How to (Maybe) Get Your Brother Printer Working with Windows 10

Apr 29, 2016
1) Install the most recent Brother drivers for the most recent Windows version available for your printer. Windows 10 will ignore this driver and still use the generic Unidrv print driver from Microsoft, which may not support all of your printer's features.

2) Open "Devices and Printers" from the Control Panel or by other means.

3) Turn on your printer if it was not on beforehand and its icon is not present. Right-click on your printer's icon, and select "Printer properties."

4) Navigate to the "Advanced" tab.

5) There will be an entry stating "Driver:" To its right there will be a drop-down menu of available drivers. The Brother driver for your printer may say "Brother HL-xxxx series," while the generic driver may say "Brother HL-xxxx."*

6) Select the Brother driver from the drop-down menu, then press the "OK" button and your printer should have full functionality.

* If you are unsure of which is the Brother driver and which is the generic Unidrv driver, highlight your printer and click on "Print server properties" (don't worry, it doesn't mean a networked print server). From the "Print Server Properties" window, click the "Drivers" tab. For each driver stating "Brother HL-xxxx, click the "Properties" button. The generic driver should list the driver file as UNIDRV.DLL. The Brother driver might have the prefix BROHL-. The driver that does not use UNIDRV.DLL should be the correct driver.


I've only tested this on my HL-1440 printer, connected via USB 1.1, to a system running Windows 10 x64, Threshold 2 aka Windows 10 November Update aka Windows 10 Version 1511. Could others test this out on their systems and post their results? I'm also curious if this works on MFCs.

I'm using drivers written for Windows Vista 32-bit, and they're from 2007. Why does it work on Windows 10? Presumably, it's a Windows Driver Model (WDM) driver, and therefore works across all Windows operating systems supporting WDM. This means that, in theory, it should work from Windows 98 and Windows 2000 up. I also assume this works with drivers from other printer OEMs. It's unclear why Brother doesn't publicize this to its customers.
Last edited:
Feb 12, 2015
are the brother models currently on the market fully compatible with windows 10 x64 stable build?

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