Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I bought ink cartridges on line that initially worked in my printer. Over time, and only when printing documents from an online source the printer quit working giving me a printer cartridge not recognized message.

I currently have all filled cartridges in my printer and it has selected the magenta cartridge as not recognizable. When I put another similar magenta cartridge I get the same message. When I put in a cannon cartridge, the light goes indicating acceptance of what is an empty cartridge.

How do I overcome what is clearly Canons control over which cartridge I use in my printer? Is this firmware that has been updated automatically to block use of other than canon cartridges? This is a royal pain in the butt and would cost me a mint to use the over priced canon supplied cartridges.

share|improve this question

Since recurring cartridge/toner supply sales are the real revenue stream for manufacturers instead of the initial sale of the printers, they have come up with various measures to prevent people from refilling and saving money. One such method is to embed a chip in every cartridge that stores the current ink level as detected by the printer. When a refilled cartridge is inserted the printer will refuse to accept it because according to it the cartridge is still empty. Third party compatible cartridges lacking a chip or missing any authentication data that's required will of course be rejected anyway.

The only way to make the printer accept refilled original cartridges is to either reset the ink level counter on the chip, or install hacked/modified firmware on the printer that once and for all will disable this restriction. Of course this is not always possible, or even advisable.

I don't know how legal such strong-arm tactics are or whether they will even stand up in a court of law if challenged, but I can assure you it is highly annoying to see the underhand strategies employed by printer manufacturers. I have personally come across a printer whose firmware regularly reported its costly cartridges as being empty well before they actually were. Perhaps a class-action lawsuit is in order.

share|improve this answer
Some interesting links: 1, 2. – Karan Jun 11 '13 at 1:47

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .