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All printer shares are missing on Windows Server 2000 & print spooler wont start

Posted on 2008-11-05
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Last Modified: 2013-12-02
Hi,
All shared printers on our windows server 2000 are missing and the print spooler service is stopped, ive tried deleting all documents in the print spool folder and stooping/starting the print spooler service but this has not worked. Also when i try adding a new printer is says "Printer operation cannot continue due to lack of resources. the print subsystem is unavailable."

Ive tried reeboting the server also, the problem seemed to happen after installling some printer software drivers for a new HP colour Laserjet printer CP 3505N.

Any suggestions on the best way to fix this?, has the registry got corrupted, should i restore system state data?

Kevin
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Question by:kevin1983
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:aherps
ID: 22884123
You can remove the printer via the registry:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Environments\Windows NT x86\[Printer Name]

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers\[Printer Name]

Reboot computer. If it is a corruption of that print driver, this should allow you to remove it from th control panel once the reference to the drivers in registry is gone
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 22884149
cant see no entries for the new printer anywhere in those registry paths
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by:kevin1983
ID: 22884379
ive tried restoring the system state data and re-installing service pack 4 but still hasnt fixed,
 anyone have any other suggestions?
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:65td
ID: 22885539
Have you tried safe mode?
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 22887833
yes still the same
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:65td
ID: 22887871
If one starts the spooler and information in the event logs, beside what was posted?
Is print migrator 3.1 being used?
Is the server being backup?
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 22887941
in the system event log i have the following errors:

Event ID: 11
The driver detected a controller error on \Device\Harddisk6\DR14.
For more information, see Help and Support Center at

Event ID: 7031
The Print Spooler service terminated unexpectedly.  It has done this 1 time(s).  The following corrective action will be taken in 0 milliseconds: No action.
For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

Im havent used print migrator before and dont think its installed on the server, yes the server is backed up regulary
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 22887951
Server has backup exec 12 installed to backup files only stored on the local server
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 22887960
Should i try re-installing windows 2000?, would this cause issues?, SP4 is installed
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:65td
ID: 22889299
I was thinking one could recover the spool and print monitor keys if nothing else for comparison.

Have you tried:
To determine why the specified service failed, do the following:

    * Display the WIN32_EXIT_CODE error that SCM encountered. To display the error, at the command prompt, type
      sc query service name
      The information displayed can help you identify possible causes for the error.
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Accepted Solution

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kevin1983 earned 0 total points
ID: 22893899
Ive resolved the issue,

After searching on the web more I found this link: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;260142 so I deleted some registry entries and was able to start the print spooler service again.  Despite already deleting some registry keys yesterday morning as suggested by aherps I didnt do all of the ones in the weblink.

In server 2003 theres a print spooler cleaner tool in the resource kit admin tools (cleanspl.exe) which would of probably resolved the issue if it was on server 2003 but the tool is not available for server 2000.

65td - ill make note of that command line to use in future
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:65td
ID: 22894887
Watch using the cleanspl.exe, it removes standard ports.
see EE article:
http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Server/Q_22738853.html
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Author Comment

by:kevin1983
ID: 23041450
ok ill make note of that in future thanks
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