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Manual Switchbox for 2 Printers

Posted on 2002-04-10
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
Hi.  I need help installing a manual switchbox

I have an Epson Dot Matrix and an HP LaserJet printer that I want to run off one machine.  I have a manual A/B switchbox and necessary cables.  I've connected all the cables and have the switchbox connected to the PC through the port previously used by the Epson.

When I try to print from Notepad I see the job make it into the queue but I get an error message from Windows and nothing prints.

I thought I could just pick the printer from the Printer Dialog, move the switch to the appropriate printer and everything would work.

What am I missing and how should I use this box correctly?

Both printers are currently set to print to LPT1.

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Question by:jmerritt
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Accepted Solution

by:
Ryan Rowley earned 600 total points
ID: 6931365
What's the error that windows is giving you.
The A/B might not be the problem. Try hooking up each
printer by itself. Test to see if you can print to both by
selecting the correct printer setup. If that works you might have a bad connection with one of your cables.
Another thing is if your switch box is a simple switch only, non-powered. It might not be getting a good connection. In this case make sure all connection are
tight and then try rocking the switch back and forth between print attempts.

If the 1st test worked when you hooked up the printers directly. Try hooking each one to port A with nothing on
port B. See if that works then switch to port B. This
is another test for a bad port on your switch.

As far as the switch giving you problems, it can only
cause connectivity problems. Your drivers and software setup can be the culprit here. So test for connection problems 1st, then go for software problems.
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Expert Comment

by:SysExpert
ID: 6931598
In addition the switchbox, may not be switching all 25 pins.
Some cheaper models may be using less wires.
You need one that does all 25 pins.

ALso check the cables.

I hope this helps !
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:jmerritt
ID: 6931662
the error message is

Error writing to LPT1 for printer Epson...

I get this when the Epson is connected to the A jack AND when the HP is connected to the A jack.

The Epson prints fine if it's not connected through the switchbox.  The HP also prints fine if not connected through the switchbox.

Guess I'm looking at some crummy hardware?  Any further thoughts or should I return this switchbox?
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:Ryan Rowley
ID: 6931698
Yes, Return it.
It is not the box you want.
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LVL 5

Expert Comment

by:Jason_S
ID: 6932094
Consider buying an additional Parallel port card, and installing it.  The price may be a wash.  Although resources may not easily allow it
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