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Printers in AD

Posted on 2009-05-19
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Last Modified: 2012-05-07
I have a print server that is sharing about 25 printers.  All the printers have the List in Directory check box checked, however nothing shows up in AD.

When I try to add a new printer in AD and enter the \\server\share name, AD tells me "This printer cannot be published.  To publish printers on computers running the Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003 operating systems, use the Printers folder."
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Question by:sharkbot221984
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13 Comments
 
LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24427978
I never interpreted "List in Directory" to mean Active Directory. I just check a couple of Small Business Servers and all the Printers are "listed in directory" but I don't see any of them in Active Directory. So I think the message you got is correct. ... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:prakut
ID: 24428816
Searching for Printers in Active Directory
Active Directory client users can browse for printers published in Active Directory, submit jobs to those printers, and even install the printer drivers directly from the server.
Click Start point to Search, and then click either For Printers in Windows 2000 or in Windows XP.
In the In box, click Entire Directory.
Type the parameters on which you want to search.
Click Find Now.
Right-click a printer, and then click Connect to install it. Or, click Open to view the current printer queue.
Administrators can use Group Policy to change the default behavior of the printing environment. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
234270  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/234270/ ) Using group policies to control printers in Active Directory
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LVL 8

Author Comment

by:sharkbot221984
ID: 24433003
Thanks, however:

Any workstation I go to and click: Start -> Printers and Faxes -> Add a Printer -> A Network Printer or Printer Attached to another computer -> Find Printer in Directory -> Entire Directory, no matter what I search for I return nothing.

BUT

If I do: Start -> Printers and Faxes -> Add a Printer -> A Network Printer or Printer Attached to another computer -> Connect to this Printer: \\server\printername they show up no problem.

I want to be able to have users find printers in the directory, rather than having to tell them which server to use each time.
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24433232
They should be able to do this from the Printers folder.

Open the printers folder. File -> Add Printer. From there, depending on the OS, the available printers will list, or they can click on the Find button (not Browse) and the printers will list. I am sitting at my Vista machine right now, and the printers where I am currently just listed. On an XP machine (most of my clients) they click the Find button.

I do agree that I don't want my clients to have to use a server name, but the way I describe, my clients just see a list.

If this is showing up or working for you (I am looking an XP virtual machine and nothing is listing either), click on the button to connect to the printer, and key in just the server name (\\server) and wait for just a bit. In my environments the list will then appear.

I do admit there is a bit of variation in approach and it can depend on the particular computer setup. However, in the vast majority of cases my clients do not have to enter much if any information to see a list.
... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 8

Author Comment

by:sharkbot221984
ID: 24433462
Find button doesn't return anything.  The only thing that works is entering \\server\ then that lists the available printers.
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24433623
As I noted, there tends to be variation that I cannot control. Most of my clients know their server name (even if they leave a post-it over their desk). But the vast majority of them can connect a printer in this way or by the Find button without my assistance. They know how to help each other. So I get no calls (or very, very few) of "I need a printer connected").
... Thinkpad_User
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24445696
We have probably gone about as far as we can on this one and perhaps you should consider closing the thread out. Thanks, ... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 8

Author Comment

by:sharkbot221984
ID: 24446013
I read somewhere that it may be related to the fact that I am running Server 2003, not Server 2003 R2.  Haven't been able to research it further.
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24446116
Most of what I described works with Server 2003, although I now have all my client servers on SP2 now. ... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 8

Author Comment

by:sharkbot221984
ID: 24446334
Well I still can't publish printers in AD, however I can find them now by clicking Find Now, curiously it was not functioning yesterday and it is today and I'm fairly sure I've not touched the server, someone may have rebooted it without telling me though.
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LVL 98

Accepted Solution

by:
John Hurst earned 1500 total points
ID: 24446366
I haven't seen printers published in AD, but (at least on PC's local on the network) people can find the printers in the Printer Directory. I have always found printers this way. Why Find is now working for you and not yesterday is hard to say, and sometimes I do have to put in the server name (but never the printer name - they always list).  ... Thinkpads_User
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LVL 8

Author Comment

by:sharkbot221984
ID: 24446533
I am running S2K3 SE SP2.

"List in Directory" does mean publish in Active Directory, and by default should be done automatically,  I've checked my GP and I have "Allow printers to be published, Automatically publish printers, check publish state, computer location, printer browsing, pre-populate printer search" allowed, and I have "Pruning" disabled

Here's the technet article about publishing printers in 2003: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc781993(WS.10).aspx

It's instructions are to check the "List in Directory" box to get printers published in AD

I followed everything in there already however the printers still don't show up in the OU in AD, Find Now does work now, and searching does work now.
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 24456383
Thank you very much. I appreciated your comments and I am trying to learn from them. I was most pleased to assist you and my clients are all using the Find command, so at least we can make your users' life a bit easier. ... Thinkpads_User
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