Jan 19, 2011
We have an HP DeskJet 3050 wireless printer connected by WiFi to two laptops. One laptop, a Dell 700m, runs XP Pro with all updates applied. The other laptop, a Dell XPS 15, runs Windows 7 64-bit, again with all updates applied.The printer works completely reliably from the XP machine. From the XPS 15, the printer works reliably for a day or so, then the icon in Devices & Printers is grayed, indicating the printer is offline. Even in this condition, I can access the printer's built-in web server using Firefox on the XPS 15 and the connection appears to be fine. The printer's IP address has not changed. But the printer is still reported as offline for printing by Windows.
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The workaround is to delete the device and reinstall it using Add Printer and Have Disk, but using the already installed drivers rather than re-installing. After doing that, the printer then works for a few days before again going offline.This problem is extremely irritating. I've done Google searches on this problem. Although I've found a variety of similar reports for various brands of wireless printers on Vista or Windows 7, I've not seen a solution. My latest attempt is to share the printer on the Dell 700m and print to the shared printer from the XPS 15. We'll see if that continues to work for a few days (I suspect it will). But this isn't really a solution and not always convenient.