Default Printer changes on its own

Posted on 2006-06-16
Last Modified: 2008-01-16
We have several users that sporadically have issues with their default printers changing on them without them doing anything. We've had some that change after printing an email from someone, printers changing while the person is away for a while, even in other applications they are changed. The default printer is fine at boot but can change anytime during the day. We have tried removing all printers on the computer and the drivers and re-adding them all, running spware scans, and virus scans too. This is happening to Windows 2000 users as well as Windows XP but I would have to say a majority of them are Windows 2000 systems with SP4.

When the printer changes, it doesn't switch to the same printer every time - it bounces around to all of our printers on the network.

Please let me know if there is any more information that is needed and I'll try to get it for you.

Thank you.

Beth Carpenter
Question by:mltets
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LVL 44

Accepted Solution

scrathcyboy earned 500 total points
ID: 16925425
You will find there is a discrepancy between the default printer that you set on each local machine, vs. the default printer that is set as "default" on the server, or servers.  When the machine boots, it uses the default printer set in the users boot profile.  But when it logs into the server (perhaps a local directory login, or a custom setup on the server that you assigned each user???), then it changes.  This is a classic problem regarding a mismatch between the system start profile and the server login profile.

Keep looking on the servers for the user profiles, look in their profile name, printhood, and you will find a mismatch between what you have set up on their own computer, vs. their login profile to the server.

Author Comment

ID: 17046251
Our network admins are in the process of testing out login scripts for our employees. When an employee logs in, the login script setups most of the network printers but does not set the default printer for everyone. They have remarked out the printer section to see if that helps the users who are having the problems with their default printer changing. Because it doesn't happen on a regular basis, it may take a few days to see if that has helped.

Author Comment

ID: 17073215
It appears that remarking out the printers from our logon script helped with this problem.  Our biggest problem was not when the user would logon to their computer but after they had been working for a while it would all of a sudden change on them. We will consider this a closed issue since we have not had a recurrence of the problem for a couple weeks now.
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 17075029
Good, it probably was a script duplication somewhere.

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