How to Connect a Home Printer to a Laptop

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A home printer can be connected to a laptop, usually through a USB connection, and the laptop will recognize the device and install the proper device driver software. Check the control panel to make sure that a certain printer has been connected to a laptop with help from a software developer in this free video on computer printers.

Part of the Video Series: Computer Help & Solutions
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name's Dave Andrews. Today I'm going to show you how to connect a home printer to a laptop. What I have here behind me is a regular printer. And as you can see it has a USB cable connection. A USB cable is basically a little box cable, sort of rectangular I guess. If you look at the tip of it, it has just a rectangular connection with four little pins on the inside. So to connect our printer to our laptop, what I'm going to do is set my laptop on my desk here and I'm going to plug in the USB connection, so let's just plug that in. Now, my laptop is going to detect that a new device has just been plugged into the computer. It tells me down here at the bottom, it's installing the device driver software. Now a driver is a program that runs hardware. Every piece of hardware connected to your computer has a driver. So what it's doing now is installing that driver for this printer. So as you can see, it says that the device driver software installed successfully. Now, if I click on the start button, and then I go to my control panel... I'm going to scroll down until I find printers. Right there. And you'll see that my HP Desk Jet... actually this one... the D2300 Series has been connected correctly. So I'm going to right click on it and go to properties and to make sure I'm going to click print test page. Now, the question arises, "What happens if the printer does not install automatically?" Well, what you'll do in this case is you will open up your web browser and you hear that printing there and you're going to go to the manufacturers website. In this case, it's just HP.com. Find somewhere where it says drivers, and we'll click on download drivers and I'm just going to type in the product name. This is a D, or a Desk Jet, D2330. Find your operating system. In this case, I'm using Windows Vista. And then here you'll see a list of downloads under drivers usually for the driver for that printer. Just download and install that software and then reconnect your printer. As you can see our print job came out correctly, and my name is Dave Andrews and I've just showed you how to connect a home printer to your laptop.

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