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Troubleshooting scanner-related communication and installation problems in Mac OS X


  • Epson Scanners and All-In-One products compatible with Mac OS X.
  • Scanner software operation problems
  • Scanner-related error messages


If you are experiencing issues on Mac OS X, either with installing your scanner or starting a scan from the Mac, then there may be a communication issue between your computer and the scanner. Other indicators of a communication-related issue include software error messages, and it may be the cause of other scanning issues such as poor image quality.

The possible causes of a communication-related issue and the troubleshooting steps are outlined in this article. We also recommend following this article if you have experienced problems in successfully installing your scanner on your Macintosh computer.

For trouble-free operation, we recommend ensuring that you are running the latest version of your edition of Mac OS X. Download and install any available system updates and restart the Mac before starting the troubleshooting.

  • You can check the specific OS Version via Apple icon Apple menu > About This Mac.
  • You can check for updates via Apple icon Apple menu > Software Updates.
Supported Mac OS X Versions for Epson scanners and All-In-Ones
OS Last update version Notes
10.0.x n/a Not supported
10.2 (Jaguar) 10.2.8
  • Some products require a minimum of 10.2.4, 10.2.6 is preferred.
  • Most current products require a minimum of 10.2.8.
10.3 (Panther) 10.3.9 Supported. Both PowerPC and Universal Binary versions available.
10.4 (Tiger) 10.4.11 Supported. Both PowerPC and Universal Binary versions available.
10.5 (Leopard) 10.5.8
  • Most recent Epson Scanners and All-In-One products have support for Leopard.
  • All Scanners/All-In-One products with scanner driver support in 10.4.x have support in 10.5.x, the previous drivers being suitable to use in the new environment.
10.6 (Snow Leopard) 10.6.8 (support ongoing)
10.7 - 10.10 -
  • The most recent Epson Scanners and All-In-One products have support for Leopard.
  • Due to Apple no longer supporting 'Rosetta', only Universal (Universal Binary) drivers are suitable to use in Mac OS 10.7 and higher. Epson Scan version 3.1 and higher. 


To troubleshoot the scanning issues, follow the steps below.

Notes Icon Note:

This article is most applicable to Epson scanners and All-In-One products which are connected to the Mac via a USB (or for some scanners, FireWire) cable connection.

If you are using an Epson Wi-Fi enabled All-In-One wirelessly, the steps to check this direct cable connection do not apply to your setup.

  1. Isolating the issue: standard checks

    1. Check that there is power to the scanner.

    2. Check for any error lights. If a red, amber or flashing indicator light are displayed then attend to these first. Refer to the scanner's user guide or see the following article for help: What does the scanner's Start button light indicate?

    3. Check the data cable (USB, or FireWire) connection at both ends.

      • Skip to step 2, "Test the scanner operation", if you have an All-In-One with an integrated wired Ethernet or wireless interface and are using it over a network.

      Otherwise, connect the scanner's data cable directly to a port on the Mac.

      • Do not connect the scanner via a third party device such as another FireWire device, an external USB hub or switch, a USB extension cable, or a USB port in a keyboard.

      • Use a data cable that is no longer than 1.8m. Anything longer than this can reduce reliability.

    4. Open the System Profiler from Applications\Utilities. In the Apple System Profiler, check if the USB or FireWire scanner is detected.

      If the Epson scanner appears: The scanner is detected by the Mac, therefore the issue is related to the Mac OS or the driver installation.

      If the Epson scanner does not appear: There is a physical communication issue as the scanner is not detected on either the FireWire or USB Bus. Check the data cable connections again.

      • As the System Profiler does not update itself quickly, if you reconnect the data cable you should allow it a few minutes to update.
      • If this fails, disconnect all other USB or FireWire devices and restart the Mac with only the Epson scanner directly connected to a port on the Mac.
      • Epson also recommends changing the data cable for a different, known-working cable. If the Epson scanner is not detected in the System Profiler, test the scanner on a different computer (Mac or Windows) where possible.
      • If you are using a scanner which has both a USB and FireWire port, you could try using the other interface connection. Allow the System Profiler a few minutes to update after reconnecting the device or restart the Mac.

      Accessing System Profiler in 10.1, 10.2:

      Click on Devices and Volumes tab. Check under either USB Information or FireWire Information depending on the way that your scanner is connected to the Mac. If any devices are detected, they will be listed here.

      Figure 1: Devices and Volumes tab

      Example of Devices and Volumes in the System Profiler

      Accessing System Profiler in 10.3, 10.4, 10.5, 10.6, 10.7:

      Click on the Hardware branch to expand the list of devices below. Click on either USB or FireWire depending on the way that your scanner is connected to the Mac. The USB Device Tree appears on the right, listing the devices including scanner detected on the USB Bus. Any detected FireWire devices, including scanner, will be listed in the information window on the right under FireWire Bus.

      Figure 1: USB Device Tree in the System Profiler (10.3)

      USB Device Tree in the System Profiler, 10.3

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  2. Test the scanner operation:

    If the scanner is detected and there are no error lights displayed, test the scanner's operation using EPSON Scan. This is located in the Applications folder.

    If the scan fails with an error message, please follow any advice or search the Epson Knowledge Base for a solution.

    If you have an All-In-One with an integrated wired Ethernet or wireless interface and are using it over a network, see the following article for advice:

    Alternatively, you could test the scanner with Image Capture, the native TWAIN-compliant application in OS X. For a guide, see the following article: How to scan with Image Capture application in Mac OS X

    If scanning is possible, this should rule out both a hardware and a communication issue and may be indicative of a driver installation problem. In this instance, we suggest fully removing and reinstalling the scanner software using the procedure detailed below.

  3. Check the scanner driver version

    Many scanner drivers, utilities and applications are available to download free of charge from the support pages of the Epson UK website. Epson periodically updates software and we recommend ensuring you are using the latest and correct scanner driver (Epson Scan or Epson Twain, depending on your product).

    Some known issues are detailed below. We recommend that you continue to follow this troubleshooting, but be aware of these known issues and update the installed version of Epson Scan if possible.

    Mac OS 10.5

    When using EPSON Scan v. 3.1 and 3.2 only, a crash or freeze may occur

    Affected products:
    Perfection V500 Photo, Perfection V200 Photo, Perfection V700 Photo, Perfection V750 Pro, Stylus Photo RX685, Stylus Photo RX690, Stylus Photo RX585, Stylus Photo RX610, Stylus DX9400F, Stylus CX9300F, Stylus DX8400, Stylus CX8300, Stylus DX7400, Stylus CX7300.

    For more information, see the following article:
    Epson & Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) Support page

    Using Image Capture, push button scanning, or using after the scanner has been in stand-by mode

    Affected product:
    Perfection V200

    Mac OS X
    (all versions):

    Versions 2.xx and 3.xx of EPSON Scan cannot run simultaneously on the same Mac OS X system

    • This limitation means that between these two versions, only one version of EPSON Scan can be installed at any one time.
    • If you have more than one scanner/All-In-One (or one of each), check if a later version of Epson Scan is available so both products can be installed on your Macintosh system.

  4. Uninstall and reinstall the scanner driver

    Follow the instructions in the following article: How to fully remove an Epson scanner from Mac OS X (OS 10.2 - 10.7)

    Once you have removed the scanner software, follow the steps in the same article to reinstall the driver. Generally, we recommend that you download and install the latest driver from the Epson Support website.

    Notes Icon Note for Mac OS X Lion (10.7) users:

    Mac OS X Lion onwards.

    • For some USB scanners in Mac OS 10.7 (Lion) onwards, the driver may already be available within the operating system and will be installed when you connect your Epson product to the computer and power it on.

    • For most Perfection 'V' series scanners and network-enabled All-In-One products, we recommend continuing to the Epson website to download and install the latest software for your product.

    • For more information including device compatibility and driver information, see the following article: Epson and Mac OS X Lion (Mac OS 10.7.x)

    Make sure that you follow all the steps in the above article after you have installed the scanner driver. When complete, power on your Epson product; it should now be ready to use. Try testing the scanner software again. For products using Epson Scan, open it directly from Applications\Epson Scan.

  5. What to do if the troubleshooting fails

    If scanning fails, test the scanner on a different computer system (we recommend using Windows instead of OS X, or a different version of OS X) where possible. This will help determine where the problem lies.

    • If you can successfully use the scanner on a different computer, the problem is with the Mac system and we recommend contacting your computer supplier or Apple for support.

    • If you are still unable to scan when using a different computer, we recommend taking the scanner to a local Epson Express Centre to test the connection or contact Epson for support.

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