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  • Printing woes in a complex environment

    Guys -

    We have a very strange infrastructure at the moment so please bear with me - we're in the transient period of a migration from one W2k3/WXP environment to another.

    The old environment:

    One "Forest Root" domain with nothing in it except the bare minimum.
    Five child domains, one for each of our business units. Domain and forest are in Windows Server 2003 functional level.

    The new environment:

    One "forest root" domain as above. (Call it Forest A)
    One child domain with ALL users in it, and all file resources. User and machine accounts and their group memberships are synched using SID history (via the Quest migration tool) to the original accounts in the old environment.

    One forest root domain and child as above; (call it Forest B) - identity management creates equivalent user accounts to those in Forest A but in a disabled state. These are not synched to the accounts in Forest A. Forest B houses applications; such as Exchange and so on. It seems to work OK although there are problems.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Printing is hosted on the old environment (let's call it "Legacy" from now on) at the moment; and is achieved by the migrated client machine mapping to the printer queue on the legacy server. The print queues are listed in the legacy AD but are mapped by migrated users via server name. SID history ensures they have access.

    Some drivers are not working, or are ceasing to work - and it's very difficult to see any common factors between the failures. The symptom is that suddenly clients will lose the ability to print to that printer; the error message being "The driver for this printer is not installed". When you try to get the printer properties, you either get very limited functionality or it crashes the local workstation spooler service.

    Once this has happened, the problem also occurs on the server; and even removing the driver cleanly leaves the server in a terrible mess. For instance; it happened on one print server which also happens to be a DC. All the LaserJet 4250s stopped working. It turned out that this particular time, both the 4250 PCL6 driver and the 4250 PCL5e driver were installed and in use; but this had been the case for some time. When users started reporting the problem, it proved impossible to select the PCL5e driver which was conflicting with the PCL6 driver; and any printer with the PCL6 driver was showing the problem "the driver is not installed". Printers already using the PCL5e driver were working fine!!!

    So - I set them all to Laserjet 5, and removed BOTH PCL6 and PCL5e drivers via "server properties". This seemed to work; and I reinstalled the PCL5e driver on a dummy queue. After this, every time I reset one of the problem queues to use the PCL5e driver, it paused for a good few minutes and then crashed the server's spooler service!


    This sort of problem suddenly started happening on a number of print servers about a month ago. Can anyone think of a Microsoft patch which may have caused this, or perhaps know this problem already and know where to start diagnosing it? It happens for migrated users and non-migrated users alike; it happens on any client on any site; it's not tied to one make or model of printer; it's not related to the "Print Processor" setting... I'm at the end of my wick!!


    Thanks


    Tom
    For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

    Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

  • #2
    Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

    Clutching at straws... do you by any chance have any Edimax devices on your network, and more importantly is there any Edimax client software installed on the servers in question? We experienced similar problems on an SBS03 server when we had the Edimax tools for a print server installed on there. IIRC, we uninstalled the software - that fixed the problem, and dipped the print server in the chromic acid bath in the factory overnight - that made us feel a lot better
    Gareth Howells

    BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

    Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

    Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

    "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

    "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

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    • #3
      Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

      Sorry mate I didn't see your reply here. Dunno how I missed it.

      No we don't have any EDIMAX - I don't even know what it is LOL.


      Tom
      For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

      Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

        EDIMAX is an acronym for "cheap and totally not cheerful"

        Presumably you have networked printers though - what make are the printers or the network print servers? If it happens with Edimax it could well also happen with other low end manufacturers...

        When we had the problem, it sporadically dumped stuff to the event logs... so, anything in the event logs?
        Gareth Howells

        BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

        Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

        Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

        "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

        "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

          LOL

          "The spooler service terminated unexpectedly. It has done this (1) times."

          The printers we MOSTLY have problems with are the HP LaserJet 4250, 4250dn and 4250dtn.

          We also have issues with the LaserJet 4700, LaserJet 4600 and LaserJet 4650.


          Tom
          For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

          Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

            Hmmm I'm not sure but I almost would say, stop spooler remove drivers, goto c:\windows\system32\spool and clean all stuff out there and reinstall the drivers again...

            But luckely it crashes unexpectedly...
            I always thought a crash was always unexpectedly... otherwise it wasn't a crash...
            Marcel
            Technical Consultant
            Netherlands
            http://www.phetios.com
            http://blog.nessus.nl

            MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
            "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

            "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
            "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

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            • #7
              Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

              Worth a try. I certainly don't think that cleanly installed HP drivers would act up like this.
              Gareth Howells

              BSc (Hons), MBCS, MCP, MCDST, ICCE

              Any advice is given in good faith and without warranty.

              Please give reputation points if somebody has helped you.

              "For by now I could have stretched out my hand and struck you and your people with a plague that would have wiped you off the Earth." (Exodus 9:15) - I could kill you with my thumb.

              "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you." (Genesis 9:3) - For every animal you don't eat, I'm going to eat three.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Printing woes in a complex environment

                Personally, I would shift the attention from AD and focus on the actual Server where the Printers are installed.
                Agree with Dumber in re-installing with the latest Drivers (or even better Get rid of HP )
                I've had my share of HP drivers nightmare.
                You can use the Cleanspl.exe for the RK tools to clean up the spooler.

                Ta
                Caesar's cipher - 3

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