Universal printer drivers are used for legacy printers. they are also called generic printer drivers. These drivers generally use standard or universal language for sending print commands as compared to more specialized or customized command set used by manufacturers. This way of operating printers has its own merits and de-merits.
Universal printer driver is a quick and dirty way to get everybody printing quickly without worrying about the operating system. mostly, medium to large networks and virtualized server farms use this technique effectively.
They do come handy when the models and operating systems of computers in your company network are different or undocumented.
On the other side, you will not be able to use most of the modern printing functions with generic or universal printer drivers. It is good for only what it says it is good for. printing that is. nothing else. Like a printer with fax and scan functions will not fax or scan with help of universal printer driver.
Some manufacturers do not adhere to standard printing commands. These printers are not designed to be used with universal drivers. Printing from such printers using universal drivers might cause to print odd characters and loss of formatting done in word processor. these gibberish characters are called artifacts. there is no way to remove them at the moment.
Using a Universal Printer Driver is matter of convenience, If it does all you need, it is the best option for you and your company. Other wise there will always be a printer specific driver for you operating system.
You can also try our Universal Driver CD we shared an year ago.