Brother printer drivers and AirPort printing Apple has recently updated its list of printers compatible with the USB printer port on AirPort Extreme Base Stations; however, many users have found that printers not listed work perfectly when connected to a Base Station -- users connected to the network are able to print to the printer without problems. One of the MacFixIt editors recently found that whether some printers are successful or unsuccessful at being used for AirPort Base Station printing may depend on the driver version -- and the newest driver may not be the best.
After hearing many good things about the inexpensive Brother HL-1440 laser printer -- currently selling for the price of a toner cartridge after rebate -- this editor purchased one and connected it to a Base Station's USB printer port. After downloading and installing the OS X 10.3 drivers for the printer, he was able to successfully add the HL-1440 as a printer in Printer Setup Utility; it showed up as an available printer. However, actually printing to the HL-1440 was not possible. (A good deal of testing showed that no computers could print to this printer via the Base Station, even though they could print to other printers connected to the same Base Station, so this was clearly a printer-specific issue. The printer also worked perfectly when connected directly to any Mac.)
About to give up, the editor decided -- for no rational reason, mind you -- to download and install the OS X 10.2 drivers for the printer. After doing so and again setting up the printer in Printer Setup Utility, this time using the older drivers, printing was successful and, in fact, all printer features were supported by the older drivers.
Needless to say, MacFixIt has notified Brother of this driver snafu.
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