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Upgrading Active/Active Print Server Cluster - best practice

Posted on 2007-11-29
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Last Modified: 2008-11-01
I would like to know the best practice/method for upgrading an active/active print cluster from Windows 2003 Server SP1 to SP2.  What implications (if any), the best method for upgrading the individual servers, etc.?   Would there be any possible issues that could arise if one is upgraded without the other such as a scenario where one would want to update one of the nodes one week and another the next week?  The two servers are sharing resources.  I don't know why the two servers were set up as active/active sharing the same resources but I've been told that one server couldn't handle the high number of print jobs.
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Question by:bchambliss
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MidnightOne earned 500 total points
ID: 20376455
Trouble will loom. Here's the problem I saw and the solution.


(Source: MS tech support)

When you install a service pack or hotfix file that updates Unidrvui.dll on a server with many Unidrv-based PCL printer drivers, the server may spend a long time (up to 2 hours) regenerating the parsed binary printer description files (.bud files) that are used to increase spooler efficiency for these drivers. During this time, Print Spooler cannot receive incoming print jobs and may return messages to clients that indicate that the print queue is full. This is a one-time parsing operation and does not occur after the parsed binary .bud files are successfully regenerated.

Binary .bud files that are generated from generic printer description (GPD) files must be regenerated because the GPD parser file version is changed. After all the Unidrv-based PCL drivers are parsed, the spooler can again receive print jobs. Because of this, Microsoft recommends that you schedule service pack and hotfix installations on servers with many Unidrv-based PCL printer drivers to accommodate this up-to-two-hour .bud file compilation.

If you cannot wait for the server to complete the parsing of all the Unidrv-based printer drivers, manually remove all cached binary printer description files (.bud files), and then let them be automatically re-created. Depending on the speed of your server, this automatic re-creation may be completed in a shorter time. Typically, this operation is completed within 30 minutes.

Note When Print Spooler starts, it installs a newer version of Unidrv.dll. As a result, the .bud files are out of date. The .bud files are the compiled versions of .ppd files and can be completely regenerated from those .ppd files. Because of this, you can remove the .bud files. To do this, follow these steps:

Resolution

1.  Stop the Print Spooler service. To do this, run the following command from a command prompt:

net stop spooler  

2.  Search for all .bud files, and then make sure that they are stamped with the current time and date. The files appear with today's date.  

3.  Remove all .bud files that have a date and time stamp that is before today's date. These files are located in the following folder:

%SYSTEMROOT%\System32\Spool\Drivers\w32x86\3  

4.  Remove the following registry key if it exists:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\PostSPUpgrade

To do this, follow these steps: a.  Click Start, click Run, type regedit in the Open box, and then click OK.  

b.  Locate, and then click the following registry subkey:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print  

c.  On the Registry menu, click Export Registry File.  

d.  In the File name box, type printkey , and then click Save.

Note If you later have to restore the Print registry key, you can do so by double-clicking the Printkey.reg file that you saved.  

e.  Locate, and then click the following registry subkey if it exists:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\PostSPUpgrade  

f.  On the Edit menu, click Delete, and then click Yes to confirm the removal of the PostSPUpgrade registry key.

Note The PostSPUpgrade registry key may reappear after you restart the computer. This behavior occurs if other .bud files exist that have not yet been parsed. After these files have been parsed, this registry key is automatically removed.  

5.  Restart the server.  

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by:bchambliss
ID: 20381574
Thank you for the comment.  What is the technet URL for this article?
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Expert Comment

by:MidnightOne
ID: 20383542
Unfortunately, I never got the technet article number from the Microsoft tech I was working with. Sorry.
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