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How to centrally store print drivers.

Posted on 2004-10-07
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I don't know if this is a dumb question or not but how do you store print drivers in a central location.  I have 4 terminal servers and the people that access it from home only hit 1 of the 4 servers so it has more drivers on it than the others as well as an updated ntprintsubs.inf file.  My question is, since we want to be able to allow them to log onto any of the 4 servers, how can I centrally store the print drivers?

Sorry, I only have 60 points left.  When I get a refund on another question, I will bump it up.
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Question by:The_Master_Chief
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by:masterbaker
ID: 12252810
There isn't any way I know of to centrally store print drivers (or any drivers for that matter).  You will probably need to install the same printer drivers on the other 3 servers.

Wish I had a better answer for you.  I do feel your pain!

Jeff
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by:The_Master_Chief
ID: 12253884
That's what I was thinking, but is there an easy way to copy the drivers over to the other machines (all 2000 server sp4) without having to reinstall the drivers one at a time?
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by:masterbaker
ID: 12253930
The printer drivers are stored under the C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32\SPOOL directory, but that's not the only thing to move.  The registry is also modified in several locations when new drivers/printers are installed.

You could experiment by shutting down the spooler service on the "good" server and a "to be dumped on" server and then mirroring the spool directory structure from "good" to "TBDO" and see what happens.  Make sure to backup the directory first.  Then launch the spooler services again and then connect in remotely to see if it sees the drivers.  Worth a shot I guess.

Jeff
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by:The_Master_Chief
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I can try that.  Is there any documentation that states what reg entries need to be moved over as well?  
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by:masterbaker
ID: 12254885
This article might give you an idea of where to look.  It shows how to delete printers manually, but that should also tell you the registry settings to make...

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;135406
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by:The_Master_Chief
ID: 12303116
As promised, increase in points.
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by:The_Master_Chief
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I have done what that article said to do.  I am going to test it out.
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by:masterbaker
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Good luck!  Please post the results.  This is quite an interesting setup you are trying to do.
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by:The_Master_Chief
ID: 12360940
OK I finished my test.  It did not work.
I installed a print driver for my home printer on Terminal A adn then,
I stopped the spooler services on Terminal A and Terminal B.  I exported this registry key from Terminal A HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print

I then copied the spool dir from Terminal A to B and imported that reg key to Terminal B also.  Both servers are the same OS.  I thought that I could then log in from home and my local printer would be connected, since I had transferred the driver files and reg settings over to the new server but it did not.  I guess there is no easy way to move drivers other than install.
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masterbaker earned 250 total points
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One other thing you could try is to launch regedit and export a copy of your registry (the entire thing).  Then install the printer driver and export your registry again.  Now do a file comparison of the two (fc regfile1.reg regfile2.reg).  Maybe there are some other entries you need to make.

You could also take a whole snapshot of your directory structure on the C: drive before and after.  Just go to a command prompt window, go to C:\, and type 'dir /s c:\file1.txt'.  Then do this again after the installation and use the fc command to compare the two.

Jeff
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by:The_Master_Chief
ID: 12967395
I couldn't actually find a solution for the problem but you get the points for helping me out.
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by:masterbaker
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Sorry I couldn't help you get the answer.  I do appreciate the points for my time though - very thoughtful! :)

Jeff
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