A+: Incorrect/Incompatible Printer Driver

Gibberish printing can have several causes, but one of the most common is a corrupt or incompatible printer driver.

To install a new printer driver for an existing printer, you can use the New Printer Driver wizard (start it with the New Driver button on the printer properties sheet’s Advanced tab). This wizard displays Windows XP printer drivers for a wide variety of printers, and includes the option to load a driver from a driver disk or folder.
The Device Manager cannot be used to install or update printer drivers; this must be done within the printer’s Properties page.
This method might not work for printers that use a setup program to install the driver, as is common with many inkjet printers. To install a new driver in these cases, download an updated driver from the vendor’s website, uncompress it as directed by the vendor, and run the setup program. You might need to turn off the printer before running setup, as most printers that use a setup program require that the driver be installed before turning on (or connecting) the printer.

If a printer continues to produce gibberish printing after updating the driver, check for cable or port damage.