Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


A quick futile question...

  1. #1


    Posts : 5,707
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    A quick futile question...


    Great afternoon!

    So I'm working with someone who owns a small car dealership and they want the Windows 8 Release Preview with 7 in dual boot on their machines as they want it and will mitigate to it. I was introduced to a Compaq desktop PC running Xp Media Center that now runs Windows 7 perfectly fine, but having a couple driver issues in 8.

    But that's not the point. One of their devices, or should I say an anchor, is a dot-matrix printer. Yes, an almost 15 year old printer. Never have seen one in almost my entire life up until now. Funny how I'm installing new software technology along side outdated hardware.

    Now, the printer in question is an Epson LQ-870. I was tasked in getting it to work with Windows. But after some research, I've found it is literally futile, or is it?

    Does anyone have any tricks or tips or suggestions up their sleeves as to getting this to work? I've tried the driver install, but Windows detects it as incompatible and won't run, as I'm assuming it's a 16 bit device. It's one a serial to USB adapter and Windows detects it as a USB print device, and doesn't obviously print.

    I don't know why, but old technology freaks me out.....

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Maybe your client should consider an adapter card that runs the printer on its native interface (parallel).

    Epson support's latest mention of drivers are for Vista: they were supposed to be installed with the OS. Whether 8 continues to have built-in drivers, I have no idea.

    Seems like there must be some way to do it. Many businesses require impact printers for multipart forms.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    India
    Posts : 1,184
    Windows 8.1, Windows 7, Linux Mint 14


    Is that printer working fine with the installed Windows 7 ?
    Have you tried the 'trouble-shoot compatibility' option?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Orbiting the Moon
    Posts : 2,975
    Windows 10 x64


    Yes good question Arpan: Was the printer working in Win7?

    If you need to run it in Win8 and no good drivers are available (I mean not even drivers for Win7 or Vista...) then you'll need to setup a XP VM or even a Win98 (if it's a good OS for that printer) and install and use printer from there. VMware Player has good printer support and you should try this if no other solutions apply.

    A small XP VM uses about 2GB of disk space and a Win98 VM about 200-600MB, it all depends for which OS was the printer designed and you should go with that. Of course I'd go with compatibility mode on Win8 first, but it's not guaranteed to work hence the small VM solutions.

    Not sure if it works but if you have 32bit windows, enable DOS support in Control Panel and try again.
    Personally I'd go with the Win95 or Win98 VM because there are already some good drivers for it:
    Epson LQ-870, Drivers & Downloads - Technical Support - Epson America, Inc.
    and the setup it's pretty easy.

    Good luck
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    India
    Posts : 1,184
    Windows 8.1, Windows 7, Linux Mint 14


    Quote Originally Posted by Hopachi View Post
    Yes good question Arpan: Was the printer working in Win7?

    If you need to run it in Win8 and no good drivers are available (I mean not even drivers for Win7 or Vista...) then you'll need to setup a XP VM or even a Win98 (if it's a good OS for that printer) and install and use printer from there. VMware Player has good printer support and you should try this if no other solutions apply.

    A small XP VM uses about 2GB of disk space and a Win98 VM about 200-600MB, it all depends for which OS was the printer designed and you should go with that. Of course I'd go with compatibility mode on Win8 first, but it's not guaranteed to work hence the small VM solutions.

    Not sure if it works but if you have 32bit windows, enable DOS support in Control Panel and try again.
    Personally I'd go with the Win95 or Win98 VM because there are already some good drivers for it:
    Epson LQ-870, Drivers & Downloads - Technical Support - Epson America, Inc.
    and the setup it's pretty easy.

    Good luck
    I am not quite sure. Since, my sound drivers weren't working properly, infact they didn't install in 7 after I upgraded to 7 from xp. Then all I did was, went to control panel, programs and features, run programs from previous version of windows, then it searched for issues, I clicked the not listed option, browsed to the driver installation setup file and continued and it WORKED !!

    This option is available in windows 8 right in the Windows Explorer. Right click the driver installation file and choose compatibility option.
    Last edited by Arpan; 23 Jul 2012 at 19:44.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Orbiting the Moon
    Posts : 2,975
    Windows 10 x64


    Quote Originally Posted by Arpan View Post
    Then all I did was, went to control panel, programs and features, run programs from previous version of windows, then it searched for issues, I clicked the not listed option, browsed to the driver installation setup file and continued and it WORKED !!

    This option is available in windows 8 right in the Windows Explorer. Right click the driver installation file and choose compatibility option.
    And the chosen file(s) was a exe of the driver installer?
    Compatibility works on executables only from what I tried on my own.

    Keep in mind that his printer is even older than the XP era. There are drivers available for Win 3.1 up to NT 4 and that's all we got.

    Your technique here should work with the latest NT 4 drivers which are the closest to XP.
    But if that fails: it's VM time.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    India
    Posts : 1,184
    Windows 8.1, Windows 7, Linux Mint 14


    Quote Originally Posted by Hopachi View Post
    And the chosen file(s) was a exe of the driver installer?
    Yes, it was a exe driver installer.

    Keep in mind that his printer is even older than the XP era. There are drivers available for Win 3.1 up to NT 4 and that's all we got.

    Your technique here should work with the latest NT 4 drivers which are the closest to XP.
    But if that fails: it's VM time.
    That is the reason I had asked him if it worked fine with 7. He said that his client had upgraded to 7 from xp. So I assumed that his client must have used the printer with xp.

    Anyway, if that doesn't work, as you rightly pointed out: its VM time. Thanks
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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