To troubleshoot communication problems with a Lexmark printer, begin by removing the power supply cord and then reconnecting it to the printer. This diagnostic sometimes fixes minor communication issues.
Next, check the cables and their connections. Reconnect the USB or the parallel cable to the printer and the computer. If the printer is using the parallel port, check and confirm that the computer is set up for bi-directional communication. If not enabled on the computer, set the parallel port mode setting in the computer CMOS setup to either bi-directional or enhanced capability port.
Scanners or other sharing devices can also be the cause of communication problems. In the case of a parallel connection, verify that the cables, scanner or other sharing devices are IEEE-1284 compliant. When using a USB connection, ensure that it is at least USB 1.0 compliant. If the printer functions properly without the connections to the scanner or sharing devices, then there might be a problem with the scanner or sharing device.
Some software can interfere with the printer communication. Check by placing the computer into the selective start-up mode. Also, try reinstalling the printer from scratch to restore the connection. Install the latest versions of the printer drivers to prevent any compatibility issues. If the printer does not work even when directly connected to the port of the computer, and all the above steps are taken care of, then there is a possibility of a hardware issue.