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How to Install Canon CanoScan N656U Driver on Windows 7

Updated on December 12, 2011


I have been a proud owner of the Canon CanoScan N656U flatbed scanner for many years. I bought this scanner almost five years ago, and it is still functioning well.

Recently I bought a new computer running on the Windows 7 operating system, and I tried to install my trusty Canon scanner on the new computer.

I faced a major problem because the scanner was no longer supported by Canon, so I could not find any CanoScan N656U scanner drivers for Windows 7.

I'm sure some of you may be facing the same problem, which is why you found this page.

Don't worry, this page will show you how to install a Canon CanoScan N656U Scanner on your Windows 7 computer.

The solution was pretty simple. Just install Windows XP drivers!

Download The Files You Need

The first thing you need to do is to download the necessary drivers and files.

You will need to download two files. The first file is the Canon CanoScan N656U driver for Windows XP. The driver will allow your computer to control your scanner.

The second file is the Canon ScanGear Toolbox utility, which you can use to scan documents.

  1. Go to the CanoScan N656U scanner driver download page.
  2. Look for the Operating System drop down and choose "Windows XP".
  3. Download Scanner Driver ScanCraft CSU v5.7.1a
  4. Download CanoScan Toolbox v2.2.3


Here are the steps to perform the installation:

  1. Unplug the scanner from your computer
  2. Run the application CanoScan_N650U_N656U_CSUv571a.exe.
  3. You will be asked to unzip the files to a folder.
  4. Go to Start - Control Panel - Device Manager
  5. Under Imaging Devices, you should see an item called CanoScan with a yellow question mark icon.
  6. Right click on CanoScan and then "Update Driver Software"
  7. Windows will ask you where you want to find the drivers. Choose the second option, "Browse my computer for scanner software".
  8. Select the folder where you unzipped the driver files from step 3.
  9. Windows will proceed with the driver installation.
  10. You may need to restart your computer.

Next you need to install Canon ScanGear toolbox. This is optional if you already have other software that can handle scanning.

  1. Double click the file S141_en.exe.
  2. You will be prompted to unzip the files. Choose a folder like C:\Temp
  3. Go to the folder where you unzipped the files (example C:\Temp). Click on the disk1 folder.
  4. Run Setup.exe and follow the installation wizard.

Plug in your scanner and it should be ready to use!


I'm glad Windows 7 was able to use the Windows XP drivers for the CanoScan N656U scanner. Good job on the backward compatibility!

Some of the newer scanners may come with better DPI resolution and may scan faster, but I'm glad I can continue digitizing my documents and bills with my trusty old scanner.


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      MisterEd51 3 years ago

      If you have Windows 7 Pro or Ultimate 64-bit you can download for free Windows XP Mode. After you bring up Windows XP Mode you can install the CanoScan N656U driver and ScanGear Toolbox with no problems.

      I have Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit and it works fine in Windows XP Mode. I also installed Arcsoft PhotoStudio 2000.

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      Blizz 4 years ago

      THIS didn't work for ALL windows in 64bit!

    • profile image

      Blizz 4 years ago

      Did not work for me too, at step 8 windows did not find the driver although there are here.

    • profile image

      Azwar001 5 years ago

      Didn't work. I've tried everything - the best I get, when running Scangear, is a choice box "Select Source" with no options to select.

      I'm running W7 ultimate - what versions did work?

    • profile image

      Peter 5 years ago

      Worked perfectly :))

    • profile image

      Blake 5 years ago

      Same problem as others. Windows cannot find the driver software after pointing it to the downloaded files.

    • profile image

      Brad 5 years ago


      Unfortunately, it didn't work for me. A couple of problems - first, in step one you say to disconnect scanner from computer, however, CanoScan and the yellow question mark icon don't show up in Device manager (step 5) unless scanner is connected to computer.

      Second - when I follow the rest of installation steps w/scanner connected, I got message saying 'Windows could not find driver software for your device'.

      Any suggestions?


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      Max 5 years ago

      Don't work(((

    • profile image

      Joe Figueiredo 5 years ago

      Followed your instructions. However, encountered a problem when I directed Windows to find the driver software in a particular folder containing the unzipped software.