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Thread: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

  1. #1
    James Lavery Guest

    Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers in
    my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus ver
    8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.

    Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from HP.
    All the printers are HP 4050's and up.

    One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze up.
    Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and restart
    the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.

    I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks

    James




  2. #2
    tophre Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    I ran into something similiar with Win2K server, I moved the spool directory
    to a volume with more disk space and it solved our problem Have you tried
    that?
    Chris


    "James Lavery" <james.lavery@dfs.virginia.gov> wrote in message
    news:evMTRQPfFHA.1284@TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...
    >I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers
    >in
    > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus
    > ver
    > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    >
    > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from
    > HP.
    > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    >
    > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze
    > up.
    > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and
    > restart
    > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    >
    > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > James
    >
    >
    >




  3. #3
    Ron Gabaree Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Hi James,

    This sounds very much like a print driver issue. A few thoughts:

    You might remove all HP Network Printing programs and replace them with
    native Windows IP Printing.

    Also....are all of the printers HP? You might contact them about the issue
    to see what they tell you about having multiple copies of their drivers on
    the server. There may be incompatibilities. My hunch is that this will
    either be a driver issue or a network issue to the printer.

    My .02....


    I hope this helps....

    "James Lavery" <james.lavery@dfs.virginia.gov> wrote in message
    news:evMTRQPfFHA.1284@TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...
    >I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers
    >in
    > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus
    > ver
    > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    >
    > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from
    > HP.
    > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    >
    > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze
    > up.
    > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and
    > restart
    > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    >
    > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > James
    >
    >
    >




  4. #4
    Andrew Morton Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    I encounter the same problem since updating WS2003 to SP1. This is with an
    Epson and a Xerox printer attached via USB, I've never installed an HP
    printer on this computer.

    So, it doesn't look like it's specific to any one printer manufacturer's
    drivers.

    The spool folder is on a drive with several GB free.

    Andrew



  5. #5
    Manny Borges Guest

    RE: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Sounds like a driver issue .

    A common gotcha is to delete the printer instance from the printers folder
    and then reinstall. This doesn't remove the driver.

    http://support.microsoft.com/default...b;en-us;135406



    "James Lavery" wrote:

    > I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers in
    > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus ver
    > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    >
    > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from HP.
    > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    >
    > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze up.
    > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and restart
    > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    >
    > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > James
    >
    >
    >
    >


  6. #6
    James Lavery Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Andrew

    This was my line of thinking also. I never had these problems on my windows
    2k SP3 print servers. This problem only cropped up after installing 2003
    SP1. The one location in my network I've not yet upgraded to a 2k3 printer
    server seems to still be working fine. I'm going to try everyone's
    suggestions just to be thorough but my sneaking suspicion is this is an MS
    spooler issue.

    Two other observations I've received from the people that use the printers
    are as follows.

    1. If the printers run out of paper and more is added the print queue will
    not start printing again even though the printer has returned to ready
    status.

    2. Someone also noticed that if a printer is off and a job is sent to the
    queue, once the printer is turned on it will not start printing.

    In both of these cases users have to call me and I have to restart print
    spooler service in server 2k3.

    The problem is not limited to the cases above but they are two instances we
    can consistently recreate the problem.

    J

    "Andrew Morton" <akm@in-press.co.uk.invalid> wrote in message
    news:OcihvWUfFHA.3616@TK2MSFTNGP12.phx.gbl...
    >I encounter the same problem since updating WS2003 to SP1. This is with an
    >Epson and a Xerox printer attached via USB, I've never installed an HP
    >printer on this computer.
    >
    > So, it doesn't look like it's specific to any one printer manufacturer's
    > drivers.
    >
    > The spool folder is on a drive with several GB free.
    >
    > Andrew
    >




  7. #7
    James Lavery Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Ok, I've taken the advice of everyone that has been kind enough to post so
    far. Here's what I've come up with.

    There was no change after deleting the printer and it's drivers from the
    server and reloading. I even deleted the old port and recreated a new one.

    I have deleted printer and driver from several client test machine and had
    my group policy recreate the printers. This didn't seem to have any effect
    on the printing issue.

    Here's what I have found since the last post:

    Because I was remoting into the servers I'm trying to fix I didn't see the
    following message that was only displayed on the console. "The printer
    spooler was unable to connect to your printer. This can be caused by you
    printer being turned off, the cable being unplugged, or being connected to a
    VPN, which will block you access to your local network"

    When this message is displayed on the servers console nothing from the print
    queue in question will print until the message is responded to. "Ok" is the
    only option. Once you respond to the message printing will resume. So now
    my question is how do I get this message to go away on its own or never be
    displayed in the first place. I have over 50 printers, they run out of
    paper, toner, trays get left open and left off line all the time. I don't
    want to have to respond to that message every time there's a printer
    problem. I just want the queue to resume sending to the printer when the
    printer brought back on line.

    Any thoughts?

    J



    "James Lavery" <james.lavery@dfs.virginia.gov> wrote in message
    news:evMTRQPfFHA.1284@TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...
    >I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers
    >in
    > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus
    > ver
    > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    >
    > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from
    > HP.
    > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    >
    > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze
    > up.
    > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and
    > restart
    > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    >
    > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > James
    >
    >
    >




  8. #8
    Andrew Morton Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    > There was no change after deleting the printer and it's drivers from the
    > server and reloading. I even deleted the old port and recreated a new
    > one.



    Been there, done that. As you report, no difference.

    > Because I was remoting into the servers I'm trying to fix I didn't see the
    > following message that was only displayed on the console. "The printer
    > spooler was unable to connect to your printer. This can be caused by you
    > printer being turned off, the cable being unplugged, or being connected to
    > a VPN, which will block you access to your local network"


    Error message? What luxury! I don't even get an entry in the event logs.

    > Any thoughts?


    A career in gardening?

    It seems to me that in SP1 something changed which makes communication
    between the print spooler and the printer driver a little bit flakey -
    sometimes a page has just finished printing and is still in the queue but
    the spooler doesn't seem to get the message that the job has finished.
    Sometimes a page has printed and been deleted from the queue but the next
    page won't start.

    Is there any way to have a separate instance of the print spoiler^Wspooler
    for each printer? Then it would only affect one printer at a time.

    Andrew



  9. #9
    Rknapke Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Have you found an answer to you problems?? I have a W2K3 server without SP1
    and I am having similiar problems. I have moved a few printers back to a W2K
    server and the problem has stopped. I don't think it is a SP1 issue since i
    haven't installed it yet. Please let me know if you have any more thoughts.
    Thanks
    Rich
    Sorry if this posted twice, computer lock up.

    "Andrew Morton" wrote:

    > > There was no change after deleting the printer and it's drivers from the
    > > server and reloading. I even deleted the old port and recreated a new
    > > one.

    >
    >
    > Been there, done that. As you report, no difference.
    >
    > > Because I was remoting into the servers I'm trying to fix I didn't see the
    > > following message that was only displayed on the console. "The printer
    > > spooler was unable to connect to your printer. This can be caused by you
    > > printer being turned off, the cable being unplugged, or being connected to
    > > a VPN, which will block you access to your local network"

    >
    > Error message? What luxury! I don't even get an entry in the event logs.
    >
    > > Any thoughts?

    >
    > A career in gardening?
    >
    > It seems to me that in SP1 something changed which makes communication
    > between the print spooler and the printer driver a little bit flakey -
    > sometimes a page has just finished printing and is still in the queue but
    > the spooler doesn't seem to get the message that the job has finished.
    > Sometimes a page has printed and been deleted from the queue but the next
    > page won't start.
    >
    > Is there any way to have a separate instance of the print spoiler^Wspooler
    > for each printer? Then it would only affect one printer at a time.
    >
    > Andrew
    >
    >
    >


  10. #10
    SaintCheap Guest

    RE: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    Hi James,

    Have you found out any solution yet? I have exactly the same problem, but my
    one is Win 2003 and has no service pack installed.

    Andy

    "James Lavery" wrote:

    > I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers in
    > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus ver
    > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    >
    > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from HP.
    > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    >
    > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze up.
    > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and restart
    > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    >
    > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    >
    > Any ideas?
    >
    > Thanks
    >
    > James
    >
    >
    >
    >


  11. #11
    infinityqp@gmail.com Guest

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    I am also having this problem with Win 2003 Server, no SP1. Any help
    would be greatly appreciated.

    SaintCheap wrote:
    > Hi James,
    >
    > Have you found out any solution yet? I have exactly the same problem, but my
    > one is Win 2003 and has no service pack installed.
    >
    > Andy
    >
    > "James Lavery" wrote:
    >
    > > I have a 3 Windows 2003 Standard Servers working as the new print servers in
    > > my domain. The servers are all dual Xeon 3.2 GHz, 2 GB ram, 2 Intel Server
    > > adapters in a failover team. They are running Symantec Corp. Anti-virus ver
    > > 8.0 patch 10, and are current with MS updates.
    > >
    > > Each server has between 15 and 20 network printer queues. All have the
    > > latest drivers installed using the "Install Network Printer Wizard" from HP.
    > > All the printers are HP 4050's and up.
    > >
    > > One or twice a day (no pattern as to when), the printers seem to freeze up.
    > > Print jobs still come into the server's spooler, but they stop printing to
    > > the printer itself. The services are not stopped, but if I stop and restart
    > > the Print Spooler service, printing resumes as normal.
    > >
    > > I have tried recreating the ports, reinstalling the drivers on the server,
    > > flashing the firmware on the printers, reinstalling the printers on the
    > > workstations, cold booting the printers, excluding the
    > > C:\WINDOWS\system32\spool folder from any anti-virus scans.
    > >
    > > Any ideas?
    > >
    > > Thanks
    > >
    > > James
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > >



  12. #12
    Randy Guest

    RE: Spooler unable to connect

    This error is being reported all over - have not seen a single 'fix' for it
    that works....

    "The print spooler was unable to connect to your printer....." same as
    other's in these posts, we now have to click OK to clear the error many times
    every day. There IS no error, as soon as you clear the message box, printing
    resumes.

    Has anyone come up with a solution? We can't tell if it's a MS update or
    what has happened - we're getting it on our Server 2003 print server and the
    error is also occuring on on an NT 4 print server now as well. Never had it
    before.

    Any ideas GREATLY appreciated, we're now stuck watching the server all day
    to clear the errors so that printing can go on!!

    THANKS,

    Randy



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    1

    Re: Server 2003 Print Spooler Issues

    I have the same issue using a W2K3 SP2 server for my print server. I did find an article relating to the errors being generated on the work stations trying to connect to the queues on the server....
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/890642

    I hope this helps some of you. I have yet to implement it as I just came accross it and saw this post approx the same time searching for a resolution...

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