Terminal server printing


We have a terminal server 2003 and we're finding it difficult when people buy new printers, there is no driver for us to install to work with TS.

What recommendations can you suggest?
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Hypercat (Deb)Commented:
There is really no way to guarantee that a printer will work with TS except by making sure that the printer is compatible with Windows 2003 Server.  A great number of printers that are compatible with XP and/or Vista also have Windows 2003 drivers available.  However, if you're dealing with people who are purchasing (out of their own pocket) home-user level printers and then trying to use them while connected to a terminal server, you're going to run into problems.  So, if the users in question are in remote offices where the company has some control, you should require that any printer purchases be pre-approved if they want to be able to print to those printers from their TS sessions.  With home users, you can advise them that they should check with the company first to ensure compatibility, and that if they don't do that you can't guarantee that the printer will work when they're connected to the office.
Every manufacturer, has a website, hp.com, lexmark.com etc. I am assuming that hypercat meant that you contact manufacturer prior to purchasing to ensure it works with TS and your OS. This is important as a lot of the newer printers aimed at home users, will not work with TS.
Hypercat (Deb)Commented:
Just to clarify, there is no such thing as a printer that is "compatible" or "not compatible" with terminal services.  Any printer that is compatible with Windows 2003 - that is, where the manufacturer has published Windows 2003 compliant drivers - will work with terminal services.  The correct driver for the OS is the key. And lacrewga is correct - you can usually check the manufacturers support website and find out there if the correct drivers are available.  

You might even want to create a list of pre-approved printer makes and models that people can choose from. Problem with that is, of course, that mfrs. are coming out with new models every day, so it would be hard to keep it up to date.
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tekniteAuthor Commented:
thanks for your comments. we've even tried using an xp driver but it didn't work. i know from years gone by that for example a laserjet 5 can have a laserjet 4 driver if the 5 driver didn't work, was hoping there would be a "compatible" driver that woudl work with the newer printers that would be work.

what can also be strange, is the event viewer on the TS box, doesn't even give an error to say this printer has not driver.
Hypercat (Deb)Commented:
No, XP drivers will not work on a Windows 2003 TS - it definitely has to be a Windows 2003 driver or nothing.  What happens on the TS box is that the printer will not be mapped at all if there is no driver installed.  So when the user goes to print from the TS session, his/her printer isn't there.  There is usually an event in the event viewer, though.  IIRC it would be a Terminal Services Device error saying that the printer could not be created. Now, that wouldn't show up if the user's remote desktop session isn't set to allow printer redirection, which could be part of your problem.  If your users aren't sophisticated enough to know whether to redirect the printer, they could be turning off printer redirection entirely.
Hypercat (Deb)Commented:
I just looked the error message up on my own TS - you should be seeing errors in the System log similar to this one, unless the users have chosen not to redirect the printer:

Event Type:      Error
Event Source:      TermServDevices
Event Category:      None
Event ID:      1111
Date:            8/8/2007
Time:            11:24:31 AM
User:            N/A
Computer:      BIGMAMA
Driver [driver name] required for printer [printer model] is unknown. Contact the administrator to install the driver before you log in again.
tekniteAuthor Commented:
i do get 90% of these messages, though sometimes they dont come in, even though the printers tick box is enabled in remote desktop options.
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