Why won't my Windows 8 laptop 'talk' to my Canon Pixma printer?!?
August 28, 2013 9:34 PM   Subscribe

I have a new Samsung Ultrabook running Windows 8, and a Canon Pixma iP4600 inkjet printer. The interwebz tell me that I should just be able to connect the two, and print away. I can't. Now what??

I don't have the installation disk for the Pixma printer. I've tried installing the driver software through the official Canon website, but no joy. (I downloaded something called Canon Easy-WebPrint EX. Okay, fine. But my laptop still isn't recognizing my printer.)

Then I went through the 'devices' menu, as instructed by another 'help' site, and looked for a printer to install. It says there is no printer detected.

Actually, in case you can't tell - I've lost track of what I've done to try and get this show on the road. :( Suffice to say, I have been googling for an hour, followed all the methods I've come across, and still not found a way to make my laptop acknowledge that there is a printer connected to it via a USB port.

I am planning on investing in a new printer/scanner anyway. Should I just go buy one now? Will it be any easier to use, or am I just going to have the same problem?? I don't have money to waste, but I am losing too much time (and my mind) on this.

I know I'm not giving the right information here, so I'll be monitoring the thread for questions. Thanks in advance!
posted by Salamander to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
- What type of connection are you using?
- Have you tried restarting both devices _then_ looking for thru the device menu for the printer?
- Have you tried connecting to any other printer (nearby friend's printer) to check if it sees that one?
posted by artdrectr at 11:04 PM on August 28, 2013

Is the printer connected via USB or are you attempting to do this setup wirelessly? Some items, including Canon printers, need the direct connection for first use.

I have 2 Pixma printers (a 6300 and a 3200) and the setup was fickle with both. It has been a while since I did the setup but I recall 2 things - 1) running an uninstall app to get rid of all references to the printer after failing to set it up the first time and 2) using a direct USB Cable connection for the setup.

Once the printer was recognized with the cable attached and the correct driver installed, the wireless options were far easier to deal with.

If I remember any other tricks, I will add later.
posted by lampshade at 11:08 PM on August 28, 2013

If you go to the canon website for your printer there are many software products to download. It appears that the easy web print product you downloaded is not the printer driver, just a piece of helper software to make printing web pages easier. You need the printer driver first. That's under "drivers". The website should detect that you're running Windows 8, but check if that's indeed selected in the "operating system" box, or if not, choose that. Then you get the appropriate downloads for Windows 8.

So, my first step would be rebooting the computer and printer and installing the driver. Hopefully that's enough.
posted by davar at 1:42 AM on August 29, 2013 [1 favorite]

Does your laptop have a mix of USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports ? I have had devices that could not be seen for the initial setup unless they were plugged into a USB 2.0 port. Once the driver was installed they would work from both types of USB ports.
posted by rfs at 2:00 AM on August 29, 2013

Also, there may not yet be a driver for W8 & your printer. I ran into that a few months back with my HP; so I moved the printer to an older Mac & sneakernetted files around (walked from computer to computer with a thumb drive to move & print files).
posted by tilde at 3:16 AM on August 29, 2013

Okay, there is a driver. You've walked through installing it? Unplugging it and plugging it back in? I just went through this today with my HP but I (unhelpfully, sorry) now run W7. I had to install the driver and then replug in the printer before it would let me install the printer.
posted by tilde at 5:22 AM on August 29, 2013

If the computer doesn't recognize a device connected to the USB port, then the problem isn't drivers. Windows needs to see a device, and then once it sees the device, it needs a driver to make the device work. It's either the printer, the cable, or the computer. You need to start with making sure all three of those things work. Make sure the printer works in another computer, and make sure the USB port you are trying to use works.

(And even though it isn't relevant to this question, a lot of times you can use older drivers that are included with Windows to make newer printers work. If you have an Acme 4000 printer, you might try the driver for the Acme 3000 or the Acme 400.)
posted by gjc at 5:44 AM on August 29, 2013

When you connect and disconnect the USB cable, do you hear the Windows USB connection and disconnection chimes? If not, I'm thinking faulty cable.
posted by flabdablet at 9:45 AM on August 29, 2013

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