My scanner froze and stopped working. How do I fix it? : LUSENET : TurboChargeYourTurboButton : One Thread

If your scanner stopped working in Windows 9x, it may be that you have several imaging programs that are conflicting with each other. It could also be that your driver files are corrupt, or that your registry has conflicting data.

This is what you should do:

1. Close all the windows you are using (be sure to save whatever work you are doing if you can).

2. Disconnect and reconnect your scanner's AC cord. You should hear your scanner do a self-test. If does not do a self-test, there may be something wrong with your scanner. Call the manufacturer or person who sold it to you. (A good reason to send in your warranty cards when you buy an electronic product). If your scanner completed the self test when you reconnected it, go to step 3.

3. Click on "Start", "Control Panel", and "Scanners and Cameras". Select your scanner. Click on "Properties". Click on "Test Scanner or Camera". If your scanner starts making noises, you are doing good. You will eventually get a message saying "Your Scanner or Camera Successfully Completed the Diagnostic Test". (Why the title case, I don't know). Open the program you were using and try scanning your picture/graphic/document again. If, however, the button "Test Scanner or Camera" is disabled, or if your computer freezes, go to step 4.

4. Reboot machine by following this sequence: Start/Shut Down/Restart/OK (why you have to click on the "Start" button to shut down, I don't know). Repeat step 3 (except for the "go to step 4 part"). If this does not work, go to step 5.

5. Delete the "twain.dll" and "twain*.dll" files in you "c:\windows" directory. Be careful when you are in the windows directory and do not delete anything else besides these two files. Empty all the files in your temp directory. Make sure you do not need them. (Put them in a temp2 or backup directory if you are unsure). If you do not have a temp directory, create one. Put the driver file in your temp directory. Your driver should be in the CD-ROM that came with your scanner (the file should end with the "INF" suffix, i.e., *.INF). If you don't know what file it is (and I myself sure could not find it in all the bundled mess that came with the scanner's CD-ROM), you might have an easier time going to the manufacturers web site, clicking on "downloads", "scanners", and doing a search with your scanner's model name (each site may differ, you will have to find your way around the particular manufacturer's web site). Download it to your "temp" directory. Driver files are small, usually about 1 to 2 kilobytes. Downloading should be fast and easy. Decompress the file (you may need to use Winzip if it is a zip file) and execute it if turns out to be an .exe file. If it is an .exe file, follow the instructions given to reinstall the driver. Look for a readme file if the instruction do not come up during the setup process. If the file you downloaded was a straight *.inf file, or if the setup process only decompressed files and did not end with a message saying "driver successfully installed", go to step 6. If you did get a message saying "driver successfully installed", go to step 1.

6. Click on "Start", "Settings", "Control Panel", and "Add New Hardware". Click on "next", "next" until you see a window saying "searching for hardware devices", giving a list of usually irrelevant devices. Click on "no, the device isn't in the list", then "next". Windows wil then tell you if you want Windows to search for your new hardware. Unless you want to be there all day, click on "no, I want to search from a list". Then click on "next". You should then get a window saying "select the type of hardware you want to install". Select "imaging device". The window will then say "this wizard will help you... to begin installation, click next". Click "next". You should then see a list of specific devices by brand and model number. Be sure to match the right brand with the right model number. If you do not see it, do not select anything. Click on "have disk", "browse", and go to the "c:\temp" directory. The *.inf file should show itself. If there is more than one *.inf file, see which one has a name that has clues of your scanner's model number. You should return to a window listing model numbers. Be sure to reselect your particular model number otherwise you will be unsucessful (another retarded Windows bug). Click on "next". You will then see a list of ports. Be sure to select the proper port. If you are using USB, selct "USB". If you are using the printer port, select "printer port", etc. Click "next". Follow the steps until you get some sort of confirmation message. Be patient. (If your screen freezes for more than five or ten minutes, you may have to reboot and repeat step this step). When you are done, reboot the machine and repeat step 1.

If none of this works, contact the manufacturer.

I hope this helps, and if anyone has comments, suggestions, experience with another operating system, or war stories, they are welcome.

-- N. David G. (, April 15, 2000


In step 6 I left out a little thing: be sure you click "OK" when you find the right *.inf file in your temp directory. Also, to execute an *.exe file, all you need to do is click on it, and this should start the program, which, in this case, would be the setup program for the scanner. If the file ends in *.zip, you will need a decompression program such as Winzip. You can download Winzip for free at If you feel I left something out, or if you have a question about any of the above, be sure to submit it.


-- N. David G. (, April 15, 2000.

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