I have a Lexmark E250d printer attached to a Thecus N2100 NAS.

On Windows Vista I've managed to configure this using an "Internet" printer port with the URL of http://thecus:631/printers/usb-printer. I can add a printer in a similar way in Windows 7, but it never manages to print the test page.

If I go to "Configure Port" in Vista, it just has "Security Options" - on Windows 7 it's asking about Raw mode vs LPR mode etc.

On Vista I'm using an E250d-specific driver from Lexmark; on Windows 7 there's a Microsoft E250d driver, or a Universal PCL XL driver from Lexmark... I wouldn't expect this different to be related to the problem, but I thought I'd mention it anyway. (Lexmark doesn't have a Windows 7 E250d-specific driver as far as I can see.)

Any suggestions? I was thinking of upgrading my main laptop from Vista to Windows 7, but I'd really like to get this sorted first...

EDIT: If I connect to http://thecus:631/printers/usb-printer via Chrome while capturing with Wireshark, I get this response:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Wed, 06 Jan 2010 16:47:23 GMT
Connection: Keep-Alive
Keep-Alive: timeout=60
Content-Language: C
Transfer-Encoding: chunked
Content-Type: text/html;charset=iso-8859-1


No idea what that's meant to be doing...

EDIT: On further consultation, this would appear to be the Internet Printing Protocol which is layered on HTTP. Printing a test page successfully from Vista posts to that URL. Will attempt the same on Windows 7...


I've heard of people having luck convincing windows 7 to install vista-specific drivers anyway, but my own attempt at this (an audio card) had mixed results (I have sound, but no mic). Still, it might be worth a shot.

I think your best bet is to go for the Universal PCL driver in RAW mode, but for me that's mostly because I have a certain respect for the PCL system and because LPR brings back bad memories of trying to get a printers working in linux desktops back in 1999-2000 when hardware support on linux was truly abysmal.. er.. even more so than it is now.

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  • Okay - I'm pretty sure it was defaulting to Raw mode, but I'll double check. Any suggestions on how to diagnose it further? I was considering using Wireshark to see what was going on - is that a reasonable suggestion? I don't really understand what the point of the URL is, if it just needs a host name... – Jon Skeet Jan 6 '10 at 15:37
  • Can you view the thecus:631/printers/usb-printer url in your browser? – Joel Coehoorn Jan 6 '10 at 15:56
  • Nope, it doesn't display anything sensible. – Jon Skeet Jan 6 '10 at 16:46
  • The machine is listening on that port, and it does respond to HTTP requests, but not with HTML. Will edit question. – Jon Skeet Jan 6 '10 at 16:48
  • Okay, we've gone past what I can help with, sorry. – Joel Coehoorn Jan 6 '10 at 17:40

Okay, I've sorted it out, thanks to Wireshark.

On Vista when I tried to print a test page, it posted directly to the URL.

On Windows 7, it started making SSDP requests instead. I figured this might be to do with looking up the name, so I changed to use the (statically assigned, fortunately) IP address instead of the host name... and now everything's fine.

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