HP messes up their printers – twice

HP is getting publicity for their printers in all the wrong ways with two faulty firmware updates. One update stops HP Printers from using non-HP ink cartridges while another update stops some printers working at all!

“Dynamic Security” for HP Printers

HP’s update to printers add what they call “Dynamic Security” – which is now in the running for “Weasel Words of the Year

So-called “Dynamic Security” stops the printer working if non-HP branded ink is installed.  As simple as that.  Any other reason is just a distraction from HP’s latest effort to extract money from customers.

According to HP support page “Dynamic Security”

“HP uses dynamic security measures to protect the quality of our customer experience, maintain the integrity of our printing systems, and protect our intellectual property.”

It’s only further down that HP’s real purpose becomes clear.

“Updates can improve, enhance, or extend the printer’s functionality and features, protect against security threats, and serve other purposes, but these updates can also block cartridges using a non-HP chip or modified or non-HP circuitry from working in the printer, including cartridges that work today. ”

HP can’t even say “you must buy HP cartridges” …

“ If you are using a non-HP cartridge, please check with your supplier to ensure your cartridge has an original HP security chip or unmodified HP electronic circuitry.”

Back in 2016, Office Watch reported on HP’s last attempt to force customers to use more expensive ink. HP tried a stealthy approach by pushing out a firmware update but setting an effective date months later when the cartridge block went into effect.  The error message didn’t mention HP branded cartridges.  Many customers didn’t realize that the update some months ago has caused the new error messages.  Eventually, HP was caught out and had to rollback the tricky update.

This time they are being more open about the update and its effect, though the talk about ‘security’ is just nonsense and an insult to their customers.

HP Printers ‘bricked’

Another recent firmware update (the same one?) has completely stopped some HP printers working at all – with or without a HP brand cartridge.

All customers get is an error message “83C0000B” on the blue screen.

Source: BennyBoos on a HP forum

As you can see, there’s no buttons available to try anything like a factory reset.

Affected printers include HP OfficeJet 902x models, including HP OfficeJet Pro 9022e, HP OfficeJet Pro 9025e, HP OfficeJet Pro 9020eAll-in-One, HP OfficeJet Pro 9025e All-in-One Printer.   Reports are coming in from all over the world.

HP is working on a fix. It’ll be interesting to see how they’ll send out an update to printers that can’t even fully start.

This HP firmware failure is being well reported by Bleeping Computer.

What to do about printer updates?

We’ve been suspicious of printer firmware updates for a long time and recommend turning OFF automatic updates.  Only update the firmware if there’s a specific known bug you need to fix.

Most printer firmware updates are self-serving to the printer makers and make little or no difference to the customer.  The update might fix obscure bugs or add some trivial feature but little else.

See Save money on printer ink, toner and consumables for other tips.

HP’s crowded web pages

A final note about HP’s support pages that after a minute or two become so crowded people can’t read the text.  The ‘Information’ box at left can be closed.

An unreadable HP support page after being open for a minute or two.

The ‘Tell us what you think’ has no obvious close button and makes the page itself impossible to read with a page refresh.  Nice job, HP.

HP backtracks on cartridge block
HP printers reject ‘foreign’ cartridges

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