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HP LaserJet 5MP - Drivers for OS9 and earlier?

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Of all the surprises I've found over the years about this $9.99 thrift find, by far the biggest is its LocalTalk port! Just found it mentioned on a test print which is the only thing I've only ever done with it. The worst was that finding the necessary power cable or Lump-onno-Rope for ti was that it amounted to a RA Plug power cable I'd had all along! ::)

 

Was just hooking it up to the MDD via the Printer Port and a USB Adapter and beginning my search for drivers. Might not need search to search?

 

Has anyone ever had the 5MP or compatible LaserJet up and running under LocalTalk? Strange, or maybe not, that there's no Ethernet port on this thing, but right there it is, Apple's ancient LaserWriter/Printer Networked printer connection solution! 8-o

 

The only Mac drivers I've turned up easily are for OSX, no need for those, but if anyone knows of Win98/7/10 drivers for the 5MP or something with which it's backward compatible that would be much appreciated.

 

Back to the search!

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Still no joy on the QS'02 front, but it's up and running on the Win10 Notebook without doing much of anything special. Got pages and pages of gobbledygook .TXT on the first attempt at printing a JPEG. Cancelled that and managed to get a couple of good prints from notepad. Got it set up as the default printer and now it's printing PDF files nicely and efficiently with its PostScript capability.

 

Found a batch of drivers in a 5MP thread over on MacOS9Lives, but gotta figure out my password to download them. :/

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All you really need is the PPD for the printer and they shouldn't be too hard to find. The LaserWriter 8 or AdobePS driver does the rest.

 

EDIT: Drivers are still on HP's support site for OS 8 and 9.

Edited by NJRoadfan

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PPD??? Tried the LaserWriter 8 driver to no avail. Might be time to set up the Ethernet to PhoneNet bridge? Also need a USB cable coupler for the Windows side.

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PPD = Postscript Printer Description, its used by the driver to define things like resolution, paper trays available, etc. The 5MP only has parallel and localtalk, so a bridge is likely needed for hassle free Mac use. USB to parallel cables work fine with Windows (which uses a PCL driver), but not Macintosh. Classic MacOS only expects Postscript printers to be connected via an Appletalk network, hence why the LaserWriter8 driver only works via the LocalTalk port.

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2 hours ago, NJRoadfan said:

Classic MacOS only expects Postscript printers to be connected via an Appletalk network, hence why the LaserWriter8 driver only works via the LocalTalk port.

+1 this. An ethernet-to-Localtalk bridge is the most straightforward way of solving your problem.


The one alternative that pops to mind to me is if you have some other device on your network that can act as a print server. A lot of routers these days have USB ports you can hang a printer off of, but they're often limited in what protocols they'll support; I have no idea if it's even remotely possible to use IPP/CUPS natively with the Classic Mac OS. However many of them do support LPR as well (IPP is *kind* of a superset of LPR), and there are also stand-alone LPR devices like this. (They used to sell direct ethernet-to-parallel ones that would let you skip the adapter you already bought, you could check eBay.) If you set it up with one of these you can use the "Desktop Printer" functionality in Mac OS to print over LPR.

Obviously you could use a Linux box as the print server to share it via either LPR or Netatalk; a Raspberry Pi could do the needful, but that's not plug-and-play.

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It's still on HP's website.

 

I found floppy disks at my work for "JetDirect Utility" for LaserJet 4MP.  I'm going to see if the contents are different than what's on HP's website.  Macintosh, DOS, Windows 3.1, and Novell disks.

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The 5MP lacks any sort of expansion slot, its a "personal" desktop printer. HP's official print server solution was an external parallel port JetDirect box.

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That explains a lot. I guess the 5P would be the pro version of the 5 series? Thanks for the background info, much help.

 

Thanks to everyone, especially on the Laserwriter 8 information, time to dig out my bridge box and some PhoneNet connectors. oP, I was working from a DuckDuckGo search and didn't have much luck with hits on HP's site as every search got me a page with 7 driver packs for Windows NT! In my frustration I missed the [Change] button. ::) Now I've got drivers for OS9 and Win98 to play with when I get a chance. Maybe with the LaserWriter 8 setup the printer won't gag on PDF export files from AI that print fine at work.

 

I love it when so much detailed information surfaces in "How do I" threads. I've been trying to ween myself off my, gotta do it all myself insanity, it's a slow process, but it's beginning to work.

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I am virtually certain that I have the original CD that came with my family's LaserJet 6MP back when...perhaps that could also run the 5 series as well?

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Could very well be. It's exciting to me to find a relatively recent AppleTalk port equipped laser printer for my RetroMac/Win98 setup. Win 3.1 off a DOS Card will be a bit of fun to play with sometime.

 

There's a 5MP on eBay for $140 shipped right now. Are there other lasers for RetroMac AppleTalk available at reasonable prices using toner cartridges not soon to be discontinued?

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3 hours ago, NJRoadfan said:

The 5MP lacks any sort of expansion slot, its a "personal" desktop printer. HP's official print server solution was an external parallel port JetDirect box.

Wow, it's aggravating that multiple sources get that wrong.

You can get the "correct" JetDirect box on eBay too, but at the price it goes for an Appletalk bridge might be a better deal.

 

1 hour ago, Trash80toHP_Mini said:

That explains a lot. I guess the 5P would be the pro version of the 5 series? Thanks for the background info, much help.

When an HP printer of that vintage has a "P" in the name it means "Personal", not "Pro". IE, it's the baby of the line.

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To add: 5 or 5M would be the "office" version. M would've meant a card or JetDirect with LocalTalk and PostScript was installed. the 5N would have Ethernet, I don't know off the top of my head if that would also have PS and AppleTalk functionality.

 

There were larger versions (Si) could print 11x17.

 

The one to find is probably the regular 5/5n/5m. Toner should still be made for it, it's got the modular jetdirect, parts will still be available, and it might even share toner cartridges with the original EX engine from the LJ4 and the LaserWriter 16/600, 600, and 630. HP 98A cartridges (which I just checked, work with both the 4 and the 5) will be available, new, until the heat death of the universe.

 

I don't know if this is any different for the 5P/5MP, which looks to be a bit bigger, but when I had a LaserWriter 4/600 (Also PLW 300/320) which matches up with the 4p/4mp on a lot of parts, it appeared as if the supply on new/fresh toner cartridges was starting to dry up.

 

But at least it's not the LaserWriter Select 300/360. As far as I can tell, those used a unique (or wildly unpopular) engine and toner stopped being made for it long, long ago.

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I haven't been this excited about AppleTalk since I found the AppleTalk Expansion card for my original, first release Epson Stylus Color on clearance at Staples back in the day.

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I have a regular LaserJet 5M in my office store room.  It's the non-P version, and it has a JetDirect card installed in the expansion slot.

 

Edit:  Also, the contents of the floppy disks had LaserJet III and IV PPDs, but just a regular LaserWriter driver.  So it spits out generic PostScript.  You just need the PPDs.  However, it also had a JetDirect Configuration utility.

Edited by olePigeon

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On 4/10/2019 at 9:03 AM, LaPorta said:

I know for sure our 6MP had direct AppleTalk connection.

That tracks. Up until, idk, probably 2000-01 or so, "m" meant Macintosh (or appletalk, really) compatible in the LaserJet lineup.

 

A LaserJet 2100M, for example, is going to have a Mac serial/localtalk connector.

 

(Just looking around, it appears the 2000 series was the last to be tagged "M", the 4000 series and any above, were Mac compatible in "N" models, typically.)

 

LaserJet 2000 series sort of succeeds the 5P/6P series and the 4000 succeeds the regular 5.

 

On 4/10/2019 at 3:04 PM, olePigeon said:

Also, the contents of the floppy disks had LaserJet III and IV PPDs, but just a regular LaserWriter driver.  So it spits out generic PostScript.  You just need the PPDs.

If I had to guess, a 5 would work "fine" with almost anything if you told the thing/computer you were working with it was a laserjet 4.

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The Laserjet 4V or 4MV was the 11" X 17" capable printer.   Perhaps the SI series supported legal (8.5 X 14) paper?  That's what the specs say for the 4si.   Of course, that may have changed with later generations.   My purchasing for a division days were back in the LaserJet 4 era.

 

The Laserjet 2100 was available in an M model and a TN model.   Looks like they had added N for ethernet, but hadn't dropped M for Macintosh or Postscript yet.

Edited by trag

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