I have a site I made that will not print (File > print, nor print preview) in IE9 on Windows 7 64 bit. All other browsers I have tested print fine and I have run the site through the W3C validator and it is approved. Any suggestions on how to troubleshoot? It simply prints a blank page.


I poked around in IE9's developer mode with the site. There's a couple things of note that I found. One, disabling all CSS allowed the page content to show up in Print Preview, but of course that's not a solution. It does tell us, though, that something in the CSS rendering is the culprit. Looking further, I found that you have a ton of CSS properties in there, way too many to try and parse through them and isolate the offending one or group, by hand, anyway (which I would have to do given the tools available to me right now).

However, I found that this line, in your <head> block, seems to be something to look into:

<meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=8" />

This tells IE to use IE8 Standards compatibility mode. If you manually tell IE9 to use IE9 Standards mode, the page content properly appears in Print Preview.

I haven't looked any further than that, but this seems to be a special condition in how IE8's rendering engine handles the CSS in your website, and one that IE9's had actually fixed.

If you really want to make the page printable in IE8, then I think this should get you going in the right direction. Otherwise you could just have it default to IE9 Standards mode and call it "fixed". ;)

  • this worked. I used conditionals to apply it. – phirschybar Feb 10 '12 at 18:55

This page works for FireFox V9 or Chrome V16, but not IEV9. You can see this without printing, but checkng "Print Previeiw". The CSS is using media tag for all situations (web and print). You need to isolate something in your CSS that is causing this to fail in IE, and then use a separate

<link media="print" type="text/css" href="myPrintVersion.css" />

for that exception. (Probably something like omitting the background image which blanking out the entire print page).

  • this is true but I decided to go the other route. – phirschybar Feb 10 '12 at 18:56

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