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I have an Epson DM-D110 display pole connected to COM1. When Windows XP starts up and shuts down, a small bit of random character data is sent to the display pole. Some times it's the fish symbol, it varies from time to time. This wouldn't really be so much of a problem except that the next time I need to use it, all the text is offset from that point and the display no longer makes much sense.

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closed as off topic by Ward, mailq, Massimo, SvW, MDMarra Jan 19 '12 at 13:43

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Issue an reset sequence before using it. Problem solved. It is just a 2 liner in any programming language and you can even do it with type and piping to com1: on the command prompt. –  mailq Jan 16 '12 at 22:18
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1 Answer

Try using the /fastdetect:COM1 switch in the c:\boot.ini file.

Available switch options for the Windows XP and the Windows Server 2003 Boot.ini files
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/833721

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