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Outlook Won't Print

rpmccly
rpmccly asked
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
When I try to print with outlook, here is what it says:

"The messaging interface has returned an unknown error. If the problem persists, restart Outlook."

Restart Outlook and the computer does nothing. If I use OWA, it prints just fine.

Runs in a Win 2003 Server Domain with exchange on an XP machine.
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Commented:
Perhaps try doing a "Detect and Repair" in Outlook?

Author

Commented:
We've tried a repair through control panel and it didn't work.
lost_enigmaVP of IT infrastructure
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Commented:
what about printing before?
check event logs for possible errors with more details.

Did you try to use different printers|users from this PC?
lost_enigmaVP of IT infrastructure
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Commented:
what about other applications? office word/ excel?

Author

Commented:
There was 2007 on the computer but the person wanted 2003. The 2007 wouldn't uninstall for some reason. We can't even get to select a printer, as soon as you hit the print icon, we get that error. Haven't tried another user.

Its only Outlook that has issues with printing.
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Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
My first suspicion is that you've gotten a recent outlook patch with known print issues:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2509470
The problem with this issue is the mapi profile is getting corupted. Under Control Panel Mail icon click and rebuild a new Outlook profile. Once you rebuild a new profile you will be able to connect to the exchange server again and build a new copy of your mail profile. you will be able to down load a fresh copy of your address book.

Once this is done you will be able to create new emails and replies because the profile Outlook will be able to authenticate with the proper msmapi32.dll in commonfiles under program files.

Also the following Topic will Help you step by step to resolve this issue
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/283175

If the above solution doesnt work please try removing any PST files attached in your Outllook and then try to print.
When you are using OWA .pst files are not mapped . so if your .pst file is large or corupted that might be causing the issue.

Author

Commented:
cqaliher, we are trying to use 2003 not 2007.

Javedtarig, does http://support.microsoft.com/kb/283175 work in 2003?

Author

Commented:
Also, was that guide for windows 2000 or earlier? We are using XP if that matters.
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Although Microsoft Says its For Outlook 2000 Standard Edition but we had this problem on 2003 as well.
One last thing you need to check is go in to Outlook > Help > About Microsoft Outlook > Disabled Item . are there any items showing there ?
If there are then enable them. Some time ActiveX control gets disabled and we get this message.
This error message is a commen error message for "out of office" ActiveX and comes up when this ActiveX is disabled.
Also these ActiveX Controls are not loaded in OWA so i am asuming this should resolve the issue for you.
Thanks

Author

Commented:
Thanks, I will let you know how it goes when I get to it.

Author

Commented:
There were no disabled items and removing pst did not work. Basically it came down to, you must fix this now, so I had no choice but to reformat the computer. The clean install of 2003 worked just fine so there was something wrong with the 2007 install for sure.

Author

Commented:
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

The solution won't help other users.
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Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
My comment 35772889 matches the author's final post explaining the solution and his conclusion as to the underlying cause, which I had listed both in my comment as well. This question should not be deleted, even if the solution is an edge case. The author still received legitimate advice that helped them reach a final solution and credit should be given.

-Cliff

Author

Commented:
The point of the solution would be to help future users and I don't know about you but if I came back with the same issue I would NOT want to do this again, I would want an actual answer to the question. You could fix ANYTHING by formatting and starting from scratch. This decision will not come from me, if the moderators want to assign points then I/they can assign points to your 35772889 post BUT I don't believe that its a real solution.
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Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
I disagree. As a regular contributor to EE, I *often* see questions like "My SBS 2003 server crashed and I don't have a backup. I can still get the exchange files off the hard drive. How can I mount then in a new install of SBS 2003? I keep getting errors..."

The answer there is *YOU CAN'T* (technical limitations of Exchange, if you are curious.)

Day to day I answer questions here where I bear the unfortunate news that a user cannot accomplish the goal in the way they want because they didn't plan for DR or their DR plan failed, and reinstalling *doesn't* fix their need, but they have no other options. Would it be nice if you could have cleanly recovered from a botched Outlook 2007 install? Of course. If there were a clean way to do so, I'd have helped. But because of how Windows is architected, because of how the registry works, because of how Windows Update slipstreams dll's into the OS so even a repair install from CD is ineffective, and because of a million other factors, sometimes the answer *is* reinstall, no matter how unpleasant that answer and no matter how much you may not "want" to do this again.

Let's be honest, this is a site where people come to most often for help with errors/crashes/etc. SOMETIMES they come for advice on new hardware, servers, or similar, but that is the exception. If we are basing answers on what people WANT, they'd WANT to not have to ask in the first place. They'd want to have computers work perfectly, as they expect, without failing, and without issue.

The reality is that they have to come here because what they want has already NOT happened. And sometimes they have a very easy answer, an answer that is very close to what they want, that gets the computer back to a state near working perfectly and past the failure. Other times they get bad news, where the issue they have is great enough that they have a rough time ahead of them.  That *doesn't* invalidate answers, simply because they are unpleasant.

In short, my comment matched *YOUR* solution. It was the solution you ended up using, the solution you needed at the time, and my explanation as to WHY it was the right solution was spot-on as evidenced by the fact that the problem did not occur with a clean install of 2003. Your own comment alludes to the fact that you suspect 2007 was the issue.

So not only was my solution of reinstalling accurate, but I didn't just say "reinstall. that fixes everything" but I gave a sound and reasonable explanation as to WHY it was necessary, and it was a reason you accepted and confirmed. That alone should justify the solution as an acceptable one.

Experts contribute time here every day answering questions. Choosing to delete a question and not acknowledging the effort experts put in to answer questions, because you didn't like the answer, even if it was accurate, is a slap in the face. I don't write this for myself. My expert points are not currency, I can't spend them, so I'm not saying this because I want you to give me an A rating and accept my answer for that reason. But I speak for other experts who would take such an action as a slap in the face, and who would see their contributions stepped on more often if the criteria for deleting a question were held at the standard you've set. EE would see far fewer contributors and would be less effective as a resource. Some do it for the points, some do it for the community, some do it for their own reasons. Regardless, acknowledging a correct answer, no matter how distasteful, is an important part of that process.

With that, i leave it to you and the moderators. I've left my suggestion and explanation.

-Cliff

Author

Commented:
If you have this problem, the reformat is NOT the solution you should follow as that is ignoring the problem. You should try to figure it out and as a worse case scenario, reformat. Points were assigned due to the expert objection to the question, not because it was a fix for the problem. If you determine what a solution is, please post a link to the thread here.

Thanks!
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