FOWC – IT’S SO VERY SIMPLE – Marilyn Armstrong

It couldn’t be more simple …

Owen called. He asked me if I could print a return label for him as this is his official Amazon address.

“No problem,” I said. I forgot that last week I did a completely new installation of my computer, an upgrade to the latest weirdest version of Windows 10, and bought a new router. We installed the router and once I got it set up, everything has been working fine, except for the things I haven’t gotten around to rebooting, like my mini iPad which I haven’t used at all, much less rebooted.

It’s so simple …

iPads for me are things you own and never figure out why you own one. I have a friend who has three of them and he hasn’t figured out what to do with them either.

“So why,” I asked, “Do you have three?”

“I keep updating them,” he said.

Garry actually uses his. I figured he would. It’s a lot like the Blackberry he had, the only mobile phone he loved. Instead of opening up the Big Computer, if he just wants to check email, it works great. Mine, on the other hand, has no real purpose in my scheme of things. It’s just there. In case.

I had totally forgotten about the printer. I haven’t printed anything and I don’t print often. Mostly, I print directions on how to get somewhere because I do not trust the GPS — with good reason. And return labels.

I realized I didn’t see any sign of a printer on this computer. I went into the other room and turned it on. Always a good start. But it still wasn’t there. Ran lots of software that was supposed to find it, but it didn’t. I eventually realized my ethernet connection wasn’t working because the cable wasn’t connected. You don’t need to connect it to the computer, but it does need to be plugged into the wall and the router. Or so they kept telling me.

Eureka! Installed!

Having accomplished that, I still didn’t have a printer. So I did what those of us with real strength of character do. I located the original installation DVD, hooked it up in the DVD player, and undertook the reinstallation of the printer.

I hate hooking up printers. I’m very savvy about computers and software, but printers are largely a complete mystery to me. Also, copy machines. I think it’s personal. They don’t like me and I don’t like them back.

The printer is in my old office down the hall and I was not there. It became quickly obvious that I was going to have to take the computer to the printer because it wasn’t going to work the other way. Can’t haul the printer. Too big.

Garry graciously offered to open the door so I could drag me and the computer in there. Up came the instructions and I found the itty bitty tiny print that told me: “When nothing else works, do this.”

Just ONE more thing …

I had to press one button until it blinked twice, then pull my hands away and wait for it to start blinking furiously. Then I had to press another button and wait, followed by the third button and more waiting. Do something on the computer. Wait. A paper began printing and eventually, lo and behold, the printer appeared on the screen.

Fifteen minutes later, during which time I took a few pictures since there wasn’t much else to do, the printer was almost working. Just a few settings to change … and I printed Owen’s stupid return label. Since he had just bought the SAME router, he didn’t have printing either.

So much for plug-and-play.

It was so simple. It only took me an hour or two, although almost all that time was spent trying to convince my computer to find it by itself, which it clearly was NOT going to do.

It really was simple, if you could figure out what the instructions were trying to tell you. That was the hard part — along with hauling my computer around. It weighs like two cinder blocks.

Categories: #FOWC, Daily Prompt, Humor, Technology

Tags: , , , , ,

14 replies

  1. AHA! You answered (albeit too late for my own personal usage) the question of why my neighbor who was hacked and went through the same hoops you had to jump to get her stuff ‘back’ could NOT get her printer to work. I went over and was as stumped and frustrated as she. Finally her son-in-law got the printer to ‘go’. I BET it wasn’t plugged in so the new router could find it…. auggghh. Simple fix, too bad we hoomins tend to make simple things COMPLICATED. Well if there’s a next time when I have to hook up a printer, I’ll know to try your method. Bet it works too! Thanks Marilyn! 🙂


    • Ultimately, I used the original DVD that came with the printer. THAT fixed it. Nothing else worked and my son just borrowed the DVD because his doesn’t work either … it’s the new operating system. But turning it on is definitely step one.


  2. I love the image of the printing window where it says: “Owner: Alien-Marilyn” I know where that comes from, but it made me snicker nonetheless…


    • I tend to lose my creativity during installations. I truly loathe installing stuff and in particular, installing an operating system. If you can’t get yours to work, you can call someone. It will cost you some money but save you considerable aggravation.


  3. So actually, you are trying to say “Not so simple!” Nothing new on the computer ever is. Updating hardly ever means improving, in my estimation. Grumble grumble.


    • Windows 10 is better in many ways than Windows 7. It is much faster. But installation has gotten more complicated because electronically, our lives are a lot more complicated. I think it isn’t because of the operating systems we use, but because our WiFi usage has gotten so complicated. We have an awful lot of stuff that has to work on WiFI. When we first went wireless, it was just a computer and a router and that was it. Then we added a printer. Maybe a Kindle. Eventually, we added televisions and all kinds of other small devices. I was actually shocked at how many devices I had connected. The ONLY one that wasn’t connected was the printer and now it’s connected too — maybe 12 devices? It would be 14, but my phone is off as is the mini iPad.

      Other people have even more. Windows 10 can handle it reasonably well. Windows 7 has a more trouble with so many devices. The cable company also has a really hard time and needs to create more and more power to local communities.

      I don’t think we will ever see simple again.


  4. Printers, if any gadget is going to play up in my house it will be the rarely used printer and of course you never discover it until you need to print something.
    My laptop just updated itself, even gave me a bit warning that “This might take a while” so I left it to do it overnight. Next day “Welcome to Microsoft’s April update.” Hello? In June? It informed me that Homegroup was gone. I could never make it work anyway so no loss and told me several lother things I could now do, none of which I particularly care about but the laptop is working fine so that is the important thing.


  5. Ah, modern technology.


    • They keep making things that used to be really simple far more difficult. Remember — seriously — plug and play? It worked. You plugged it in, the computer found it, updated drivers and voila, done. With each update of Win 10, it gets MORE complicated to do everything. Maybe it’s an improvement, but it doesn’t feel like it.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. It’s seldom simple.


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