Good techs understand the many general issues with printers misbehaving. This video covers a lot of these issues, such as permissions, connectivity (physical and wireless and configuration errors), and mechanical issues.
the great Mikestromi, to help you through the many A+ printer troubleshooting issues that you're going to be seeing both on the exam and in the real world. So bring 'em on guys. Number one, unable to install printer. That one's easy. You don't have rights to install that printer. is just a symptom for you pointing at administrative shares, making sure the printer that you want to share is actually where you think it is, the right IP address, the right UNC, whatever it might be. And also, make sure that it actually exists and it's turned on and little things like that. Okay, no connectivity. Yeah, that one happens a lot. What we're probably talkin' about here is that we have a printer that we've used plenty of times before and suddenly it's not there. And that's probably your big clue right there. Are you physically connected to it? If it's a network printer is it getting good DHCP? Are other people able to connect to it? A lot of times having a printer that you can't connect to is a sign of a generic network problem and has absolutely nothing to do with the printer itself. Okay, the other big thing to talk about is anytime you run into a printer problem is that you go through the process of what I call a mental reinstall. So you go in, install the printer, make sure that it shows up in device manager, make sure that the printer queue shows up in device manager, make sure that you can actually send a print test page to it, make sure it's working okay. And if you have problems like that you go through an uninstall process. One of the big things to look for is the device driver itself. In particular, if you've just done an update or you've tried something on your printer and it's not working, roll it back. People don't think about this, but you can roll back device drivers for printers just like you can for video cards or anything else. Okay, what's next? Access denied. Yep, another administrative issue. Remember, you actually have to have permission to print to shared printers, and if you don't have that permission you're not going to have any options there. Also, access denied will show up if you go into a print spooler. You try to delete a job and you don't have those permissions. Now what I want to do is move away from problems that are actually on the computer and talk about problems that actually show up on the physical printer itself. You can get a lot of great information just by observing a printer and taking a look at what's happening around it. Number one, no image on printer display. Um, okay, is it turned on, number one. Number two, is the printer in some form of sleep mode or is there some kind of keystroke where you had been adminstratively locked out of that particular printer. So, if the printer is up and running and you don't have a display you could conceivably have a bad display. It does happen, and you can even get spare parts for stuff like that. All right, paper trouble, paper not feeding and paper jam. To me that's the exact same problem. What's taking place is you've got a problem with your pickup rollers or your separate pads. In these types of situations these things wear out, and you've got to go ahead and get new ones. There's always going to be a maintenance kit to take care of that. Also keep in mind that humidity is the great killer of paper. Now here in southern Texas we have lots of humidity, and we have to be very, very careful about our paper usage. In fact, we actually will store our paper separately, or try to at least keep it within the reams, because once this humidity hits it we've got trouble. Low memory errors, okay, and it just sits there and corrupts it, you send in another print job, it's going to come out all garbled and strange, usually what you're going to have to be doing there is you're going to have to dump the print job out of the spooler, reset the printer, hard reset, get it back online, and then try again. Also, if you really needed to this is another example where rolling back a driver might be necessary, but I would doubt it. Vertical lines on page. That's a good one. When you see vertical lines on page, first of all, I pretty much guarantee we're talking laser printers here because it's a big issue with 'em. A vertical line on a page for a laser printer almost always points to there's foreign matter on your optically sensitive roller. You'll get little pieces of paper, little pieces of string that will actually wrap around it, and that's going to corrupt the image, and every time you print something you're going to get a line there. And the answer is you yank the toner cartridge and you throw it in the garbage. It is impossible to take like a pair of scissors or something and try to cut away that debris. The thing is simply too sensitive and just touching it with a piece of metal can usually force it to never be able to really print properly again. What else? Color prints in the wrong print color. I'm going to point to driver on that one CompTIA. The other possibility is that I've lost one of my colors. So this could be any color printer, that I've lost one of my colors and all of a sudden it can't make, instead of purple, which would be two of the colors, it can't make one, and the color comes out funny. That's probably going to be pointing to something like that. So I'm going to say either we've got a driver issue or we have a dead ink in whatever we might be using. Printing blank pages. Just about any technology is going to print a blank page if it has a physical problem. A thermal printer where the heating element is no longer working is going to print blank pages. If you've got a laser printer and the primary corona is dead it's going to print blank pages. So it's a matter of thinking about the technology and then making a decision on that. Streaks. Now when we're talking about streaks what I think CompTIA is trying to say is we have things that are streaking this way and that way, and that is a very much an inkjet issue and it happens all the time. When you have little jets that are beginning to clog, bits of ink will form around the outside of them and that ink will end up just getting stuck and pushing across the paper, usually it's time to go ahead and go to a maintenance mode on that inkjet printer and start cleaning it up. Faded prints. That could be anything. If it's a laser printer you're probably low on toner. Give that toner a shake, see if it'll run a little bit longer, but put a new toner cartridge in there you cheapskate. If it's an impact printer your ribbon's probably running out. Also keep in mind with impact printers is that most of the ribbons are continuous. So they'll just keep running and running and it just keeps getting lighter and lighter until you replace it. If it's an inkjet that could be a little bit tougher, but again you would probably see clogged jets, although those jets would probably have to be fairly evenly clogged unless it was a black and white where that might come up. Ghost images, ghost images happen a lot on laser printers more than anything else. If you remember the laser printing process, and if you want to pass the A+ you will, one of the steps that I added was called cleaning. So one of the last steps is there's a rubber thing that just rubs against the optically sensitive drum, pushing off any residual toner. So if I start to see ghost images, it's probably from the previous cycle, and that little rubber piece has broken. Again, just replace the toner. Next is going to be toner not fused to paper. Guess what, there's something wrong with your fuser assembly. Fuser assemblies are usually easily replaceable. Go ahead and replace one. And last, creased paper. Creased paper usually takes place because your pickup rollers, one is in good shape and the other isn't and it starts to pull at angles causing creases. Put a maintenance kit on it and you'll get rid of that problem. (light fun music)
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