To save paper, I print 2 pages on one side in landscape mode, and read both sides by flipping on the short edge.

enter image description here

Without trial-and-error (choosing one direction randomly, then printing the result), how can I most efficiently deduce which of the 4 possible positions is correct? To wit:

enter image description here

  • These days, many printer drivers are already smart enough to do that for you. Did you verify the options in the GUI of the driver? It might help to tell us the manufacturer and model of your printer. – virolino Sep 17 '19 at 9:08

Before you print, put a pencil mark on one of the edges of the paper that has been loaded and remember which edge it was. Thus, when you print the page you'll know exactly which side you need to load the paper next time.


  1. This is a trial-and-error unless you are printing double-sided.
  2. You need to do the mark test only once to figure out which way your printer prints.
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  • This is the best method as there is no standard way printers turn the image when they print it. – Willeke Oct 28 '18 at 10:51
  • Apologies for asking now, but I'm dumb. How does 'put a pencil mark on one of the edges of the paper' unveil 'which side you need to load the paper next time'? – Accounting Sep 1 '19 at 1:02
  • Can you please respond in, by editing, your answer? Comment chains are cumbersome to read. – Accounting Sep 1 '19 at 1:03

If you're lucky, the printer uses an icon like this one to show paper orientation:

printer icon

The A ( or horizontal lines) show that the paper is printed-side up, and the folded corner shows the paper orientation.

Most copiers have these icons on the infeed for originals, my printer also has them in the paper bins.

For printing more pages on one sheet of paper, have a look at the printer dialog. On my HP printer, it indicates the orientation when you switch on the 'more pages on one sheet' option:

enter image description here

The folded corner matches the other paper orientation icons.

The dialog also allows me to select on which edge I want to flip the pages. Generally, if your printer is capable of two-sided printing, the printer dialog contains all the settings you need.

If your printer can only print on one side of the paper, it becomes more complex: you have to print one side, then insert the stack into the infeed again in the correct orientation to print the other side. And you have to set the printer to print the correct pages (1-2, 5-6, etc) which is time-consuming.

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  • Sorry; I still don't understand. How does this unveil which orientation? – Accounting Sep 17 '19 at 5:17
  • Yes. But how does that help? Sorry for being hare-brained. – Accounting Sep 17 '19 at 7:11
  • I see now, your question is more complex that I assumed. I'll write a better answer later today. – Hobbes Sep 17 '19 at 7:12
  • Hi again! Have you had the chance to edit your answer? – Accounting Oct 16 '19 at 3:20

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