Ultimate compatibility: Microsoft Surface printing to a parallel port dot matrix printer

imageMicrosoft does a lot of bragging about the Surface being able to support printers via the USB port.

Robert decided to put this claim to the ultimate test, and decided to print something from his old printer, which happens to be an Okidata dot-matrix printer with a parallel port.

Of course the Surface does not in fact come with a Parallel port, but one standard Belkin USB to Parallel cable later, and that problem was neatly sorted.

While most people retired their dot matrix printers a decade ago, the demo does go to show that the Surface, despite running Windows RT, is a real computer, which still works exactly as expected.

Thanks Bob for the tip.

  • http://www.twitter.com/wixostrix WixosTrix


  • http://twitter.com/dandrayan Dan Dautrich

    Wow, that’s fantastic… an ancient dot-matrix printer works with Surface, but Canon can’t be bothered to at least enable basic support for my 6-year-old MP530 printer/scanner/fax.

  • Monkey D Black

    holy shit, I think that printer is older than I am O.O

  • RicardoDawkins

    LOL… Loving this.

  • peterfares

    I really hope they open up the desktop to third party programs eventually. It would make RT a real computer.

    • Emi Cyberschreiber

      virus and malware ported to arm? oh yeah great idea.
      who doesn’t want Norton or Karspersky for Surface and ARM 😀 /s

      • peterfares

        No one wants to, which is why it already has Windows Defender for anti-virus and anti-spyware.

        All they need to do is add a switch in the settings menu to allow non-market sources like Android does. Or they could even make it really complicated so that an average idiot can’t enable it and load shit. It would just make ARM tablets a lot more useful if they could run third party desktop programs/programs which require admin rights.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gavin-Tom/100001144097567 Gavin Tom

      already making a surface pro. No point in doing so. I’m sure somewhere down the line someone will jail break the surface, not really sure why you would need to since again they are coming out with a full tablet pc replacement, in the surface pro.

      • peterfares

        ARM tablets are cheaper and don’t require fans.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gavin-Tom/100001144097567 Gavin Tom

    haha I remember these things. This however does make me feel rather old.

  • Kim

    Hi I am wondering if you can help me on my problem due to printing. I am using hp printer which is for sure newer than your printing over there. But my surface seems cannot get to the printer port. I have the printer software installed to my surface and when I press print, there is hp printer model on the list. But it just cannot send to the printer after I pressed print. I suspect the problem on the port which might not set correctly. Thanks in advance.