- – Introduction to scanners
- – Installing a scanner
- – Keep using your old scanner with Windows XP/Vista/7/8.1/10
- – A mouse that is also a scanner
- – Scanners not supported by Windows 7/8.1/10
- – Third-party scanner software advice if you are not satisfied with the software that came with your scanner
Introduction to scanners
Image scanners come in several types – drum, flatbed, film, and hand scanners. All multifunction printers (MFPs) contain a flatbed scanner.
Installing a scanner is much like installing a printer. The manual that comes with the device should provide you with the necessary information. The maximum optical resolution that a scanner supports is the most important specification. The artificial computer-generated interpolated resolution is not of much importance.
A scanner’s scanning optical resolution is measured in dots per inch (dpi). A scanner with an optical resolution of 1,200×2,400dpi can capture 2,880,000 (1,200×2,400) pixels of information from a square inch of a document being scanned. Most magazines are only printed at 300dpi, so scanning their pages at higher resolutions than that won’t increase the detail that is captured any higher than that. However, if you are scanning film, you should use a scanner with a minimum optical resolution of 2,400dpi.
See this page for the technical information on how a scanner works:
Installing a scanner
You shouldn’t have any problems installing a scanner by following the instructions that come with it if you haven’t installed a USB printer or scanner before.
“The Scanner and Camera Installation wizard is primarily designed to install drivers for older scanners and cameras—and some networked scanners—that aren’t automatically recognized by Windows.
“Before using the wizard, connect your scanner or camera and turn it on. If Windows recognizes the device and installs the appropriate driver, you’re all set. There’s no need to run the wizard.”
Working with the Scanner and Camera Installation wizard [Windows 7 but the information can be applied to Windows 8.1 and 10.] –
Keep using your old scanner with Windows XP/Vista/7/8.1/10
If you have a perfectly good scanner that doesn’t work with a newer version of Windows, OS X or Linux, either because there are no new 32-bit device drivers for 32-bit versions of Windows or because there are no 64-bit drivers for your scanner for 64-bit versions of Windows, the following link provides information on an excellent tool that supports “2949 scanners from 35 manufacturers on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.” –
A mouse that is also a scanner
Note that you can now buy a mouse that runs scanner software. The actual scanner is not required, just the mouse and the software. You just have to run the optical mouse over what you want scanned – a map, document, etc. – and you see on your screen what it has scanned. You just have to keep running the mouse over the blank areas until they are filled in. This means that you can scan large maps and documents very easily. The software that comes with the above-mentioned scanner-mouse can crop the image to your liking and do many other things. To find out what is on offer use the search query mouse scanner on Amazon.
Scanners not supported by Windows 7/8.1/10
If you can’t obtain the device drivers for a particular make/model for Windows 7/8.1/10, try using VueScan Scanner Software. “Is your scanner no longer supported by your operating system? Or are you looking for more functionality from your scanner than it came with? Download VueScan. It replaces the software that came with your scanner – so you get better scans and a longer life for your hardware.”
Third-party scanner software advice if you are not satisfied with the software that came with your scanner
The scanner software that is provided with a particular make/model of scanner might not be satisfactory to some users. The following forum thread provides some useful advice on third-party scanner software and a workaround that allows you to use your existing word-processor and graphics software instead of scanner software.