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Thread: Non existant printer auto detected in Windows XP Pro




  1. #1
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    I have Windows XP Pro SP1.
    A few weeks ago I installed an Epson Stylus Color 480 printer with the latest software and drivers from the Epson webpage.
    Then, when I booted my PC, Windows automatically detected the printer, asked for the location of the installation files, and installed them without any problems.
    However, right after the installation of this printer, it also detected another printer, which doesn't exist. When Windows asks for the location of the files, I've tried to reinstall the Epson files again, but the installation of this nonexistant printer always ends with an error.
    Then it displays a check box asking if I want to be reminded to install this printer again, I always check the "No" option, but when I reboot it always autodetects it again, so I just cancel the installation window. It really doesn't bother after I close this window, but that window makes booting slower, and I was happy because I had just made my booting faster with the tweaking guides.
    I've tried uninstalling and reinstalling the Epson printer several times, and the problem persists. I also tried removing the printer completely, and even with no printer it still detects the nonexistant printer. Can anyone tell me how to get rid of this invisible printer?
    It's not important to know all the answers, as long as you know how to contact someone who does.

  2. #2
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    Any idea which Printer is it detecting. I mean does it provide name of a printer?
    When you click on cancel, go to device manager.
    Control Panel --> System --> Hardware Tab and then click on Device Manager.
    Now look for a yellow coloured question mark. If it is there then right-click on it and simply disable it.
    Do try to print with your printer after u do lest you find out that you disabled your original printer.
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  3. #3
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    As I understand the information from Epson, your original installation was flawed.

    Do not install the printer software using the dialouge presented by Windows.
    Instead, you are supposed to cancel the Hardware Detected dialouge. Then install from the CD.

    I'm not 100% sure, but this may be the problem. It is in the FAQ's on the Epson site.

    Try uninstalling, and reinstalling using this method. That may cure it.

    Also, I'm wondering if perhaps you are on a network and if Windows is attempting to install drivers for that:?: Perhaps I'm off base there, just curious.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by asklepios
    Any idea which Printer is it detecting. I mean does it provide name of a printer?
    When you click on cancel, go to device manager.
    Control Panel --> System --> Hardware Tab and then click on Device Manager.
    Now look for a yellow coloured question mark. If it is there then right-click on it and simply disable it.
    Do try to print with your printer after u do lest you find out that you disabled your original printer.
    Thanks for your reply.

    It doesn't provide the name of the printer, it just says "Found Hardware - Printer". I'm sure it's not the Epson printer, because when I uninstall and reinstall this printer it detects it as "Epson Stylus Color 480". This Epson printer is not disabled, it works fine as the only printer installed, its just that when I boot it sees the nonexistant printer.

    In the device manager I can't see any printers, I can only see LPT1 Printer Port, which is working fine (no yellow question marks or conflicts).
    It's not important to know all the answers, as long as you know how to contact someone who does.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. C
    As I understand the information from Epson, your original installation was flawed.

    Do not install the printer software using the dialouge presented by Windows.
    Instead, you are supposed to cancel the Hardware Detected dialouge. Then install from the CD.

    I'm not 100% sure, but this may be the problem. It is in the FAQ's on the Epson site.

    Try uninstalling, and reinstalling using this method. That may cure it.

    Also, I'm wondering if perhaps you are on a network and if Windows is attempting to install drivers for that:?: Perhaps I'm off base there, just curious.
    Thanks for your reply.

    The original installation of the Epson drivers and software presented no errors, it was completed normally and the printer worked fine. On subsequent uninstalls and reinstalls, when the Windows dialogue detects the Epson printer I point to the location of the files and the installation is completed normally. The problem is that immediately after any installation of the Epson printer and everytime I boot my PC, it detects a second printer, with no brand or model because it doesn't exist!

    I'm not on a network.

    I did some tweaking of my PC a few months ago following the Windows and BIOS tweaking guides in this forum, and I also updated the BIOS of my PC. However, no problems occured after this tweaks and BIOS updates, it all started when I uninstalled a dead printer and installed another one. Do you think the cause can be a BIOS setting or a Windows tweak (a disabled service, maybe?)
    It's not important to know all the answers, as long as you know how to contact someone who does.

  6. #6
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    You tried Mr. C's advice?
    Check Epson's help center.
    I feel Mr. C is right! Your installation seems to be a problem.
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  7. #7
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    Yes, maybe the problem was originally caused by the Epson drivers and software. I'll email them to see what they recommend.

    The strange thing is that now if I uninstall and disconnect from my PC all printers, when I boot it continues to detect the printer. There is absolutely no printer there, but it sees one. Strange.
    It's not important to know all the answers, as long as you know how to contact someone who does.

  8. #8
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    Make sure that "plug and play " is enabled in bios and the printer port option is set to "EPP"... also boot to "safe" mode and remove all printers from the list...then reboot to "normal" windwos and add printer using the xp method you described.. if this doesn't solve your problem then I suggest a format and reload of windows is needed as you likely have a corruption in windows or a potential virus activity on system
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  9. #9
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    You might also check the "add/remove software" section in control panel and remove any printer drivers listed there.

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