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Apple’s Big Sur struggles with Lexmark printers

March 10, 2021

Apple’s flagship operating system, Big Sur, is causing problems with some printers as well as other issues.

Apple’s Big Sur Mac operating system arrived on 12 November with a host of new features and a new design. But like every new operating system there are some bugs and glitches and a few impact on printing.

“Filter Failed” seems to be a common problem reported by Big Sur users. Users with Lexmark C543, Lexmark B2238 and Lexmark CX310 printers are reporting the “Filter Failed” problem. A work around suggested on the Apple discussion board suggests the fix for the ‘Filter failed’ problem is to delete the printer and then upload the driver yourself. However, not every printer manufacturer has produced printer drivers for Big Sur yet. In which case select the “Generic PostScript Printer” driver. You will print, but not with all the features.

If you want to reset the printing system which deletes all printers from your list of printers as well as information about all completed print jobs, and all printer presets.

  1. On your Mac, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Printers & Scanners.
  2. Press and hold the Control key as you click in the list at the left, then choose “Reset printing system” from the menu that appears.
  3. After you reset the printing system, the list of printers in Printers & Scanners preferences is empty.
  4. Re-add any printers or the “Generic PostScript Printer”

Big Sur users also report problems with Epson, Canon and Brother printers as well.

But it is not just printers… Here in The Recycler office we have upgraded to Big Sur and (touch wood) our Mac’s work with our printers. Our issue is that Microsoft Word and Outlook need an awful lot more memory for Big Sur to work effectively. Just ordered €300 worth of memory, so hopefully that will fix the problem.

Here is the rub, not every printer OEM keeps their drivers up to date, so your printer may, or may not work. Options are to use the “Generic PostScript Printer”, wait for the printer driver, or buy a new printer.

Our advice is to check out the OS update to ensure compatibility before you install it. It will be cheaper than buying a new printer, or in our case memory.

Who is to blame?  We could argue Apple or the printer OEMs, or both. But it may me a case of “upgrader beware”.

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