These instructions apply to Windows users who need help with the installation and setup of their Zebra thermal printer (such as the Zebra GC420d) in order to print from ShipStation. If you're installing the printer on your Mac, please read this article.
Setting up your Zebra printer to print in Windows requires three simple step:
- Download & install the correct printer driver
- Add the printer to your Devices & Printers Control Panel
- Configure the printer's preferences
For most Zebra printers, we recommend installing the Seagull Scientific driver.* When installing the driver, make sure your printer is not connected to your computer.
*Note: the Zebra ZP500, ZP500Plus, and ZP505 models require the FedEx specific driver.
Download & install the printer driver
Download the correct driver for your model Zebra printer, or the Seagull Scientific driver linked above.
Once downloaded, launch the .exe file from your downloads folder and follow the onscreen instructions.
Once you've installed the driver, plug the printer back into the computer. Your computer will now automatically match this printer to the installed driver.
Add your printer to your Devices & Printers Control Panel
Go to the View Devices & Printers section of your computer's Control Panel.
If you have trouble locating your Control Panel, check out this article on the Microsoft help site.
Click Add a Printer and select your Zebra from the list of connected printers.
Next, you'll need to configure the print settings to make sure that your labels will print out the right size and quality.
Configure the printer preferences
This short gif illustrates the next steps, with detailed steps below:
In the Devices & Printers window, right-click (or control-click) the Zebra printer, and choose Printing Preferences.
On the Page Setup tab, check that your Stock Name (paper size) is set to the correct paper size (this example uses 4 x 6, but yours may be A6, 100mm x 150mm, or something similar).
Go to the Graphics tab to set dithering and resolution.
Typically, the Resolution should be 203 dpi, however, certain models of Zebra may use 300 dpi. Check the Zebra support site for your specific printer's specifications.
Set Dithering to None.
Finally, go to the Options tab.
Click Absolute in the Darkness settings and slide the darkness to 13. This is the recommended darkness, but you may find that you'll need to adjust these settings slightly depending on carrier, OS, or printer model.
Click Apply then Ok, and your printer is ready to print!
If you plan to print using ShipStation Connect, please review the article How do I install ShipStation Connect on Windows?