A driver is software that lets your operating system interface with your hardware. Most hardware needs a driver. This includes graphics adapters, USB drives, webcams, etc.

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No Internet After Reformatting Windows? No Problem

A number of YouTube users replied to my video Find Your Network Settings in Windows XP asking for advice on what to do when you have no Internet after reformatting Windows.  This is almost always as simple as installing the correct Ethernet or wireless driver for your computer.  Your computer should have come with a disk with all of the drivers for your hardware. If you put in an ethernet or wi-fi driver after-the-fact, that should have come with a disk too.

Install the drivers from the disk, and your Internet connection should be available.  if you are using wireless, you may have to configure your network name (SSID) and password.

Using a Canon MultiPass F50 on Windows Vista

The bad news is Canon no longer supports the Canon MultiPass F50 (and I assume it’s brethren in the MultiPass product line) and has no intentions of making MultiPass drivers for any version of Windows Vista or for the 64-bit version of Windows XP.

The good news is you can still make the printing feature of this multifunction device work with newer versions of Windows by using a simple work-around.

Step 1: Put the MultiPass F50 into “Printer Mode”

The MultiPass has a hidden feature which allows it to run in a printer-only mode which emulates the same feature-set as a Canon InkJet S630 printer.  Don’t give me credit for the discovery: I picked this up from a user named GregD on Internet.com’s WinDriver’s forum.

 To put your MultiPass in Printer Mode, push the following buttons in the order they are listed: Menu / Scan / Copy / Set / Set. The LED display should now say “Printer Mode”. If you later want to scan or fax, I simply reboot the printer (if there is a better way, hopefully someone leave a comment about it). Be sure to do this before you connect the printer to your computer, or Vista will try and fail to install it as a MultiPass.

Step 2 : Connect the printer to your PC

As I mentioned, Canon doesn’t have a MultiPass driver for Vista or for Windows XP 64-bit Edition.  But by using the above key combination your printer will emulate a Canon InkJet S630. If you connect the printer via USB Vista should automatically detect it as an InkJet S630.  If your MultiPass is connected via parallel, you may have to manually add the printer. Be sure to select the Canon InkJet S630 driver when you do!

Adding Drivers to a BDD LiteTouch Image

Since Vista’s release Microsoft has provided a variety of tools for deploying their operating systems. One such tool is Business Deployment Desktop which Microsoft describes as “the best-practice set of comprehensive guidance and tools from Microsoft to optimally deploy Windows Vista and the 2007 Office system.” Though BDD certainly makes OS and application deployment to a variety of hardware platforms simpler than ghosting, eventually you’ll run into a problem: some critical hardware may not be natively supported by WinPE, the preinstallation environment used to load the OS onto a new system. This article will explain how to inject LAN drivers into WinPE, allowing you to deploy installations to a larger variety of hardware. Read more