I have an Epson Stylus CX 3700. I plugged it into a laptop with Ubuntu 11.10 and the printer works just fine without me installing the driver that came with it. Is there an advantage to using the manufacturers driver?
migrated from stackoverflow.com Dec 18 '11 at 5:31
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The only advantage to using a manufacturer-provided driver instead of the one bundled with your operating system is if the manufacturer's driver provides additional features that you'd like to take advantage of.
With the whiz-bang functions of modern printers, that is often the case. In order to scan, or print borderless photos, or automatically collate/staple, or get the printer to wash your car, you need to install the manufacturer's drivers.
If you just want to print pages and everything works out-of-the-box, then there's often no reason to waste time downloading and installing additional drivers. I usually don't. Then again, I use a 15-year-old laser printer. It doesn't wash my car, but it prints extremely sharp text output which is, coincidentally, exactly what I use a printer for.
A couple of other things to note, though: