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Parallel, usb dot4 ports explained

Posted on 2010-08-26
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-15
I thought a parallel printer uses an lpt port and a usb uses a dot4 port? except I had a problem with a parallel printer and looked at the ports, dot4 was selected, I changed it to lpt1 but it didn't work. Another user changed it to another dot4 and it worked?? it is a hp laserjet 1320
Question by:Sid_F
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Expert Comment

ID: 33530805
DOT4 is a technology created for HP old printers (2000-2004)
for example laserjet 1010 / 1015 uses DOT4 for configuring printing port

99 % of printers are "PLUG and play"
You connect the LPT (parallel) cable and put the printer ON
System recognices the new hardware and demands for Driver (if they are not installed)

Its the same with USB printers (100 % of them are Plug and Play so
YOU NEVER SHOULD change the port (USB/LPT) the system assigns

DOT4 is always linked to and USB port
Remember: dont change the port that systems configures

Author Comment

ID: 33530889
Ok but I still don't understand is dot4 used for parallel?

Expert Comment

ID: 33531092
Parallel is not Dot4.  When you install a USB printer, run setup from the CD and don't plug the printer in until is prompts you.  You won't have to worry about what port it uses after that.  LPT is for a parallel port, Dot4 is older technology and USB is newer.  
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Author Comment

ID: 33531620
I will have to worry about what ports it uses if there is a problem :  )
My query is how can the config of a parallel printer (under ports section) point to dot4 and still work?

Author Comment

ID: 33543014
ok it tells me what a dot 4 port is but I still cannot verify where dot 4 ports come into play with parallel printing?
LVL 93

Expert Comment

ID: 33543228
from webopedia :  The protocol was specified by IEEE 1284.4, which is an enhancement to the IEEE 1284 protocol for parallel port computing

Author Comment

ID: 33543388
ok, So when I plug in a HP printer thats work off parallel can it work off port lpt1 if so why does it say dot 4? how can you remotely distinguish between a printer connected through a parallel port and a printer connected through usb if both say dot4?
LVL 93

Accepted Solution

nobus earned 2000 total points
ID: 33543764
it depends on the model; as you can read above, first existed parallel protocol IEEE 1284
then, for different reasons, they implemented Dot4 protocol : specified by IEEE 1284.4, which is an enhancement to the IEEE 1284  (i assume for plug and play -  and maybe other advantages
and then they moved on to USB, to have full PnP

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