What's the latest on laser printers?

Ryan Moore paniclater at gmail.com
Mon Mar 18 16:21:15 MDT 2013

This needs to be in PLUG's "Best Of".

On Mon, Mar 18, 2013 at 4:02 PM, S. Dale Morrey <sdalemorrey at gmail.com>wrote:

> Just a thought, a mental exercise if you will.
> If someone were to implement a workaround that didn't require a
> firmware update to a dev firmware, they might look very carefully at
> each cartridge and realize that the cartridge has a serial number.  A
> little bit of thought might reveal that this serial number might just
> be placed into a table that is tracked by the printer in nvram.
> When page count reaches x, then it would throw that error and refuse
> to use a cartridge with that serial number.  Now I'm not saying this
> would work, but a full hardware reset has been known from time to time
> to erase the all the contents of nvram and frankly it's not that hard
> to do if you're in there replacing a part anyways.  :)
> Of course this doesn't work for cartridges that have their own
> counter, so I also heard through the grapevine that there is a super
> secret firmware that you can load for every single printer made by HP
> that features the awesome Quality Assurance single vendor lock in
> tool.
> The word is that this firmware is a development tool created by HP
> Printing Engineers, because when developing firmware and drivers,
> having that stupid page count thing go off can be a real PITA. Perhaps
> they use some compile time magic changes pagecount+=1 to something
> else. (It's not written in C or ASM that's all I'm allowed to say)
> Now of course as some of you already know,  I used to work for HP and
> while there, I lead the team that developed the new toolchain that
> they use to write their firmware and I'm still under NDA for another
> year or two.  The NDA is very strict. I can't discuss anything other
> than my general role (can't even mention tools used) therefore I'm not
> saying this firmware exists, so I'm just speaking purely
> hypothetically.
> It's all postulation, but if it did exist, perhaps it would be listed
> under modelnum_firmware_revnum_dev or modelnum_firmware_rev_eng
> instead of _rel or _release and maybe they would list it on their
> site, or possibly on bittorrent somewhere.  Again I have no knowledge
> of these things, it's just speculation :)
> On Mon, Mar 18, 2013 at 4:30 PM, Barry Roberts <blr at robertsr.us> wrote:
> > On Sun, Mar 17, 2013 at 10:17 PM, Andy Bradford
> > <amb-sendok-1366172242.gcankejjlnalinjdanbg at bradfords.org> wrote:
> >> For  extremely  easy  setup  and  low TCO,  I've  always  gone  with  HP
> >> PostScript laser jet printers with a  network adapter.
> >
> > My frustration with my current HP printer is the "smart" drum and
> > toner cartridges that just refuse to print when their count gets to
> > the HP-specified level.  I want to print until the quality starts
> > degrading, then replace it.   That and the price of hp supplies makes
> > the cost/page of my current HP printer quite high.  Unless I hear HP
> > has changed from that practice significantly, I'm not inclined to buy
> > HP again.
> >
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