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Default Printer resets for users after every session

Posted on 2008-10-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Windows 2003 SBS Server, DC and file server for 15 users. XP Pro workstations, Office 2003.

Roaming profiles. All computers are setup with the same TCP-IP network printers.

Users complain that everytime they login to a computer, the default printer is Microsoft Office Documentimage Writer. They set their individual Default Printer to the HP LJ 2600n, or the Sharp MX2300, or whatever else.

Next time they login, the default printer is Microsoft Office Documentimage Writer again.

The above happens even if they login to the same workstation, where they had previously set a favorite default printer.

How do I fix this behavior?
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Question by:Ronino
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15 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:pablovr
ID: 22716468
Are there any scripts running on user profiles in AD?
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22717703

group policy login script only handles mapping some server shares to the workstation, nothing else I can see there. Individual user accounts don't have login scripts. workstations don't have login or startup scripts.
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Expert Comment

by:enzogoy
ID: 22726490
how about create a vb scripts to assign the default printer to them?
WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter "\\Server\PrinterShareName"
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22769490

I am not familiar with VBscript... would I just save

     myFavPrinter.vbs

with contents
WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter "HP Color LaserJet 2600n"

and place myFavPrinter in their startup?


For some of them the users the favorite printer is a local one, for others it's the network.

Any reason why the workstation / roaming profile wouldn't remember the printer settings?

Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:enzogoy
ID: 22771892
Save the below code to FavPrinter.vbs

Where to put it?  Depends you want to set that default printer by user or by machine.
If by user, put it under logon scripts of that user or group of user.
If by machine, put it under logon scripts for that machine or machines.
Both of them are done in the AD group policy.

Please let me know if you need more help
On Error Resume Next
 
Set WshNetwork = CreateObject("WScript.Network")
 
WshNetwork.SetDefaultPrinter "\\PrinterServer\PrinterShareName"

Open in new window

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Expert Comment

by:enzogoy
ID: 22771974
By the way, yes, you can put that vbs file in the startup.  Still the same thing.
If you want anyone who log on to that machine will have printerA as a default printer then put that vbs under "All User" else put it under each user profile.

If you choose this way, I prefer to put it under All User so that you dont need to copy that vbs file to every single user profile.

enz
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22786123

Thanks, enzogoy, but that solution won't fly.

Users want to be able to change their default printer back and forth, as they see fit. There has to be some security setting in the registry / AD / domain group privilege I can grant so they can do that, isn't there ??
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Expert Comment

by:enzogoy
ID: 22791021
So at the moment, User see all of the printers but can't change the default printer?  Is that the situation?
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22796630

John logs in. His default printer is "Microsoft Office Document Image Writer".

He sets the Sharp MX2300 as his default printer. The setting works fine until the end of the session.

John logs off, and then he logs back in.The default printer is once again "Microsoft Office Document Image Writer".
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Expert Comment

by:pablovr
ID: 22799962
Don´t you have installed in those computers software like DeepFreeze?

This kind of software would cause such behavior.
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Expert Comment

by:enzogoy
ID: 22801587
you still haven't answer my question.  Are your users able to change their default printer at the moment?

You have to make sure which printer you want to be as a default printer and then put it in the script.  Like what I said, you have two options.  That's script can be run base on User or base on Machine.  If you choose base on User, wherever he/she log in, she will have the same default printer.  While if base on machine, who ever log on that machine will have the same printer.  

User can't request to have printer A to be default on Monday and Tuesday while printer B will be a default printer on Thursday and Friday.  As an administrator, I wouldn't do it and will say NO to these type of requests. :)
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22811059

No DeepFreeze or anything like it installed, I am familiar with that software.

enzogoy, the answer is Yes, they can change the default printer. The issue is, when they boot up the machine and login tomorrow morning, the default printer is no longer what they chose today.

"As an administrator, I wouldn't do it and will say NO to these type of requests."
There's reasonable user requests, and user frivolous. Unfortunately (because I'm the one who has to solve the problem), I think MYSELF that being able to set your printers and make those settings stick from one session to the next, is a reasonable expectation from a system user.

Is there any GP setting that might reset this setting. Any registry permission, that might have to be granted to users to enable this?
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Accepted Solution

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enzogoy earned 400 total points
ID: 22811298
I think MYSELF that being able to set your printers and make those settings stick from one session to the next, is a reasonable expectation from a system user.

I don't know what setting to change the permission but I use vb script to do it and my users always has the same default printer when they get on their machine.  Doesn't matter how many time they restart their machine, every single time they log on, the script will start and set that printer (the one they want) to default.

Do you have any logon script for your users?
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Author Comment

by:Ronino
ID: 22811728

enzogoy, i don't want to turn this into geek-bickering. The reason I am trying to do this without a script, if possible, is: if a week from now, user John decides he wants the Brother MFC as his default, instead of the Sharp MX2300, I want him to be able to change it himself. And a week later, change it again back to the Brother printer.

I guess if I don't have my ideal solution by the 4th, I will resort to the VBscript option.

A: yes, users have a logon script, a login.bat for share mapping

I do appreciate the follow-up!
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:pablovr
ID: 22813880
Take a look to this article:

Deploying Printers With Group Policy in Windows Server 2003 R2:
http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_tutorials/Deploying-Printers-Group-Policy-Windows-R2.html

"...
So until now, to deploy print connections using Group Policy you had to use third-party tools like AutoProf Policy Maker (note that since I wrote that article, AutoProf has since been renamed DesktopStandard and their PolicyMaker product line has been expanded). Well, with R2 the capability to deploy printer connections using Group Policy is now present, and this article walks you through an example of how to do this..."
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