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Issue #577: August 12-18, 2018

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Q: Just looked at a Feb 23, 2014 issue (Geek Note: I.G.T.M. #344) that I had saved re: Printer compatibility with Windows 8, 8.1.  Now that we are up to Windows 10, is there a similar fix to incompatibility with my Canon MP240? This is a printer that I use occasionally at a vacation home that I no longer can find a driver for my Windows 10 on a new HP laptop. Or is there a way to move driver from my old laptop? I also have not been able to get auto back up installed on my 2TB Seagate. Any help on this issue?

I live just around the corner from you and have been enjoying your Christmas lights since you first started.

– Cort P.
Niceville, Florida

A:  Wow Cort.  You win the I.G.T.M. “Oldest Reference” award for referring to a column from four and a half years, and some 233 issues ago.  You’re obviously a loyal reader, so thanks for that.  As for the Geek Lights on the Corner, I have been toiling away behind the scenes all year to bring new and exciting things to our annual event.  I’m changing up so much of the show’s technology that I’m having to re-do many of our old tried-and-true props.  I haven’t had to do this much work since Season 1 way back in 2007!  I’m sure you and the rest of the show’s Superfans will be joining me in December to see how I did.  In the meantime, if you want to follow the progress of the build, or even learn about how you can join in and become a Geek Lights insider, visit TinyURL.com/GeekLights, which will link you to the show’s Facebook page.

Now, what were we talking about?  Oh yes, printer driver compatibility.  First things first.  I looked up your printer on Canon’s website, and it looks like the driver hasn’t been updated since 2014.  The latest version of Windows for which it lists native compatibility is Win 8.1.  I’m guessing this is probably the version you already have, but no, you can’t move it from one computer to another.  Now, there is a possibility that such Win 8/8.1 drivers will function under Win 10, but I’m guessing that if that was true in your case, you wouldn’t have taken the time to write to me.  If I’m mistaken, and you do not have the latest driver, or have not yet tried it under Win 10, by all means, visit the Canon website and download it and try it out.

Should the above fail, the question then reverts to the one you originally asked, whether drivers can be run in Compatibility Mode under Windows 10.  The happy answer is, yes they can.  To do so, first make sure your printer is connected and powered-on.  To proceed, right-click on the driver file itself, and select “Troubleshoot compatibility” from the context menu.  Windows runs the Program Compatibility Troubleshooter for you.  Click on “Troubleshoot program” and check the box that says “The program worked in earlier versions of Windows but won’t install or run now” then click “Next”.  Select “Windows 8” and click “Next”.  Finally, click on “Test the program…”.  This procedure will be making a change to your computer’s configuration, so you might get prompted for permission, and might need an account with administrator privileges to proceed. Of course, you’ll want to allow the process to have the required access.  The driver will install and you should be up and running.

As far as your question about “auto back up” and your 2TB Seagate drive, you were a little stingy with information.  If you’re trying to back up the drive’s contents, it’s just a matter of adding the drive’s letter to whatever backup scheme you’re using.  Not all backup software likes removable drives because their drive letter can change, so check this as a possibility.  If you’re trying to back-up to that drive, again, it’s a matter of using the drive letter.  If neither of these covers your situation, write me again with more precise information on what it won’t do, and I’ll see if I can help.

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