Edit 2/18: it was the printer cartdrige. The printer was giving me errors with the new cartridge in becuase it wanted me to take it out and put it in again, which I did that night, and then everything worked fine–I hadn’t figured this out because I didn’t look at the printer and what it was trying to tell me. /shrug

My printer is completely fuxxored.
1) I like to print out lecture notes 2 pages per sheet. Saves paper. Usually it’s readable, but the pdfs I was printing from used really small text and had huge margins, so I thought, “you should be able to tell the printer to zoom in! yeah that would be perfect!” Yesterday I tried to tweak the zoom in “page setup,” and then it printed weird half-lines of text. “Weird,” I thought. “Oh well, I’ll deal with it later.”
2) Sending a printer test page from the printer window works perfectly, so I know it’s not because of ink.
3) Today, I tried again, thinking “not only has my computer been restarted, it’s been off for a night, and surely it must be just an adobe reader problem, and surely it has reverted back to its default printing settings again.” So I tried printing, after looking around at the settings and seeing that yes they had reverted back to the default. Then I tried printing… with the same results as yesterday. “Fuck it,” I said, “I’ll print it from notepad,” since I’d noticed that you could select the text in a pdf. Turns out printing from NOTEPAD is fuxxored as well–a few half-lines of something that is barely recognizable as a middle fraction of a line of text. Same thing. But… again, printing a test page from the printer window works fine, and so does printing a random webpage from firefox.
4) The troubleshooter said, “why don’t you try these steps to print from the command-line?” “Ok,” I said. It said, “If your printer prints a page with the directory listing, then the connection between your printer and your computer is fine.” When I followed the instructions, the printer spat out about a dozen sheets of empty paper. I am unsure of whether this means … anything.
5) I looked at the ports, cuz the troubleshooter told me to. The PSC uses port “DOT4_001”. WTF? So I tried setting it to lpt1, too. Nothing. The description of lpt1 is “printer port.” The description of DOT4_001 is “PSC500” (the name of my printer). So like is DPT4_001 some special port that HP made up or something? WTF??
6) I try notepad again. This time, “the document failed to print.” Why? I check the printer window. “Error,” it very helpfully points out. WTF???
7) I try wordpad, just for the fuck of it. I press “print.” It shows the little “printing” window–says it’s sending it to PSC500 on LPT1. The little printing window goes away. Nothing ever goes into the printing queue. My printer doesn’t do anything. WTF??????
8) I think I must be insane, so I change the black ink cartridge anyway. No change.
9) I remember that printing from firefox worked. I slap html and body and pre on the Notepad file, change the ending to .html, and open the text in firefox. I press print. “Error,” it says. “This document failed to print,” it says. I press cancel. It hangs forever on “Error – restart – printing.” Ok, I’ve really fucked everything up.
9) I am very perplexed.
10) I write perplexed livejournal entry to show my perplexedness. Plooplut motherfucker.


  1. suggestions

    The answer may be to get a new printer, possibly this Epson Stylus C86. It’s about $90 at Amazon, $70 with a mail-in rebate.

    Its predecessor, the C80 was reviewed favorably my Macworld a couple years ago:

    HP also offers some cheap entry-level printers for about $50:

  2. Gangsta Hax0r

    Grep this muthafucka!
    I ain’t gonna take no DOT4_001 for my lpt1!
    You best reassign yo ports and look to ya drivuhs, or I’ma bust ya with a sledgehammer Officespace style.

      1. I feel like some context is lacking…

        Have you edited the entry since I made this comment?

        I mean, it’s still funny, but the connection seems a little less obvious than it did before..

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