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Distinguished Professor
Posts: 3,397
Member Since: ‎02-15-2013
Message 1 of 1 (2,196 Views)

What is my operating system in regards to my printer installation?

[ Edited ]

When trying to install the drivers and software for your printer from the HP website, it is required to know both your operating system and your system type.


To determine if you have Windows or Mac, below is the icon you will find that is often referred to as the Start Button.


windows 8.PNG              Windows 7 and Vista.PNG             Windows Vista.PNG            Windows XP.PNG            Mac OS X.PNG

         Windows  8                          Windows 7         Windows Vista            Windows XP             Mac OS X


If you do not see either of these icons, then please review the owner's manual of your computer or find a section dedicated to product information or in the help section of the software/device you are using.


Click here if you do not see your operating system listed under the driver section of your printer's support website.



In earlier Windows versions:  Select the Start button icon and right-click on Computer (Win7 or Vista) or My Computer (XP) and left-click on "Properties" at the bottom of the gray pop-window.  Properties will display the Windows edition which contains information on which version of Windows you are using, the service pack, and further down you will find the system type which will indicate whether it is 32-bit or 64-bit.  If you do not see a version type, it is likely a 32-bit Windows XP.  


*Note: Windows Starter Editions can cause problems and errors and thus limiting you to strictly a USB connection during the installation and continued use of the printer's software.



In Windows 8: Right-click or tap and hold the lower left corner of the screen and then click or tap System in the menu.  Find System Type in the System Window, and then note whether your operating system is 32-bit or 64-bit.


windows 8 32 bit.PNG


Click here to access the HP Support website regarding operating system types for more information.



Mac OS X: For information regarding your OS version click on the Apple () to access the menu and choose "About This Mac" and you will be able to tell which version you are running which is essential for installing the proper printer software.


Mac OS 1.PNG    


Common Mac OS X have different names for their versions:

          10.5 - Leopard

          10.6 - Snow Leopard

          10.7 - Lion

          10.8 - Mountain Lion


Each version before and after the ones listed above also have additional names.  Click here to access the Mac Support website for more information.



Linux print drivers: HP has designed what is noted as HPLIP (HP Linux Imaging and Printing) software to include the driver, the toolbox, and the driver installer into one package.  This software is designed to work for nearly every Linux distribution available. Click here to download the latest HPLIP software for your printer.



Be cautious about third-party websites offering downloads to certain HP software, especially if you are required to pay for it or pay for a tool to diagnose any issues you are having.  Most HP download packages include the scanning software such as HP Solution Center or HP Image Zone.  Specific software installed is not downloaded separately and therefor, if you cannot find it for free through the HP website, then be careful of what other companies are offering.  You are putting your system at risk by downloading any software from an unknown manufacturer such as viruses, malware, or other security factors.  Take precautions to protect yourself before you install any software from a third-party site.


If you have any questions regarding any of the information above, feel free to post about it.  The HP Consumer Forum is a great place to look for expert advice regarding small to medium-sized printers (Officejet, Photosmart, Deskjet), along with how to install, update, or resolve other installation errors.


If you have questions regarding a large commercial-sized printer, seek additional expert advice at the HP Enterprise Business Community regarding large LaserJets, ScanJets, and DesignJets.


Lastly, if you just need a quick reference to a question regarding your printer or computer, click here for immediate access to your device's support website.


Thank you for being a part of the HP family and community.  Smiley Happy


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