Since I do little printing on paper and I have a variety of printers available in my office, I have so far resisted the idea (mine and my wife’s) of buying a printer for my Home PC. Though my Home PC is fully loaded (P4 HT, 1GB RAM, 180GB x 2, DVD-RW, CD-RW, TV Tuner, 17″ LCD, DSL, FireWire, USB), till now I only had a scanner for an emergency scan and email.

This week, when I wanted to scan and email an important document, the scanner decided to die. Frustrated, the next day as soon as I went into to office, I ordered for a top of the art, HP All-in-One Home device. Yesterday, the vendor delivered HP PhotoSmart 2608, which is a Colour Photo Printer (meaning it can print photos on special paper), Scanner, Fax & Copier. It includes an LCD Display for settings and Photo viewing, USB & Ethernet Interface & multiple memory card slot readers. In Chennai it costs Rs.14,600/-. I installed it today morning and so far happy with the print and scan quality.

Previously whenever I got to install any new device on my home PC (my Systems guys don’t let me do it in the office :-) ), I go straight ripping the package, connecting the power, installing the software and after few hours, turn to the manual. Today, I decided to act wise, I first read everything in the box, including the instructions on how to open the box and remove the printer. Then once I found the setup instructions, I went through it religiously one-by-one, all the way through the 20 odd steps and got the printer installed. It turned out to be a good idea, as, without the proper steps, this could have taken me hours to figure out.

The first time the software installation failed with some crazy MSI error. It offered to uninstall and reboot. I did that and reinstalled the software, everything went fine this time. During the software installation, I noticed two things, that it required Microsoft .NET Framework (and installs it, if it doesn’t find one) and it took more than 30 minutes to complete it (probably on my machine, Windows XP itself doesn’t take this long). When I say 30 minutes on installation, I meant purely the file copy/settings time it took and it doesn’t include the waiting for user response time or detecting the printer, etc. Definitely a long time…

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