How to Solve Printer Driver is Unavailable Error on Windows?
If you are trying to print something from your device, but it is returning an error message saying “Printer driver is unavailable,” and you are desperately in need of a solution for your query, you are in the right place. This difficulty usually occurs when the printer driver installed in your device is old or incompatible.
Don’t worry, and there are easy fixes available to solve your problem. Follow these fixes, and you will be ready to print again. But, before going ahead, try these workarounds, which will be to test a few things on your device.
How to Fix Printer Driver is Unavailable Error?
Uninstalling the Printer
There are mostly two leading solutions which you can use to counter the error ‘Printer driver is unavailable. Either you can uninstall the printer, all the similar software and then install it in the system. Either this or you can go through all the drivers available and choose the right one for your device.
We will uninstall the printer and all the relevant software and then try connecting it. This will, in turn, install the default drivers.
- Hit Windows + R, type control in the dialogue box, and press Enter. Once in the control panel, make sure that the option View by Large icons is chosen. Now click Devices and Printers.
- Here all the printers will be listed. Right-click on the printer, which is causing the problem, and select “Remove device.”
- Now hit Windows + R again and type devmgmt.msc. Navigate to the category Print queues, right-click your printer, and picked Uninstall device. This may not be started after you remove your printer from the control panel, so nothing to worry about if you don’t have it.
- Now hit Windows + R, type appwiz.cpl in the dialogue box, and press Enter. Here all the applications will be listed—Right-click on all your printer applications and choose Uninstall.
- After performing all the above steps, disconnect your printer from your computer if it connects via a USB connection or disconnects it from the router if it is using wireless. Shut down your computer, printer, and your router. Remove the power supply of all of them.
- After waiting for around 10 minutes, plug everything back in and start all the modules. Connect the printer with your computer utilizing a USB cable initially. Please wait for the detection and let it install the required drivers.
- Now navigate the control panel, right-click on the device and select “Set as default printer.” Now try printing a test page and check if the problem is solved.
Reinstalling the Latest Drivers Manually
If the above solution doesn’t act, we will try updating the printer drivers manually. There are also some cases where the printer is working correctly, but it gets broken due to a Windows update. The updated drivers from Windows might be uncertain and may not work for all systems. This case was particularly noted with HP printers. One way to counter this issue is to update the chosen driver manually by downloading it from the manufacturer’s website and then disabling Windows update from updating the driver.
Before you proceed, make sure that you navigate the manufacturer’s website and download the specific drivers for your hardware to an accessible location.
- Hit Windows + R to launch the Run Type “devmgmt.msc” in the dialogue box and hit Enter. This will launch your computer’s device manager.
- Navigate through all the hardware, open the sub-menu “Print queues,” right-click on your printer hardware, and select “Update driver.”
- Now Windows will pop a dialogue box asking you which direction do you want to update your driver. Choose the second option (Browse my computer for driver software) and proceed.
Please choose the driver file you downloaded using the browse button when it appears and update it accordingly.
Note: In some cases, the printer may not be apparent in the device manager. In that position, just run the installer, and the driver will be installed automatically.
- Check if the printer is working correctly at this point. If it is, drive to the official Microsoft website and download the package wushowhide.diagcab.
- Run the package and click next.
- Now select Hide updates from the option given.
- Now choose the printer update (if any) and continue. Now Windows update will not automatically update the drivers of the printer until you say it to.
Update Your Windows System
One of the reasons you may be getting the “Driver is unavailable” error could be that your system is outdated. It is, thus, suggested that you install the available Windows updates to fix the issue. Here’s how:
- Go to Start and type “update.”
- Select Check for updates.
- If there are updates available, Windows will install those updates automatically.
- After Windows has completed updating, restart your PC.
- Now, try to print something from your system and check if the problem has been fixed.