Windows 7 Printing Primer

In most cases, installing and using a printer in Windows 7 is nearly effortless. Just plugging the printer into your computer is usually enough. Installation and setup is automatic and silent. Add ink and paper, and within a few seconds you can start printing from whatever programs you use, without thinking any more about it. It doesn't always go quite this smoothly, though, so we've devoted this chapter to the ins and outs of installing and using a printer in Windows 7. Windows gives you control over the printing system through the Devices and Printers window. To get there, click Start, Devices and Printers.

• The HP LaserJet printer is shared by another computer on the network. The network cable icon above the letters HP indicates this.

• The Okidata printer is the default printer, as indicated by the check mark. It’s also shared to others on the network, as indicated by the tiny icon showing two people, next to the word State. (The default printer check mark supersedes the network or sharing indicators on the printer icon itself, but all the indicators appear next to the word State.)

• The Fax device and XPS Document Writer icons don’t represent actual printers, but are options for faxing and creating portable XPS documents directly from within your applications. I’ll discuss this more shortly.

Devices and Printers should appear in your Start menu, but if it doesn’t, right-click the Start button and select Properties. Click Customize. Scroll down through the list of available items, and check Devices and Printers.

Initially, the task ribbon shows just two tasks: Add a Device and Add a Printer. If you click one of the printer icons, additional items appear: See What’s Printing, Manage Default Printers, Print Server Properties, and Remove Device. You will probably find that the first time you log on to Windows 7, one or more printer icons are already present. These may include any or all of the following:

• Icons for any printer(s) you have attached to your computer, which were detected by Windows and set up automatically.

• Icons for any printer(s) shared by computers attached to your network. Windows might discover and add these automatically or, on a corporate network, they might be installed for you by your network administrator.

• An icon for Microsoft XPS Document Writer. This is not a printer in the physical sense. XPS is a type of electronic document format comparable to Adobe’s Acrobat (PDF) format. It lets any computer view and/or print the document without having to have the application that created it. If you select XPS Document Writer as the “printer” in any of your applications, the program’s print function will create an XPS document file that you can then send to other people.

• A Fax icon. If your computer has a modem with fax capability, or if your organization has a network fax server, the Fax printer lets you send faxes directly from your applications without having to first print a hard copy and then feed it through a fax machine or scanner. Instead, you simply select the Fax printer from inside your application and use the normal print function.

Source of Information : QUE Microsoft Windows in Depth

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