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How do I use a Dell printer with my iMac

Posted on 2012-03-23
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I just bought a new iMac and have a Dell 2135CN that I would like to use with it. Dell doesn't offer Mac drivers for it. What are my options to get it to work?
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Question by:TcAnthony
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Mac2010 earned 500 total points
ID: 37760155
I would first try:
installing new laser printer with one of the Generic drivers:

1. Go to "System Preferences" (in Apple menu)
2. Go to "Print & Scan"; and click on the + sign in the lower left corner of the window
3. Select "IP"; then Line Printer Daemon
4. Enter IP number of the printer and select for driver "Generic PostScript Printer" or "Generic PCL Printer" (I would select PCL first)

You may be able to print now but not be able to use printer specific features.

If this doesn't work, you could try Matt Broughton's suggestions in this thread:
https://discussions.apple.com/thread/2365960
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Expert Comment

by:mccrick
ID: 37760681
It sort of defeats the purpose of having a Mac if you have to cobble and hack your peripherals to it. The suggestion above may very well work, but I would not be tempted by the parallels route unless you were already planning on having parallels. A new printer may be in the stars.

Here is a $600 All in one that you should be able to find for $430.

http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11680189&cm_mmc=BCEmail_722-_-Focus-_-41-_-MarketingItemName

The other solution I would explore is a CUPS driver for that specific model.
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Expert Comment

by:Martin Liss
ID: 37763380
Take a look at the 3rd post in this link.
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Expert Comment

by:Alan Henderson
ID: 37763827
It's a hassle but I'd install the free VirtualBox on your Mac, dig up a copy of Windows XP, install it and the Dell drivers in a Windows virtual machine.

Otherwise follow mccrick's advice and trade in your Dell printer. Unfortunately Dell have no vested interest in supporting Apple's OS.

I run XP in VirtualBox on my MacBook Air just to run the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary. You only need to use about 200MB of your system RAM and XP runs smooth as silk.

:)
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Expert Comment

by:Mac2010
ID: 37764321
Actually I was referring to this answer in my previous post:
Matt Broughton
Re: Dell 2135cn Printer
Mar 13, 2010 5:18 PM (in response to djmahon)
The specifications provided by Dell at http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/products/print/2135cn_en.pdf indicate that this printer can use a PCL 6 driver. I would suggest using the Mac OS X packages for the pxlmono drivers from OpenPrinting.org http://www.linuxfoundation.org/collaborate/workgroups/openprinting/macosx/pxlmon o. When you set up the printer use the "Generic PCL 6/PCL XL Printer Foomatic/pxlcolor" driver.
I have no information on the how to use the scanner in Mac OS X.

In you decide to buy a Canon multifunctional, make sure the model is supporting Macs (and more than just printing). Check it with Canon support. Recently I was forced to run Windows to be able to set up the scanner module of a Canon Multifunctional for someone...
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Author Comment

by:TcAnthony
ID: 37766110
I can print b&w to the generic PCL driver. I do have VMWare on the machine but was hoping to not have to go into a Windows session every time I wanted to print. Neither do I want to purchase a $400 printer just for a solution. If that is the ONLY solution, I understand.

I was hoping someone else has run across this issue before. We we a complete Dell shop until lately so all of our current printers are Dell.
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LVL 11

Expert Comment

by:mccrick
ID: 37766227
Replace ALL of the Dell machines. - Sorry couldn't resist.
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