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Solved!

Old iMac will not print to HP LaserJet

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This is an ongoing problem I've encountered over a period of years, with no resolution.

I run an office with multiple Macintosh computers. The oldest of these machines in a G4 iMac (2003 vintage) running MacOS 10.4.11. This old machine sees light duty as a file part-time server.

All other computers in our office are Intel Macs, running MacOS 10.6.8 or newer.

The office is networked using Apple Airport (WiFi). The main base station is a round Airport Extreme. There is also an HP LaserJet 4100N connected to an Airport Express via Ethernet.

A very annoying problem cropped up a few years ago. I think the problem started when I installed some HP printer-driver software while trying to update the old iMac. I am not clear as to what caused the problem. The iMac print setup recognizes the HP. When I go to print something, the LaserJet print manager application starts to spool up the printer... the LED data light on the LaserJet 4100N starts blinking... then it stops and does nothing... the LaserJet print manager app on the iMac says, mysteriously, "The process 'hppostprocessing' terminated unexpectedly on signal 5" as the barber-pole progress indicator spins endlessly and nothing happens.

I have tried using MacOS 10.4.11's Print Setup Utility to completely re-set the iMac's printer-drivers. When I get the iMac to re-acquire the LaserJet, it does the same thing. No change.

Prior to this going bad a few years ago, the iMac printed to the HP in both MacOS X 10.4.11 and in "classic mode" (MacOS 9.2) without an problems.

No other computers have any problem printing to the LaserJet.

The old iMac can still print to other, non-HP printers (Epson, Dymo) without any problem.

I turned my attention to this because one of our other computers recently died and we are awaiting replacement. In the meantime, the old iMac is being used and still cannot print to the LaserJet.

Any clues are to what is going on, and how to fix it?
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Well, here are few ideas.  It sounds like the old girl's printing system is clogged up.

 

Let's start with a reset of the printing system:

- Go to System Preferences > Print & Fax
- Hold the Option key while clicking the '+' sign and select Reset Printing System.
   

   WARNING - this will delete ALL of your printers!

 

- Select the plus sign to re-add a printer. Select the Defualt tab on the top of the window. Look for the printer, select it and then next to the "Use" pulldown, select the printer model (not AirPrint). Wait until the "Add" button becomes available. Click it.

 

Next, have you downloaded and installed this?: http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareDescription.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&prodTypeId=18...

I am employed by HP

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Holy Guacamole!

It worked!

I've tried installing print drivers before, but they never changed anything. I guess the combination of resetting the printing system and following up by re-installing the drivers from an HP software install did the trick.

Thank you!
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