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Windows cannot Connect to the Printer

Posted on 2010-09-17
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Last Modified: 2013-12-15
Hello,

I am using Windows Server 2008 to share an HP LaserJet 5200 network printer.  The workstations are using Windows 7 64 bit.  I have no problem adding the printer to the workstations when I browse to the server, right click on the printer and click Connect.

I recently upgraded the printer driver from HP Universal Postscript v5.0 to v5.1.  I can still connect to the printer on new workstations and on machines that already have the printer installed.  My problem occurs when I remove the printer from a workstation that already has it.

As soon as I do this and try to connect to the printer again, I get the usual pop up that says "Downloading the Driver", but then an error box pops up with the title "Connect to printer" and and error message that says "Windows cannot connect to the printer".

I have tried to completely remove the printer driver on the workstations by going to server properties, drivers tab, and deleting the driver.  I still cannot connect to the printer.

Any thoughts on how to resolve this?

Thanks in advance for your reply.
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Question by:craigbtg
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by:harryhelp
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If it's a network printer, it is probably best if you connect the workstations straight to the printer's IP. Then, add the driver it suggests, and replace the current driver installed (if the option is provided)
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Bawer earned 500 total points
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share the driver on the server, and when you are trying connecting the shared printer on the WS then try browsing for the driver on the server... sometimes workstations cannot download driver properly from the shared print servers.
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by:craigbtg
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Thanks, that sounds like it will work to fix the issue once it occurs.  How would I prevent this from occurring in the first place?  I am concerned because I have updated my printer driver and the new driver has filtered down to the workstations, but if someone deletes the printer he/she will not be able to add it back.  

In the past when I updated printer drivers (not on Win7 64 bit machines) I could always delete the printer and add it back to make sure the new driver was installed.  This no longer appears to be the case.
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by:harryhelp
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Are you running 2008 or 2008 R2?
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by:Bawer
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well so far this should not be the issue, also make sure that printer firmware is also updated, and you have the latest drivers on the print server. When printer drivers are updated normally the work for all clients.
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by:craigbtg
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Thanks Bawer, I will try and update the firmware to see if it helps.  I am using the latest printer driver, the HP Universal Postscript that was posted in August 2010.
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Author Closing Comment

by:craigbtg
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Never got an answer to figure out why this issue occurs in the first place, but Bawer's suggestion to browse to the printer driver to resolve it once it does occur worked.  I spent some time with HP on this issue and there seems to be a bug when you attempt to upgrade and existing printer driver.  The workstations do not release the previous version properly.
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by:craigbtg
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As a follow up to this issue, if you use Group Policy to deploy printers take a look at Point and Print Group Policy settings.  In the case above, the Point and Print settings needed to be changed so that workstations could install the new printer driver once it was installed on the print server.  By default, Point and Print does not allow drivers to be updated on Windows 7 workstations.  So a printer is deployed and since it is deployed through Group Policy everything functions correctly.  If the driver is upgraded after the deployment, either the Point and Print settings need to be changed to allow the driver to be updated on the workstations or the printer needs to be re-deployed.  This is different from previous Windows OS environments where you could simply update the driver on the print server and the driver would be pushed down to the workstations.
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Expert Comment

by:acdevadmin
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Craig, your follow up is very vague. "take a look at Point and Print GP settings" and "PnP settings needed to be changed" dont give a concrete answer. What exact settings worked for you? Thanks.
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by:craigbtg
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Check out the section on modifying security settings in this link:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753269.aspx
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