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I cannot add my local printer when connected to VPN.

Posted on 2008-10-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hello experts,
I was called today to fix printing problem. Offices have 2 computers windows XP Pro and 2 laptops Windows XP Pro.
Computer names are cp1 and cp2 and laptop names are lap3 and lap4. Also they have one computer Windows XP Pro that act as server I will name that computer as Main1
Three printers are connected directly to Main1 and they are shared. All that is set in Site1 
They have a Site2 that have all bunch computers, but I do not know what. All I know that users from Site1 connect to Site2 via VPN to use acc program and they print on their local printers. Also I know that computer Main1 needs to be running in order for them to connect to VPN. Everything was working well till they changed one printer. (I will name that printer prn4)
Now printer prn4 is installed on Main1 and shared. Printer is added to each workstation and laptop and they can print. However when logged in VPN then there is no printer prn4 and I can not add it as now looking in directory of server on site2. Also two first printers are in print properties and I can print on them.
How I can add prn4?
I tried to go in my network place and see if I can see prn4 there or Main4, but they are not there.
Please help.  

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Question by:grujiczoran
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by:AManoux
ID: 22780512
Is prn4 directly connected to server Main1?  Or is Main1 activing as a print server and prn4 is on the network with it's own IP address?
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by:grujiczoran
ID: 22781514
Hello AManoux,
prn4 is directly connected to Main1 and it is shaared. Old printer was connected same vay and others are as well connected directly. 2 printers are connected to USB and 3th on lpt1. prn4 is conected on USB.
Thank you for fast response.:)
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by:AManoux
ID: 22781553
From cp1 or cp2 can you go to the Windows Start menu and then choose RUN and then type the follow:
\\Main1
..and then hit enter. Obviously you'll want to replace "Main1" with your server's real name.  This should allow you to see all the shares on the server.  Do you see prn4?  If you don't see it, can you try the same thing from the Main1 computer and see if you can find the shared printer?
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by:grujiczoran
ID: 22782113
Hello,
I can ping and see shares on Main1 on cp1 and cp2 and print, but when I connect to VPN, then I can not see Main1 and cannot ping it's IP. In My Network Place (Vhen connected to VPN) I can open and see Domain of Main1, but not computer Main1 or printer. In printers if I tryed to add printer I can see only shares that are on site2 server and that is different domain name, obviously as prn4 is not on site 2.
(Just for conversation perpose I will name site1 workgroup "work1" and site2 domain "domain1")
So vhen connected to VPN in my network I can see work1 and domain1 and when I double click on it I can see other computers and shares, but not main1 and it's shared printers. However two pld printers that was not replace work fine from main1 and vhen connected to VPN.
I hope you will help me find problem.
Thank you again. :)
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by:AManoux
ID: 22782174
I'd probably need to know more info about your VPN configuration to help you.
Are you familiar with how the VPN is configured?  Are you just using Windows VPN tunneling on Main1? Are you using "Internet Connection Sharing" on Main1?
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by:grujiczoran
ID: 22782497
Hello,
I'm familiar with VPN. I did not set this one. It is my very first service to them. I do not know how they network is set on site2, but I do know that this office have two workstations and twoo laptops and one workstation as print server it is not real server, and VPN is working. Nothing was changed but printer. Also when that computer Main1 is down VPN does not work. In site1 was three printers and they did work. VPN works to. They changed printer and instaled it to main1 as other two are. Now VPN is still vorking and two old printers as well. I could print from pc1 and pc2 and I can print as well when I'm loged in to VPN to two old printers. New printer can print from pc1 and pc2, but not when connected to VPN.
Is that mean prn4 (new printer) need to be setup from site 2?
Thank you.
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by:AManoux
ID: 22782517
I need to know what type of VPN you are using.  Is it a WIndows VPN tunnel on Main1?  Are there VPN routers involved?  
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Rob Williams earned 500 total points
ID: 22782707
To confirm, users from site1, the location of the printers, connect to site2 by VPN. The users at site1 cannot print to local printers wile connected to a server/services on site2?

In most case they would be connecting over the VPN to a computer/server using remote desktop. If that is the case the problem is likely due to the fact that the drivers for the new printer have not been installed on the computer acting as a server on site 2. Where you are using USB printers this can be problematic so I will post a complete outline from a previous post of mine:
-the drivers for the printer have to be installed on the computer to which you are connecting, assuming they are not native to the operating system. Do not install the printer on the computer to which you are connecting but rather; on the "server" computer, open printers and faxes, on the menu bar go to file, server properties, add, and point to the diver .inf file. You will have to download the drivers first to a temporary folder. If you do this remotely, you should log off and back on before trying to print
-if still having problems, again on the computer to which you are connecting, go to printers and faxes, on the menu bar go to file, server properties, ports. Look at the port type. If it is a Dot4, you will need to use the following Microsoft fix: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;q302361
-if it is an option, often connecting the printer to another local computer and sharing it, then connecting to the share rather than having it attached locally, often resolves the problem. If you are using a VPN client this is not always possible, due to routing issues.
-if you are using a USB printer, though it usually works (some multi-function units do not), Microsoft does not officially support USB printing through remote desktop sessions. Vista is supposed to resolve this, though it doesn't help you now.
-avoid PCL6 drivers with terminal services
-Microsoft has released an updated version of the Remote desktop Connection (ver 6) which should be more compatible with USB printers. Certainly offers more USB options, assuming these are compatible with existing O/S's.
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=26F11F0C-0D18-4306-ABCF-D4F18C8F5DF9&displaylang=en
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by:grujiczoran
ID: 22783020
Hello,
Your confirmation is right, users from site1, the location of the printers, connect to site2 by VPN. The users at site1 cannot print to local printers wile connected to server/services on site2?
I do not know what VPN they using or what ports. Main1 Windows XP pro is just print server. I was misinformed about VPN down when Main1 is off (Users told me so and I did not confirmed right away, they talked VPN thinking printers?!?) they have Linksys WRV54G Wireless-G VPN Broadband Router, no switches or hubs at site1. Also they do not know password for router, so I can not get in to check things out and do not wish reset router as VPN does work.
On site2 they have server 2003, that is all what I know for now. They log to server on site2 using VPN to access business application and need to print on local printer on site1
I did read your post and many others, in rush obviously, as I understood that you talked about remote user trying to print in office. Sorry.
So make sure I understand right:
Same printer driver that is installed on Main1 on site1 needs to be installed on server on site 2. Once that is done printer will show in pc1 on site 1 when connected to VPN?
If I understand right, then your solution will help me solve the problem. I hope. :)
I will go tomorrow back and try to do it. I will let you know what is happening and try to find more info. It will be hard as all that somebody else setup and ihe or she is not there anymore, rest of them have no idea what is and how is implemented.
Thank you so much for help, and please let me know if Im correct and if there is anything else I should look for and worry about.
Thank you again :)
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 22783051
>>"Same printer driver that is installed on Main1 on site1 needs to be installed on server on site 2. "
Correct, or at least the server version of the same driver. If you log on to the server on site2 now you will likely see errors in the event viewer [event ID 1111, source Print] that indicate it sees but cannot connect the new printer.

The only time you do not have to do this is when the printer is one of the predefined ones in the server's printer list. Something like an old HP LaserJet 6L is automatically discovered as the drivers are native to the server O/S.

Make note of the issues mentioned earlier if it still doesn't show up, especially if a USB printer. Whenever possible buy network (TCP/IP) printers rather than USB, in a business/shared environment. It makes life simpler and eliminates the need for that XP box as a print server. Sounds like you are fine for now, but keep in mind the XP box has a 10 connection limit.
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by:grujiczoran
ID: 22783362
Hello RobWill,
Thank you for fast response. I will check for event ID 1111.
I do have sily question :)
I all ready downloaded server version of printer driver and will install it on server on site2. Is that all I need to do? How server on site2 will know that real printer is on Main1 site1. I know in wizard I will be asked to install local or network printer, I will then choose network printer and type "\\Mian1\printer name" or should I use IP of Main1 on site 1?
Thank you for your help.
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Expert Comment

by:AManoux
ID: 22783382
Hey grujiczoran,
Are you actually trying to print via RDP?  I didn't see you post that anywhere in the thread previously.
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by:Rob Williams
ID: 22785406
>>"I all ready downloaded server version of printer driver and will install it on server on site2. Is that all I need to do?"
Yes, but but don't install the printer, just the driver. On the server open printers and faxes, on the menu bar go to file, server properties, add, and point to the diver .inf file. If you do this remotely, you should log off and back on before trying to print. The printer on the second connection should be automatically discovered and added as a session printer.

Yes it would be could to have confirmation you are using a remote desktop connection. Based on your earlier comments I assume this as I can see no other reason for the particular configuration and issues.
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 22785503
ps- I said the source for the 1111 errors in the event viewer was "print". I just checked and it is actually "TermServDevices", and it is the system log.
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Author Closing Comment

by:grujiczoran
ID: 31508926
Hello RobWill,
It worked great. Sorry I replyed to you so late, but I'm one man shop and it was very busy.
Thank you :)
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 22817008
Glad to hear you were able to resolve. Thanks grujiczoran.
Cheers !
--Rob
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