Unable to install printer.  The operation could no be completed. - HELP!

Posted on 2007-07-26
Last Modified: 2007-10-18
I'm not able to display the printer properties for any of the printers installed on the machine (local or server). So I tried to reinstall the printer and no luck.

The machine is a Windows XP w/ SP2 machine.  When I try to install the printer I get completely through the Add printer Wizard and after the drivers copy over I receive the following error "Unable to install printer.  The operation could no be completed."

The print spooler service is started and i've tried removing all of the drivers via Properties > Server Properties and removing all of the installed drivers.

I'm trying to install a local HP LaserJet 4250tn printer via an IP port.  I can't install ANY printers.

The other weird thing is that the machine is showing a printer installed from the print server and when I simply try to print from Internet Explorer from File > Print, the printer shows up in the printers box but I receive a message stating that before I can print I need to install a printer.

I'm at a total loss... Can't find any good info online...

Question by:heymanr
    LVL 63

    Accepted Solution

    1) Try from a New Windows User profile, and make sure it has Local Admin rights

    2) Try doing

    SFC /scannow from a DOS box - You may need the XP instal CD.

    3) Worst case you may require a repair install of windows XP.

    I hope this helps !
    LVL 11

    Expert Comment

    Stop the spooler service and delete any files in C:\Windows\System32\Spool\PRINTERS just to make sure there are no corrupt print jobs.

    I'd probably go through HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Printers and remove any connections and references to printers etc. you find in there.  Backup the registry before doing this of course.

    Author Comment


    THANK YOU!!!  I ran the system file checker and this resolved my issue.  The Event Log showed this as the fix.

    Windows File Protection scan found that the system file c:\windows\system32\compstui.dll has a bad signature. This file was restored to the original version to maintain system stability.  The file version of the system file is 5.1.2600.2180.

    Did a little research on the file and turns out this is the property sheet that displays the printer driver stuff...

    All is well again!

    Thank you!

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