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How to adjust printing modes for your printer


© St. Petersburg Times, published October 12, 1998

Q. I purchased a computer with Windows 95 installed. I have added some programs that use my Canon BJC-4000 printer in the graphics mode. I prefer to print in the character mode, but I don't know how to select the character mode.

A. Try this: From whatever application you are printing from (i.e. Word), select File, then Print from the menu bar. This will launch the print dialog (rather than just printing immediately). From the print dialog, select Properties in the printer option box. From there the printer-specific property options will be presented. Look for Graphics/Character mode setting. And select the appropriate setting. (These properties vary for different printers based on their software drivers -- different printers will have different property settings.)

Q. My system tray is becoming overloaded with icons. How can I remove them without impairing the performance of the program?

A. The best way to remove these tray icons is through their associated program. Start by right-clicking the tray icon and see if it offers an option to remove it. Next, run the application (usually by double-clicking the icon) itself and see if it has any options to turn the tray icon off. Most professional programs will provide this functionality. Lastly, to prevent the program from running at startup, look in the Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup directory to delete the associated program's shortcut. Next check the "Load=" and "Run=" lines in the Win.ini file. The remaining place where programs can be set to run at startup is in the registry key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run. Run RegEdit. Make sure you make a backup of your registry file first (from RegEdit menu bar: Registry, Export Registry file). Now, navigate the above key. Click the application to select it and then from the menu bar, Edit/Delete. Exit RegEdit and reboot.

Q. Whenever I start my computer, right after the windows 95 plus screen, nine C prompts appear. Sometimes, a blue screen appears bearing the message: "There are no spare stack pages. It may be necessary to increase the setting of Minsps in System.INI to prevent possible stack faults. There are currently 6 stack faults allowed."

A. This error occurs when Windows 95 encounters an internal overflow of the stacks used by 32-bit Windows device drivers. This is not related to the "Stacks='" line in the Config.sys file, which is used for 16-bit MS-DOS device drivers. Stack overflow conditions are indicative of errors in the device driver. Windows 95 sets aside a number of extra memory pages (spare stack pages) to be used temporarily to prevent a system crash because of a stack overflow condition. The default number of spare stack pages is 2. If Windows 95 detects that it has run out of spare stack pages, the warning message stated above is displayed. Windows 95 continues to operate normally unless a device driver encounters a stack overflow condition when there are no free spare stack pages.

To resolve this situation, add the following line to the [386Enh] section of the System.INI file and then restart your computer: MinSPs=4

If the problem persists, increase the number of spare stack pages. Each spare stack page requires 4 kilobytes of memory.

Q. After loading some additional Windows 98 components, I received the following error message upon rebooting: 'This program has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down. If the problem persists, contact the program vendor.'' I have no functionality at this point.

A. I would start with the registry. Reboot and press the F8 key before you see the Windows 98 page. Choose the "DOS Prompt Only" option. Run ScanReg. This program will scan your registry for possible corruption. If it says that it found and fixed any problems, reboot and see if you still have problems. Otherwise, if ScanReg did not find any problems, choose the Restore registry option. Windows keeps backups of your register from the last several boots. Choose one with the latest date from before you experienced the problem. Upon reboot you should be back to normal. Without more details I cannot tell you what actually caused the problem -- but this should get you working again.

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