Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Windows 7 – Connecting To A Legacy HP LaserJet 5Si

We have this old workhorse of a printer that we received way back when from a new at that time client. It had not been “working” for a while. They wanted a new printer which we ended up selling to them.

After tinkering with the printer it turned out to be the no-name refill toners they were using that was causing the problems.

When we installed an HP genuine toner and ran a number of cleaning pages through the print quality became quite reasonable.

A new fuser, 128MB in 16bit 32MB DIMMS, and a duplex unit courtesy of eBay brought the printer up to where we could use it for a lot of our bulk printing needs.

Now that our office systems are on Windows 7, there was no time since the upgrade to get the LaserJet 5Si connected to them since the OS does not have a built-in driver for it.

To boot, the product page for the LaserJet 5Si has no information on Windows 7 driver compatibility.

Jump up a few generations in the product line to the LaserJet 8150 product page and we see a different story:


The links to the Universal Print Driver are provided.

Here is what we need to do:

  1. Download and save the HP LaserJet Universal Print Driver (HP Support Search)
  2. Double click on the downloaded file.
  3. Uncheck the When done unzipping open: .\Install.exe.
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  4. Choose a directory to unzip to.
  5. Click the Unzip button.
  6. Click Start –> Printers [Enter].
  7. Right click and Add Printer.
  8. Our LJ 5Si is network connected, so we are using the Add a local printer option.
  9. Create a new Standard TCP/IP Port and Next.
  10. Type the IP address of the printer (your printer’s IP) and click Next.
  11. At the Install the printer driver window click the Have Disk button and navigate to the unzipped HP Universal Print Driver folder.
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  12. Choose the PCL version and click Next.
  13. Name the printer and click Next.
  14. Choose to share or not.
  15. Set as Default, or not, and click Finish.
    • A test page will confirm that everything is working as expected.

Now, once the printer has been installed, we need to make sure that the printer’s installed options are showing up as expected. Otherwise, we will not be able to duplex or pick up paper from an add-on paper tray.

  1. Right click on the printer’s icon and click on Printer Properties.
  2. Choose the Device Settings tab.
  3. Verify that the correct options and paper types are set.

We have all of our printers in our workstations set to duplex by default to save on paper. To do that, after checking the printer options we click on the General tab and click on the Preferences button. There we will find the Print on both sides option to check.


We now have our old workhorse printer connected to our Windows 7 workstations.

BTW, this printer is still quite young at 267,691 pages printed since day 1 and actually somewhat comparable to the newer printers at 24 pages per minute!

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*Our original iMac was stolen (previous blog post). We now have a new MacBook Pro courtesy of Vlad Mazek, owner of OWN.

Windows Live Writer

1 comment:

Frank said...

Thank you very much, you saved my day. I needed a driver in Windows Server 2008 R2 for a LaserJet 5Si. I wonder why hp don't link "universal" drivers in older PCL5 printer sections...