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ScanSnap Not Working with El Capitan? There’s Hope

If you own an older Fujitsu ScanSnap, you may have discovered that it’s no longer supported by El Capitan. My ScanSnap S300 falls into that category. The quickest way to check out the El Capitan compatibility of your ScanSnap is by heading over to the DocumentSnap website, which has summarized the El Cap compatibility of many ScanSnap scanners. If your scanner is no longer supported, don’t give up hope.

UPDATE (2015-10-25) – I neglected to mention that my problems started with a clean install of El Capitan on my MacBook Pro. I did an in-place upgrade to El Capitan on my iMac, and the ScanSnap S300 continued to work without any changes on my part. If you’ve done a clean install, though, the tip below may help.

I struck out with the official software for the S300, as my Mac couldn’t even see the scanner. I then remembered how in the past I had gotten the S300 working on the Mac by hacking the drivers. The S300 was a Windows-branded scanner that was identical in every respect to the Mac’s S300M, except for the color of the plastic. The hack involved using the S1500M drivers, and making one small change to the S1500M drivers to remove a “kill pill” Fujitsu had inserted to Mac prevent users from using one of its “Windows” scanners. That hack later became unnecessary, when Fujitsu’s updated Mac drivers did away with that artificial distinction. Would those S1500M drivers save me again?

I tried out the software for the S1500M earlier today, and, lo and behold, it worked with no modifications. Specifically, I downloaded and installed ScanSnap Manager for Mac V3.2L31. I had previously installed the ABBYY FineReader software, so I don’t know whether the S1500M installer will get you that or not.

I’ll be in the market for another ScanSnap soon, but it’s nice to know I don’t need to thrown a perfectly good scanner onto the trash heap.