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Troubleshooting Printer Status Unknown: Get Your Printer Back on Track

Title: Troubleshooting Printer Status Unknown Error: Steps to Get Your Printer Back On TrackIs your printer displaying the frustrating “Printer Status Unknown” error message? Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

Many users encounter this issue, often resulting from various causes such as Windows updates, antivirus restrictions, outdated firmware, or corrupt driver files. In this article, we will delve into the possible causes of this error and provide you with quick fixes to help resolve it.

We will also guide you through the necessary steps to update your printer’s firmware and troubleshoot the issue to get your printing tasks back on track.

Printer Status Unknown Error

Causes of the printer status unknown error

Windows Updates: Sometimes, after installing Windows updates, certain printer settings and configurations may become incompatible, leading to the “Printer Status Unknown” error. Antivirus Restrictions: Overprotective antivirus software settings can often hinder the printer’s communication with the computer, resulting in the error message.

Outdated Firmware: A printer’s firmware acts as the operating system for the device. If this firmware becomes outdated, it can cause communication issues and trigger the “Printer Status Unknown” error.

Corrupt Driver Files: Printer driver files may become corrupted due to various reasons, such as software conflicts or incomplete installations. This corruption can lead to the printer status being displayed as unknown.

Quick fixes for the printer status unknown error

Restart PC: Sometimes, a simple restart can resolve temporary glitches and restore the connection between the printer and computer. Reboot Printer: Unplug the power cord from the printer, wait for a few seconds, and then reconnect it.

This action can clear minor hardware issues and restore communication between the printer and the computer. Get Printer Online: Ensure that your printer is set to online mode by navigating to the printer settings on your computer and selecting the correct option.

This might be a quick fix for the error message. Unplug and Plug Printer: If the preceding steps did not work, try unplugging the printer’s USB cable from the computer.

Wait for a few seconds, then plug it back in. The system will recognize the printer again, and the status should no longer show as “Unknown.”

Updating the firmware

HP Printers: If you are using an HP printer, it is crucial to regularly update the printer’s firmware to ensure optimal performance and fix any known issues. Visit the HP website and search for your printer model to find the latest firmware updates.

Follow the instructions provided to update the firmware.

Steps to resolve the printer status unknown error

Resetting the HP Smart app

Windows key + I: Use the keyboard shortcut Windows key + I to open the Settings app on your computer. HP Smart app: Navigate to the Apps section in the Settings app and locate the HP Smart app.

Reset: Click on the HP Smart app and select the “Advanced options” link. Next, click on the “Reset” button to reset the app’s settings to default.

This might resolve any software conflicts causing the printer status to be displayed as unknown.

Reinstalling the HP Smart application

Windows key + I: Use the keyboard shortcut Windows key + I to open the Settings app on your computer. HP Smart app: Locate the HP Smart app in the Apps section of the Settings app.

Uninstall: Click on the HP Smart app and select the “Uninstall” button. Follow the prompts to remove the application from your computer.

Reinstall: Visit the Microsoft Store or HP’s official website to download and reinstall the latest version of the HP Smart application. This fresh installation might resolve any corrupted files causing the printer status unknown error.

Reinstalling the printer

Windows key + I: Use the keyboard shortcut Windows key + I to open the Settings app on your computer. Printers and Scanners: Locate the “Printers and Scanners” section within the Settings app.

Remove: Find your printer listed in the Printers and Scanners section and click on it. Select the “Remove device” button to remove the printer from your computer.

Remove driver: After removing the printer, click on the “Print server properties” link and navigate to the “Drivers” tab. Find the printer driver and select the “Remove” button to eliminate any potential corrupt driver files.

Restart PC: Restart your computer to complete the driver removal process. Reconnect printer: After the computer reboots, reconnect your printer to the computer via USB or Wi-Fi, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

The computer should detect the printer again, and the status should be displayed correctly. In conclusion, encountering the “Printer Status Unknown” error can be frustrating, but there are steps you can take to resolve the issue.

By understanding the causes of the error and implementing the quick fixes provided, such as restarting your PC or reconnecting your printer, you can potentially overcome these issues. Additionally, resetting or reinstalling the HP Smart app, as well as removing and reinstalling the printer, can often rectify any software conflicts causing the error.

Remember, keeping your printer’s firmware updated is vital for optimal performance and to avoid such errors. By following these troubleshooting steps, you can regain your printer’s functionality and get back to printing smoothly in no time.

Additional Information and Resources

Persistence of the error and seeking help from HP

Despite following the troubleshooting steps mentioned earlier, there may be instances where the “Printer Status Unknown” error persists. In such cases, it is advisable to seek further assistance from the manufacturer, especially if your printer is still under warranty.

HP, for example, offers comprehensive support through their customer service agents and service centers. To get in touch with an HP agent, visit their official website and navigate to the support section.

From there, you can find contact information or live chat options to connect with HP’s customer service team. They will be able to provide personalized guidance based on your printer model and specific error situation.

Remember to have your printer details and any error codes ready before reaching out to expedite the troubleshooting process. If required, HP’s service centers can be a valuable resource for diagnosing and repairing hardware-related issues.

They have trained technicians who can assess the printer and determine the root cause of the “Printer Status Unknown” error. To locate a service center near you, visit the HP website and use their service center locator tool.

Driver solution tool for troubleshooting

In some cases, the “Printer Status Unknown” error may be caused by outdated or incompatible printer drivers. These drivers act as the interface between the printer hardware and the computer software.

If they are not functioning correctly or are incompatible with the operating system, it can lead to communication issues and trigger the error message. To address driver-related issues, you can utilize driver solution tools like OutByte Driver Updater.

Driver updater software scans your computer system for outdated or incompatible drivers and automatically updates them to their latest versions. This can help resolve any driver-related conflicts that may be contributing to the “Printer Status Unknown” error.

OutByte Driver Updater, for example, provides a user-friendly interface that allows you to easily initiate a scan of your system. It identifies outdated or incompatible drivers and provides a one-click update solution to ensure all drivers are up to date.

This tool saves you time and effort by automating the driver update process, eliminating the need to manually search for and install individual drivers. Additionally, driver updater tools can help resolve other PC-related issues by ensuring that all drivers, including those related to printers, are functioning optimally.

By keeping your drivers up to date, you can improve system performance, enhance compatibility with other devices, and minimize the occurrence of errors and malfunctions. It is essential to note that when using driver updater software, it is recommended to choose reputable and trusted tools from reliable sources.

Always verify the legitimacy and credibility of any software before downloading and installing it on your computer. Reading user reviews and checking for certifications can provide further assurance and help you make an informed decision.


Resolving the “Printer Status Unknown” error requires patience and a systematic approach. By understanding the possible causes, implementing the quick fixes, and exploring additional resources, such as seeking help from the manufacturer or utilizing driver solution tools, you can effectively troubleshoot and resolve the issue.

Remember, while restarting the PC, rebooting the printer, and updating firmware are simple solutions that often work, more persistent cases may require contacting the manufacturer’s customer service or seeking professional assistance. Furthermore, utilizing driver update tools can address driver-related issues and enhance overall system performance.

However, always exercise caution when choosing and using such software, ensuring you select reputable options from trusted sources. By following the recommendations provided in this article, you can overcome the “Printer Status Unknown” error and ensure smooth, uninterrupted printing experiences.

In conclusion, troubleshooting the “Printer Status Unknown” error requires identifying potential causes, implementing quick fixes such as restarting the PC and reconnecting the printer, and exploring additional resources like contacting the manufacturer or utilizing driver solution tools. By following these steps, you can overcome this frustrating error and ensure smooth printing experiences.

Remember to keep your printer’s firmware updated regularly and seek professional assistance if needed. Resolving this error will not only save time and frustration but also ensure efficient and uninterrupted printing.

So, next time you encounter the “Printer Status Unknown” error, don’t panic – follow these steps and get back to printing with ease.

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