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Both network printers can't print...sometimes.  Printer error: Printer off line or unavailable reboot fixes it

Posted on 2004-11-10
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Last Modified: 2010-04-14
I have a windows 2000 PC with all the latest service packs and security updates. The PC was humming alone fine when one day the user called and said that there are pop ups all over the place. I went and looked and there was some add ware/ spy ware installed. I purchased "SpySubtract" and "AdSubtract" (bundle), and it seemed to fix the problem. Now, though, ever since then, through out the day, (it seems like after about 4-5 hours of work) that when the user tries to print to one of the printers she gets an error: Printer is off line or unavailable.  The other printer however she can print to fine.  She reboots and all is well for the rest of the day. Some times it is just printer1 that she gets this message, some times it is just printer2, some times it is both at the same time, some times it is one after the other. The PC has Office 2000 and as for the spy/add remover software I had on there I have since removed (to see if that was the problem), as well as installed a new network card... HELP. I really don't want to reload because it is a production system critical PC...
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Question by:berliner70
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luv2smile earned 2000 total points
ID: 12548486
Well for spyware/adware I wouldn't recommend the software you purchased. Instead I would run the free programs AdAware and Spybot (and if you want to spend money...purchase the pro versions of these) as these seem to be the industry standards for detection and removal.

Download:

Adaware http://www.lavasoftusa.com/software/adaware/

And

Spybot http://www.safer-networking.org/en/spybotsd/index.html

Make sure you update these programs before you run them.

Run each program indivdually in both safe mode and normal mode and delete everything that they find.
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by:luv2smile
ID: 12548513
So I would start with that to help make sure your system is clean. Spyware can cause printing problems so I would try to eliminate that possibility before trying to troubelshoot further.
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12548526
I tried Spybot and adware (free version and they did not do anything). Next time (hopfully there won't be), I will buy and try. My problem is not the spyware anymore (I think). I have the printer issue.
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12548541
So I could still have a spyware problem??
You both suggest that I buy Adware and SPy bot and try to clean it?? There is a funny thing that When she opens up IE 6 to MSN a pop up tries to open up.
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Expert Comment

by:luv2smile
ID: 12548563
The free versions of Adware and Spybot are perfectly fine...they will detect the same things as if you purchse them. The pro versions just contain more advance features such as real time protection.
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Expert Comment

by:luv2smile
ID: 12548589
So how is she connecting to the printers? I assume they are mapped thru a log in script or something like that?

Does anyone else have any kind of problems connecting to these same printers? I assume not since you haven't mentioned it.

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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12548626
She is connected to the printers by:
Printer one is through JetDirect
and Printer2 is through Some sort of a Canon port (it for a Canon copier that prints).
No one else has had any problems with printing...
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12548647
Just an fyi... Spybot and adware did not find any real problems... so that was why I had to buy that software by Intermute...
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Expert Comment

by:luv2smile
ID: 12548705
For spyware issues, read over this thread:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web/Browser_Issues/Q_20975384.html

It offers lots of advice and all the tools that you'll ever need (all free) to clean up your system. I personally use Adaware, SpyBot, and HiJackThis all together to clean systems.

For your printer issue, have you done the following::

Made sure the drivers are updated
Uninstalled and re-installed the printers
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12548726
Yes, Drivers are updated, and I reinstalled the printers. Keep in mind that the user has had this PC for about 1 1/2 years and it has workd fine with every thing it currently has. Up untill two weeks ago when this problem occured.
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Expert Comment

by:luv2smile
ID: 12548910
I wonder if it is a winsock problem. Here is a winsock fix program...it says it is for XP, but I think it works for 2000 as well.

http://www.spychecker.com/program/winsockxpfix.html
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12557662
I will try that ASAP. Probably later on today or in the morning. I will get back with you all as soon as I find out if that worked...   (Cross my fingers)... The fix right now if to have the user turn of the PC at lunch and back on (since the problem starts after about 4 hours of use)...
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Author Comment

by:berliner70
ID: 12596088
OK so here is the scoop. The winsockfix did not work. It messed up the PC so bad that after the reinstall of the old reg entries I still had to reinstall JetDirect and the AS400 emulator software.
I did also install Adware (requomended by Lov2smile), after I realized I installed and anti addware called No Adware. So the adware found a bunch of stuff and the user said she has had no problem yesterday. I will get back in touch with every one here On thursday to figure out where the points go. It looks like Luv2Smile came up with the fix, but I want to try it another two days...

 
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