Just as your office PC, smartphone, or tablet, require periodic system updates, so do your printers. With technology advancing so quickly, updating your electronics is the best way to improve performance and keep them running at optimum capacity. In the case of security software, patches and upgrades can mean the difference between being protected and being vulnerable, but while a printer driver update may not be quite so crucial, it can have a significant impact on employee efficiency and print operations; here’s more.
Printer Driver 101
All printers have one, but do you know what a printer driver is? Simply put, it’s the brains behind the brawn, acting as a translator between the print application on your computer, and the printer itself. When a print job is ordered, the driver interprets the data, translating it in to what you see printed on the paper.
Timing Is Everything
Rather than setting a schedule, update printer drivers only when needed. If there are no issues with the printer, random updates may actually hamper performance. Instead, wait until you have performance issues, such as:
- An unresponsive printer
- Connectivity issues
- Print requests that get lost in the shuffle
- Poor quality documents
Steps To Update Your Printer Driver
Once you’ve decided to try updating the printer driver, you’ll need to follow these four steps:
- Acquire the make and model number of the printer. Since printer drivers are specific to each manufacturer and model, it’s imperative that you identify your make and model before proceeding. Identifying information is usually found on the back or side of the printer.
- Find the correct update. Head to the manufacturer’s website, and find the right update for your particular model. Keep in mind that the most recent update might not be the one you need, and avoid using universal updates that may be circulating online.
- Download and install the printer driver. Follow the instructions on the manufacturer’s website to download and install the driver update, taking the time to read through each step.
- Run a test print. The only way to know if the update worked is to test it; order documents from several different printers and applications.
Updating your printer drivers is a necessary step towards maintaining an efficient and effective print network. A Managed Print Services (MPS) provider can help by continually monitoring your print equipment, detecting, and solving problems (including print driver updates!) before they arise.
To find out how Managed Print Services can help you keep your print environment running in tip-top shape, we invite you to schedule a free, no obligation print assessment below.