I have 6 Win98 Dell boxes on a domain network. All the machines are part of the same domain. The printers in question are all HPs on the same domain and also all hardware involved is on the same subnet and segment of the wan. When I go to install a printer via the "START" button, "Settings", then "Printers" the systems lock up. This happens if I try to add a printer via the control panel also. The machines just freeze, no blue screens or errors listed.
I know that the hardware is good on the main machine I am troubleshooting. I am able to print from a DOS prompt to LPT1. However, I can only do this if I boot to a command prompt. I cannot print from a command prompt inside the Win 98 shell.
I should also note that there are win2k boxes on this network and there is no issue printing at this time. It is not a permissions issue. Some of the printers are local and directly connected to the printer via a parallel cable.
I have extracted and reinstalled all the "spool" system files. I have had the virus scanner avoid scanning the windows/system/spool folders as well as any file with the term "spool" in it.