Updated: Jun 4, 2019
HP Laser Printer USB and FTP Firmware Update Procedures
Before you begin: The following instructions will guide you through the update of your printer’s firmware. If this is the first time you’ve ever updated firmware, please do the following first:
Set aside enough time to read this article in its entirety before you begin.
Read the “ReadMe” file from start to finish once it is unzipped.
Clear any updates with your IT department first! Once you’ve performed these valuable steps you are ready to update your firmware.
Downloading the laser printer Firmware File:
1. Go to www.hp.com.
2. Choose the “Support & Drivers” tab.
3. Next choose “Download drivers and software (and firmware)”.
4. Where it says “Enter product name/number,” type the machine name or model number and press enter.
5. This takes you to a list of all the models for this printer.
6. Select the appropriate model.
7. Next you will see a list of operating systems; at the bottom of this list it will display “Cross Operating System (BIOS, firmware, Diagnostics, etc.)”.
8. Select this option to bring you to the page to download the firmware (it lists 3 choices): Windows, UNIX or Mac. Some machines may have the HP Easy Firmware Upgrade Utility for Windows only. Choose the proper file for the Operating system in use. For this article, we are using a Windows-based PC, so we will download the Windows version.
9. Once the file has been downloaded, you will want to run the file. It will unzip to a specified place in your hard drive. Example: C:\Program Files\Hewlett-Packard.
Simplifying the File Path:
To make this process easier, given the need to reference the complete file path in this procedure, we are going to use the following steps:
1. Open the folder on the C: drive where the files were saved to by the unzipping program (WinZip is the most common application used for this purpose).
2. Once you have located these files, there should be two files in the folder: Readme.txt and FileName.RFU.
3. Open another window for the C:\ drive.
4. Move only the .RFU file directly into the C: drive by cutting and pasting or dragging and dropping the RFU file into the C: drive.
5. Rename the .RFU filename to something that is easier to remember by right-clicking on the file and choosing “Rename” from the list, or by clicking on an already preselected file.
6. Pick a name that is easy to remember such as “4015.rfu” (Remember that DOS has a restriction of 8 characters for the filename, plus the file extension). Next, choose either the USB or the FTP update method, depending upon how your printer is connected to the computer or network.
USB HP Laser Printer Update Firmware Procedure
Updating Firmware Through the USB Port (Printer is in a Ready state)
** It is important to note that if anything prevents the firmware update from completing -- such as a cable coming unplugged, a power outage, or “Blue Screen of Death” on the computer – it could cause more harm than intended. If for any reason the upgrade is unable to complete, there is a chance that the printer may not be able to recover and a firmware DIMM, or a Formatter, may need to be replaced (depending on model).**
USB Update Method: Open up a Command prompt. ✔ Windows XP: From the Start Menu, select “Run”, and type in “CMD” and press “Enter.” ✔ Windows Vista: From the Start Menu, enter “CMD” where it says “Start Search” and press “Enter.” A DOS window will appear. • Navigate to the root directory by typing “CD\”, and pressing “Enter.” • Type in the command exactly as it is listed below.
C:\>Copy/B C:\Firmware.rfu \\[Computer Name]\[Printer Name]
Assume that the following is true: ✔ RFU File location = C:\4250.rfu ✔ Computer Name = Work ✔ Printer Name HP4250 For this set of information the command would look as follows: C:\Copy/B C:\4250.rfu \\Work\HP4250
Next press the “Enter” key.
The printer should say “Receiving Update”, and eventually should restart on its own.
Once the printer comes back up to ready, print a configuration page to verify that the upgrade was successful by checking the firmware revision number listed under “Printer Information.” You now have the necessary USB firmware version.
Do not attempt a firmware upgrade if your area is currently experiencing frequent power outages.
Inform all users not to send print jobs during the upgrade.
Experience with DOS is recommended.
Hook up the printer using a USB cable.
Ensure the print driver is installed and working on the computer.
Restart the computer.
Close down any programs that are running in the background.
Ensure you have the following information from your computer: The computer name
Click on the “Start” button.
Go to “Settings” and choose “Control Panel”.
Choose “System” and then click on the tab labeled “Computer Name”.
Write down exactly what is to the right of the “Full Computer Name” line. The printer name
From “Control Panel,” locate the “Printers and Faxes” icon.
Right click on the printer you want to upgrade, and choose “Properties” from the list.
From the printer properties screen, select the “Sharing” tab.
Choose “Share This Printer” in order to allow the upgrade.
Enter a “Share Name” that is easy to remember then immediately write it down.
To perform the firmware update through the USB port, please follow the steps in both the “Downloading the Firmware File”, as well as “Simplifying the File Path” described earlier.
FTP HP Laser Printer Update Firmware Procedure
Updating Firmware Using FTP Protocol Depending on the revision of the FTP firmware update you are doing, you may have to follow both the “Downloading the Firmware File” and the “Simplifying the File Path” described earlier. “FTP Update Method 1” only required “Downloading the Firmware File,” whereas “FTP Update Method 2” will require following both steps because the update is done using DOS.
Inform all users not to print to the printer while you are doing the firmware upgrade.
Make sure the printer is in a ready state.
Verify the Ethernet connections are properly connected.
Restart your computer and close any unused programs running in the background on the computer.
Turn off the OS embedded and any software firewalls -- these will block the update from going through the network -- the hardware firewalls should never need to be taken down.
Before you begin:
** Please note that if you follow these instructions and if for some reason they do not work as described, consult the IT Department. FTP communication intra-network may be considered malicious activity and many Network Administrators block this type of communication on their networks.
Internet Provider Firewall- Cannot be turned off.
Hardware Firewalls - Embedded in the network hardware (Router/Web Servers).
These should not need to be disabled in order for the firmware update to work:
(Personal firewall) 3rd party/Software firewalls
Must be turned off to perform upgrade.
Protects at the computer level.
A program that runs in the background of a computer.
Filters certain network activity, and will prompt you to allow or deny access to the network upon any new or unrecognized network requests.
These can usually be turned off by opening the program and switching off the firewall.
(Personal Firewall) Operating System Embedded
Must be turned off to perform upgrade.
Protects at the computer level.
Windows XP and Vista have an embedded firewall that is turned on by default.
Prior to turning off firewalls, discuss the changes with the IT department involved. Please know that turning off firewalls can leave a computer open to malicious attacks and computer viruses, and are done at your own risk. A firewall is essentially a filter that blocks unwanted Internet traffic from reaching the network and computers, while still allowing outward communication with the Intranet/Internet. Most networks have multiple firewalls, and the firewalls can be implemented in various forms, which are listed below:
1. Right click on “My Network Places” and choose “Properties”.
2. Right click on “Local Area Connections” and choose “Properties”.
3. Select the “Advanced” tab, and select “Settings”.
4. In the “General” tab select “Off (not recommended)” and press “OK” or “Apply” to save the setting.
1. Open the “Control Panel”.
2. Select “Network and Sharing Center”.
3. At the bottom left corner of the window, choose “Windows Firewall”.
4. Find the “Windows Firewall” setting and choose “Change Settings”. Select “Off (not recommended)” and press “OK” or “Apply” to save the setting.
FTP Update Method 1 (approximate processing time of 3 to 4 minutes):
1. Follow the instructions at the beginning of this article titled “Downloading the Firmware File”.
2. Locate the folder where the program used to unzip the file put the RFU file.
3. Open a windows Internet browser.
4. In the address bar or Internet Explorer, type in the printer’s IP address and press the Enter key (for this article we will be using 192.168.1.12).
5. The address bar should now read: “http://192.168.1.12/hp/device/this.LCDispatcher”, the information in red doesn’t always appear, and will need to be removed for the next steps.
7. Delete anything after the IP address, and press “Enter.”
8. The page should display a “Ports 1” folder. If this does not happen, it will probably display instructions telling you to select the “Page” button and choose “Open FTP Site in Windows Explorer”.
9. Locate and open the folder with the RFU file.
10. Drag and drop the RFU file anywhere into the internet browser, and the update should begin automatically.
11. The printer’s display should read “Receiving Upgrade”.
12. Once the upgrade is complete the printer will restart automatically on its own.
FTP Update Method 2 (approximate processing time of 3 to 4 minutes): Because we are using DOS for this procedure, it is necessary to follow both the “Downloading the Firmware File” as well as the “Simplifying the File Path” instructions at the beginning of this article.
Open a Command prompt:
• Windows XP: Open the “Start” menu, select “Run”, and type in “CMD” and press “Enter.” • Windows Vista: Open the Start Menu, enter “CMD” where it says “Start Search” and press “Enter.”
Type CD\, to get to the root directory.
Type the following command “FTP (IP Address)” (You can get the IP address off of a network configuration page). An example of the full command: C:\>FTP 192.168.1.12
It will prompt you for a Username and Password. Leave them blank and press the “Enter” key for each.
It will scroll through some command lines, after it finishes you should have a prompt that shows “ftp>” after this type “PUT” and then the file location, and the complete file path. It should look like this: Ftp>PUT C:\FRED.RFU
The printer’s display should read “Receiving Upgrade”.
Once the upgrade is complete the printer will restart automatically, on its own.
Troubleshooting in DOS: If you are using DOS to send the firmware update and you get an error, here are some quick tips:
If you get a “Syntax Error”, Check the use of your “\” and “/”, if the wrong context is used, it will prevent DOS from recognizing the command.
Remember the 8.3 rule. File names as well as folders cannot be more than 8 characters long, plus a 3 character extension.
DOS does not like long extensions. Follow the instructions and shorten up the file name as well as the path. It is easier to just put the file in the C: Drive.
Watch extra spaces, DOS does not like them. The sample has the correct number of spaces. C:\Copy/B C:\4250.rfu \\Work\HP4250 C:\>FTP 192.168.1.12 Ftp>PUT C:\4250.RFU If you encounter additional problems, please contact your IT Department.
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