Is there anyway to get a old dot matrix printer working with Windows 7?

by on April 1, 2011

Q: Hello I have an inquiry about an older model printer. I am running on Windows 7, the printer is an Epson PLQ-20D dot matrix printer. I had a little trouble finding a driver for it but found one on the Epson UK website, had some trouble with it and never really got it to work. When I called technical support they said it would not work on any Windows version later than 2000.. ( which didn’t make sense because of the driver on the UK site, right?) anyway, the automatic driver install windows does never found a driver but a couple days ago I plug it in to trouble shoot and boom it finds a driver automatically. BUT when I try to print, the only thing that comes out is an error code “@EJL 1284.4” I’ve looked into it on other forums, but could find no remedy for my situation. Basically I would like to know what I should try to fix. Is this a driver issue? Is it a windows version issue? Is it a printer issue? The website and people at Epson seem to be no help! So yours would be much appreciated! :]

2 Responses to “Is there anyway to get a old dot matrix printer working with Windows 7?”

    It is likely a combination of problems. The main problem being the driver. If a driver is made windows 7 should support a dot matrix printer.

    If the Epson site has the driver available for download you may be able to contact their support department for support with this.

    This is the page from Epson i found with driver downloads.

    Make sure you download the correct version (32bit or 64bit) And there are also a lot of troubleshooting guide in that link that may help. realistically it should just be plug and play.

    Try to reinstall the driver and let me know if you are still having problems.


    Ok, I think everything is fine with the driver. From what I am finding in other forums about the error code “@EJL 1284.4” I’m seeing that I might have to send a ESC/P2 command to my printer.

    I saw this on a forum..

    ESC/P2 command: ESC 01 @EJL [sp] ID\r\n
    Return the printer ID. This is considered a remote mode command, although
    the syntax is that of a conventional command. This returns the following
    @EJL ID\r
    MDL:[printer model];
    DES:EPSON [printer model];

    After all data has been sent, a form feed byte should be sent.
    All newer Epson printers (STC 440, STP 750) require the following command to
    be sent at least once to enable printing at all.
    This command specifically
    takes the printer out of the Epson packet mode communication protocol
    (whatever that is) and enables normal data transfer. Sending it multiple
    times is is not harmful, so it is normally sent at the beginning of each
    ESC 01@EJL[space]1284.4[newline]@EJL[space][space][space][space]

    What I am now wondering is how to send such commands to my printer or if this is even the answer to the problem. I don’t have Microsoft word, I saw somewhere that you could send though there. Is there any other way?