|A new or fairly recent mboard is a lot less likely to have a parallel port, although some retail models have a header for that rather than a built in port, and you can add a standard wired printer port plate in a spare card slot space. They're most likely to be on an ATX rather than a mATX mboard. |
If the parallel port or the header for one is built into the mboard, you must have the printer port in EPP, ECP, or EPP/ECP mode in the mboard's bios in order for a parallel connected Dot Martix printer, or any printer model made after the early 90's or so, to be recognized by Windows. Usually EPP mode works fine - ECP mode requires that there is a spare DMA channel available - there might not be.
If the mboard doesn't have a parallel port....
- PCI parallel port cards work fine with most printers and most other parallel connected devices, and they already are set to EPP, ECP, or EPP/ECP mode.
- USB to parallel printer port adapters (they have circuitry between the two ends) work fine with Dot Matrix printers, and other parallel connected printers, and they already are set to EPP, ECP, or EPP/ECP mode, but they often support only the printer functions of parallel connected multi-function devices, and they often will NOT work with other parallel port connected devices.
Most more common models of parallel connected Dot matrix printers are already supported by XP, but they are not Plug and Play detectable - you have to select the make and model manually when you use Add Printers. The same probably applies to Vista and Windows 7. If you choose the right model, or if it's not listed, a model that the printer emulates, then you shouldn't have any problem with the printer in 2000 or above. You may have the option of printing the output of the Dos program in XP or Windows 7 instead of via a Dos emulator. E.g. save the Print output to a file. Print the file in XP or Windows 7.