I have been using the XP machine for any word processing I want to print, because the printer driver for my old printer works on it, and it works
especially well with Wordpad.
Wordpad stopped working on that machine (I get a message saying it failed to open a new document, when I try to start the program.) So, I attempted to use the bigger-but-slower Open Office 4. It keeps crashing. I tried LibreOffice, and it does not open for me. I downloaded and installed Abiword, in case something has messed up existing programs, thinking a pristine installation might give me a functioning program. It seems to go only so far toward opening, with some things showing up on the screen, but it fails to complete its own display (the features that are signified in the task bar do not fill in).
I'm guessing that some shared Windows file, used by all the word processing programs, is not getting accessed, or is corrupted.
And, you may recall that my newer, faster machine, running Windows 8.1, did not have the appropriate driver available from HP, which is no longer supporting it. I had used a basic driver from the Windows OS list, but was unhappy with it, so I tried installing a driver file I had from HP a few years ago, and it didn't work on the newer machine. So, I think I can use one of my word processing programs on the newer machine to write the sermon, but then I won't be able to print it.
Jack suggested that there must be copies of a good driver I could use on the internet, somewhere--but I don't have lots of time to track one down. [Of course, I now wish I had done so before this crises.] The printer runs from an HP deskjet 5100 series printer. (I seem to recall the exact model number is HP dj 5150.)
If I could get back into the native Windows list of printer drivers and reinstall it, and if it would work to print stuff, I would settle for that (even though it did not give me complete access to every printer feature, like presets for black ink only at fastnormal speed).
I just went to the list of printers in my Windows OS, and it does not have hp deskjet 5100 or 5150 on the list at all. I'd thought it did, at an earlier installation attempt. Did I somehow wipe it
out when I tried to do what I'd thought would be an improved installation? Or, did I make a mistake with the list?
Am I correct in thinking that I need an exact match?
I clicked the choice that asks for Windows to update the list (the prompt says it may take several moments). I hope that the updates only ADD choices, not delete them.
After the update to the list, I chose a deskjet 5100 series driver, and marked it to install. But, when I tried to print a test page, it did not
In the course of attempting to troubleshoot, I finally found the list of installed printers, and found there was MORE THAN ONE 5150 driver already installed. I picked one of them and clicked to make it the default driver, and then I printed a page as a test, and it worked!
I have printed three complete documents from the newer computer. I had two computers on my desk, with the older XP machine on the right, next to the
printer stand. To print from the Windows 8.1 machine, I stretched the USB cable across the desk, so it is crossing between me and the keyboards and
mice. I think I now need to bite the bullet and re-arrange my machines so that the newer box is beside the printer. The older machine, which has the
dinosaur full-size tower, will be where I can get into it to plug in some hard drives which I want to access for old files, which I plan to copy onto
USB thumb drives.
Every now and then, I just have to make a major effort to move forward, or the small chores accumulate and I suffer for it later.
I'm going sign off now and change around the computers. Here's hoping they both work when they are re-arranged and plugged in again. (You all know
how it is--an external cord, a hard drive ribbon, an internal component that moves slightly as the tower is moved around, and who knows what might
The newer machine is hooked up and seems to be working properly. I haven't tried to print, yet. I inserted the USB cable in the back, this time. Will it work as well from there? I'll soon see.
Success on printing from the back USB. I think I'll put the parts of the other machine on the left side of the desk and hook them up another day. There are some papers I am supposed to find, and a call I wish to make about the estate.