Windows XP Local IP Print Queue Showing 'Printer Offline'

Hi,

I've got two Win XP SP3 PCs with local IP print queues (for two different printers) showing offline, even though they can ping the printers and access the printers' web management interface. Printing the same way from Win7 is fine, as is printing from Mac OS.

I've read that SP3 can cause this sort of issue and uninstalling SP3 usually resolves but I'd like to know three things before I proceed:

1. What's options do I have uninstalling SP3 that aren't included here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/950249

2. Is there any other solution to this problem, that doesn't require uninstalling SP3?

3. If I created a print queue on a Win 2008 Server, for the XP PCs to print via,  would this get around the problem?

Thanks guys..
G
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mr-gadgetAsked:
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vanbarsounCommented:
Have you tried different printer drivers, if available?

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jgonza9600Commented:
Sounds like a driver issue. Uninstall the driver or created another printer object with a generic print driver and test it that way.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
Yes, tried various different drivers, works for a while then goes offline again.
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vanbarsounCommented:
If you have an available server (doesn't have to 2008) that's compatible with the printer (i.e. driver available) I would try installing it on the server and then just sharing it out. i.e. your #3 solution.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
@vanbarsoun
I do and could do that but can you confirm that's a tried and tested fix for this problem?
jgonza9600Commented:
I run it those issue from time to time on my LAN. Mine still are active but the message status displayes offline. I would go with #3 to solve this issue
vanbarsounCommented:
Yes, it's actually called running it as a "print server" and it's tried and tested. That's probably how the majority of networks are set up.
 See this link for more info:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/technologies/print/default.mspx

mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
@vanbarsoun
There's no need for patronising remarks, thank you very much.
coalnineCommented:
Looks like a valid helpful comment to me. He may not know the extent of your knowledge and is simply trying to help, which entails simplification and explanation. I would strongly recommend using a print server, and agree with the comment. Print servers allow you more managebility and give you more administrative power over objects.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
@coalnine
I know exactly what print servers do. I've recently taken over a site with enough issues to keep me busy into my next life, however, I didn't ask "Is a print server a good idea?" because I'm already fully aware. I asked if setting one up would resolve this very specific problem, because, if it doesn't, it's time I can better spend on higher priorities right now.
Craig PedigoSystems ProgrammerCommented:
Have you encountered any messages in the event viewer stating you have reached the maximum number of concrrenet connections?  Even if  you don't have folders or printers  shared out sometimes if an XP client is the master browser that can interrupt network communications.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
Hi CPedigo

I haven't received any error messages like that. In fact, a contractor had done all the initial trouble-shooting and I'm starting to wonder how thorough he was as I recreated the local print queues on one of the PCs yesterday, using PCL5 drivers and it was working fine, even after several shutdown and restart cycles.

I think it will need a couple of days use to guage whether or not that's resolved the issue.

Garry
coalnineCommented:
@mr-gadget
I was only trying to be helpful by giving advice.
Good luck with the troubleshooting.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:

@vanbarsoun
I've just re-read the comment I previously thought was patronising, but in conjunction with the preceeding one and it is possible that I misread the tone of it. If I did, I apologise.

@coalnine
I know you were just trying to be helpful and I appreciated that then and now, however at the time I was rightly or wrongly miffed with vanbarsoun.

As it happens, an old PCL5 driver resolved the problem. It seems the contractor I had used for a couple of weeks previously had not been as thorough or as clever as he'd made out.

Thanks to everyone for their input.
mr-gadgetAuthor Commented:
After restarting the diagnosis process from scratch it would seem that print drivers were indeed the issue, although specifically, older PCL5 drivers.
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