on Printer Drivers

October 23, 2017

We’ve all heard of printer drivers, but if you don’t work in IT services, you may not know exactly what they do. This cheat sheet will give even the most novice office printer users a better understanding of this crucial piece of software.

What Is a Driver?

Computers have countless drivers that serve different purposes. Drivers are software that receive instructions from the computer and use that information to make an attached piece of hardware function. From printers to keyboards to webcams, all hardware attachments require drivers in order to work properly with the computer.

Operating systems also have specific drivers compatible with that system only. If drivers can’t translate your computer’s language, using the computer can cause frustrations instead of making your life easier. Don’t forget that with each operating system update, you’ll also have to update drivers.

Printer Drivers Explained

Like any other computer hardware, printers require specific drivers to print the right documents when you want them. In order to use a printer with your computer, the computer must have the correct driver installed.

If a driver becomes corrupted and causes printing glitches, you’ll need to uninstall it first. Then, reinstall the driver from the disc that came with the printer or from the manufacturer’s website. If your office has a fleet of printers, each computer will need to have drivers installed for each of the machines.

What Functions Do printer Drivers Affect?

If your printer isn’t working as it should, the troubleshooting advice you’ll often hear is, “Have you checked the drivers?” We tend to forget drivers exist until the moment everything stops working. You might be surprised to see all the printing functions drivers affect:

  • Print speed
  • Proper paper tray feeding
  • Ink consumption
  • Photo quality

Printing Problems Solved

Here at Pacific Office Automation, our goal is to make your life easier with office solutions. If you have any questions about printers or copiers at your office in Portland or Seattle, contact us today. We’ll help you say, “Problem solved.”

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