|You must install the printer software the right way.|
Usually you install the software BEFORE you plug in it's USB cable. You may be prompted to plug in the cable after some of the software has been installed, or after restarting Windows after all of it has been installed.
NOTE that sometimes the resident module(s) of anti-malware programs - a part that runs all the time scanning for suspicious activity - will interfere with the proper installation of third party software, the software will not install properly, and you may get no indication of that at all while installing the software.
To avoid that possibilty, you should always DISABLE the resident module(s) of anti-malware programs, BEFORE you install third party software (software other than most Microsoft Updates, etc., that did not come with Windows ), especially when it's a major or complicated software package.
E.g. if you are using the free or paid version of AVG, you should disable the Resident Shield in AVG's 's settings in Windows. In Norton (Symantec) products, there may be several things you need to disable, or set so they don't load for a specific short amount of time.
If you don't know how to do that, tell me which anti-malware software you are using.
When you are sure the software has installed correctly, re-enable the resident module(s).
Printers always have associated files that must be installed properly along with the actual drivers. If you install only the actual drivers, it's likely the device will NOT work properly.
Unless the instructions for installing a device tell you otherwise.......
You DO NOT install drivers for a device while booting into Windows, if the software for the device has not been installed yet - when Windows detects a generic device or New Hardware while booting, you allow it to search for drivers, it doesn't find any, and it wants you to show it the location of the drivers - CANCEL that, continue on to the desktop, and install the software for the device using the proper installation from a CD or the proper installation file that you downloaded from the web.
If you DID install drivers that way,
(The following also applies if you want to re-install the software)
- go to Control Panel - Classic View - Add/Remove Programs and Un-install the software you installed, reboot, DO NOT install drivers while booting.
Install the software properly by running the proper download you got from the web, or if you have the CD that came with the printer, run the software installation from the installation program on that.
You must have the printer plugged into a USB port that it can work with properly. E.g. it may NOT be recognized properly when it's plugged into a port on the front of a desktop case
Rarely, if the computer is a desktop computer, you may need to fix an IRQ sharing problem - in that case, all other devices that are plugged into USB ports may work fine when they are plugged into a USB port they can work with properly, yet the printer isn't recognized properly.
Troubleshooting USB device problems
See Response 1:
Check that out first.
Rarely, not all the ports on the back of a desktop case may be able to supply 500ma each.
(The printer doesn't require 500ma but doing this may help.)
If you have a desktop computer, Note that I answered a Topic on this site recently where a guy had an external drive, which does require the full 500ma, connected to a port on the back of a desktop case - it would not work properly when a webcam was in the port next to it, but it worked fine when the webcam was unplugged. Ports on the back of a desktop case often have two ports connected to the same USB controller module that are ports one above the other - you could try connecting the cable to one of those and leaving the other un-used.