So what does the absence of a printer driver mean? Generally, it means that there is some problem with the printer drivers, which makes the printer not work properly with your computer. Sometimes this error is also indicated as a condition of the driver software installed in the Windows operating system.
The unavailability of the printer driver prevents you from printing even if you replace the printer cartridges. It also prevents you from using other similar functions, such as scanning and copying. If you encounter this problem, try one of the following ways to resolve it.
What causes “Printer driver unavailable”?
- The cause of the “Printer driver not available” error may be an incompatible driver or a corrupted file.
- If you recently upgraded your computer’s operating system from Windows 7 or 8 to Windows 10 and found that your device is not printing properly, the printer driver may also have been corrupted during the upgrade process.
- It is also possible that you have a printer driver installed that is not compatible with the new version of Windows.
How do I solve the “Printer driver not available” problem?
Install all Windows updates
- On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and the I key at the same time to open the Windows settings menu.
- Then click on Update and security.
- Click the Check for Updates button.
- The download and installation will start automatically if updates are available.
- Wait a few minutes for the process to complete, then restart your computer to check.
Uninstalling the printer driver
- Press the Windows + R key combination, enter “Control Panel” in the dialog box, then press Enter.
- In Control Panel, make sure that “View by : Large Icons” is selected. Then click on Devices and Printers.
- All printers are listed here. Right-click on the printer that is causing the problem and select “Remove Device”.
- Now press Windows + R again and type “devmgmt.msc”.
- Go to the “Print Queues” category, right-click on your printer and select “Remove Device”.
- Then press Windows + R, type “appwiz.CPL” in the dialog box, and press Enter.
- Right-click on all print apps and select “Uninstall”.
- After completing all of the above steps, disconnect the printer from your computer if it is connected via a USB connection, or disconnect it from your router if it is wireless.
- Turn off the computer, printer, and router. Unplug all devices from the power outlet.
- After waiting about 10 minutes, plug everything back in and start all the modules.
- First, connect the printer to the computer via a USB cable.
- Wait for detection and allow the printer to install the necessary drivers.
- Then go back to the Control Panel, right-click on the device and select “Set as Default Printer”.
- Now try printing a test page and see if the problem is resolved.
Installing the Universal Printer Driver
- While holding down the Windows key, press X. Now select Device Manager.
- Once you open Device Manager, find your printer. If you can’t find it, look in the “Unknown Devices” category.
- Right-click on your printer, and then click “Update Driver”.
- Then click on the “Search for drivers on your computer” option.
- Select “Choose from a list of available drivers”, then “Generic software device”.
- Now click “Next” and restart your computer.
Frequently Asked Questions
The "printer driver is unavailable" error message means that the driver installed for your printer is either incompatible or out of date. It may also mean that the driver is corrupt and your computer does not recognize it.
- Press the Windows key, find Device Manager and open it.
- Select the connected printer from the list of available devices.
- Right-click on the device and select Update Driver or Update Driver Software.
- Click Automatically check for driver updates.
- Follow the instructions on the screen to install the updated driver.
- Restart your computer.
- Go to Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> Devices and Printers -> Device Manager.
- Click Print Queues to display a drop-down list.
- Find your printer model in the list and right-click the printer icon.
- Go to your computer's control panel and click Devices and Printers.
- Reinstall the printer drivers.