remote terminal session with windows 2003R2 server and local printer

cyborama used Ask the Experts™
Hello there,

I am helping someone try to print off a document using via a remote desktop terminal setting.  The computer is being connected to windows 2003 R2 servers.  Now it appears that the printer is getting redirected on the server level to the local computer as I get the following information in the printer dialog box from the server 2003 R2 and this printer by the way is the default printer.

Lexmark Pro900 Series (Network)(from JDNETBOOK)in session 8(terminal Server PCL Fallback)

Here is other information in this dialog box

TYPE: HP DeskJet 500
Where: Ts011

Now I have a Lexmark pro 900 series printer (specifically 905) and judging on the type I am assuming this server is connected to an HP DeskJet 500.

According to the IT Admin of this server they told a friend of mine (who also has to access this particular server) that it was not possible to print using there printer.

There printer by the way is the same as mine.

What I discovered when I tried to print from this server via remote desktop is that the server did seem to initially talk to my printer in that it woke my printer up and than just simply spit out one blank sheet of paper.

It would not matter if the document had 1, 2, 3 or more pages only one page would spit out of the printer and it was blank at that.

My thinking is that the system admin of this server needs to install the particular driver my printer uses onto that server in order for my printer to properly interact with this server but I am not sure if this is the solution since it seems that the printer at least communicates with the server in that it does wake up and feed one blank page out.

Anyway just trying to get some ideas of what I need to tell the system admin of this server in order to allow my perticluar printer to properly interact with their 2003 r2 server via remote desktop through their terminal session.



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The printer drivers need to be installed on both the client machine and the Terminal Server in order for printer redirection to work. Some 'all-in-ones' (not sure if your 905 falls in that category) are not supported under Terminal Server (you don't want to be installing scanning, faxing, copying, blah blah etc. apps on a server); some offer 'corporate drivers'; and in some situations (esp with HP) there are usable 'equivalent' drivers. Only real challenge comes if you're trying to print from Win7 64-bit to a 32-bit server. That can work but driver NAMES must match. (in the two situations I've had to deal with that scenario, required uninstalling the old drivers and re-installing new everywhere).
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Hello vquzman and ra000l,

I have done some researching in particular the link you gave me vquzman.  I looked at this work around section and just have a couple questions for you.

I noted that one of the workarounds was (I think) rename the local client printer to that of the server printer so it will think we are dealing with the same printer name etc...

Now I am running windows 7 home premium 64 bit on the client computer and porting into the server 2003 via this operating system.

As noted in the printer name found on the windows 2003R2 server it seems to have picked up exactly the same name as shows up on the client computer.  The only difference in the name is merely the stuff in parenthesis indicating where the printer is being routed to and the terminal session etc...

Now the big difference is in the model.  On the server end of things I notice the model is labeled HP DeskJet 500 where as on the client end the model is Lexmark Pro800-900 Series.

In that work around section of the write up you wanted me to take a look at is it referring to simply the printer name that needed to match or is it also speaking of the model name needing to match.

Again it "appears" to be mapped correctly via the name in the windows 2003R2 server and infact as stated starts to communicate with my printer on this terminal remote basis but only can get as far as spitting out one sheet of paper and that is the extent of its communication so this tells me there is some interaction going on here just not a complete interaction.

Now to raoool yes this is a all in one printer.  That is a very interesting observation in regards to the various pieces of an all in one printer session.  I didn't think about that scenario at all.

But again the odd thing is that the printer is at least activating via this terminal even if the correct drivers are not installed on the server. I would think that either my printer would not show up on the remote server or that it wouldn't even start to interact with it period.  I would not expect that their would be partial communication here at least to the extent of pushing out one piece of blank paper.  I would think even that could not be achieved if the mapping was not adequate.

Anyway let me know your thoughts on this and if changing the model would be a feasible work around or to roool if their might be some way to either just install the printer driver without all the excess drivers that come with an all in one printer or since I am only interested in the printer portion here is it possible to find some work around whereby scanning, faxing, etc... would not be possible via the remote server connection to the client printer but simple printing tasks would be feasible.

Thanks again for all yoru help,



Just as a follow up to this 2003 server issue with terminal services and printer routing.  For kicks I went to one of my computers that was connecte4d to another one of my printers which wasn't an all in one printer and in this case I again got what appeared to be the correct mapping in regards to printer name.

Again their was some communication from the 2003 server and my non all in one local printer.  In this case the printer printed off a bit of garbage almost like you would expect if you tried to open an exe file in word or something and just got symbols and gibberish since you were trying to open a binary in an asciii editor.  It was almost as if the windows server 2003 was treating this document on the 2003 server in this way.

Again it looked great in the word document but printed a few lines of garbilie gook on the paper.  Also what I observed about the way it related to this printer was that it would just keep on printing a bit of garbilie gook it seemed to infinity if I would but let it.  I had to literally go to the printer on my local computer and delete the job from the remote server and than turn off and on my Epson Stylus 1800R printer again and than the job was severed.

So it appears that this windows server 2003 printer mapping thing via the ts services is flaky and behaves differently for different local printers connecting to it weather it be all in one or not but in its aratic behavior it displays different symptoms for different local printers.

I would have to say at least the flakiness is consistent with the Lexmark 901 and the Epson stlus 1800R in the way it flakes out howbeit it consistently flakes differently for different printers but at the end of the day it flakes and doesn't perform anything that resembles ascii text on a piece of paper weather it is garbilie gook or simply one blank sheet of paper.

Anyway if you can give me an idea of what this server admin would need to do that would be great.  I like the work around approach but after reading it I am not sure if the system admin simply needs to install my particular printer driver onto this server (not sure if they will be obliged to do this or not) or since it "appears" to show up correctly in the name of the printer in the remote server if there is some other issue we are dealing with as to why the remote server is able to initiate the printer to do something but simply not do it correctly.



Beyond the 'which driver to use' question...

We've ended up updating drivers on the Terminal Server and all work stations (including the XP machines that had previously worked fine) to get everybody going (was first few Win7 boxes but figured they'll all get there eventually).

As a complete reach, perhaps the 64-bit version of the HP driver you may be name mapped to? (I'd try to verify the server is mapping names tho - not just selecting first printer cuz it has no idea what you're connected to. Many printer commands are from way back (FormFeed = Ctrl/L etc.) so activity at your printer is not shocking regardless of drivers, names, versions...


One last blurb and that is I am thinking if it is merely an issue of driver install that I could email her the driver that she needs to install on the server for my particular printer at least for the Epson that is not an all in one printer but if it is a ton more than this I need to get an idea of the most plausible steps that should be taken to resolve this issue.

I doubt this IT person will be too impressed or should I say possibly not willing to implement what needs to be implemented if their is too many things that need to be tweaked on the server end of things as I am simply just a needle in a haystack in regards to all the clients that need to access this server and quite frankly since this is a server for home care nurses it is not a server that is particularly attractive to the IT geek if you know what I mean.

In fact I am trying to help someone who is a nurse to get there information printed via my client printer instead of having to go to the office every time to do the printing since it is not that close to their home.

The reason I tell you guys this is I am assuming this IT person for the most part deals with people who really aren't tuned in to technology as such and would much rather just save the trouble and drive to the office to print out their jobs but in my case I am not willing that this person have to do this since I work in the IT industry howbeit I am not a network export as you can see but I am aware that things can be accomplished when people are told they can't be done.

roool I will say that your all in one printer scenario makes the most sense to me but I would think this person could (if they were willing to put just a bit of grunt work into it) get my other printer working properly on their server that is not all in one.

Anyway thanks again for listening,


Have seen (per above - mostly with HP stuff) instances where printer model XXX (a multi-function 'not supported on server') CAN be used on Terminal Server is you just install the driver for model YYY. Take a look at this (regarding Lexmark issues)...

and - with consideration for the 32 v 64-bit info from previous link, maybe Lexmark can point you to a driver that'll work.

Can you confirm that you have the right printer drivers in your TS box ?
you could try to uninstall them and reinstall them again, make sure you install the Windows 2000/XP/2003 version of the driver.
The easiest way to install a driver without actually installing a printer is via the “Printers and Faxes” applet. (Start | Printers and Faxes | File Menu | Server Properties | “Drivers” tab | “Add” button)
...from the link I posted above


Thanks for your feedback raoool this has been very useful.  I am going to see what I can glean from these different sites you have pointed me to so that I can try to give the server admin of this 2003 R2 proper information to intitiate correct communication with my local printer if possible.  

I have a feeling I may have more luck with my Epson Stylus 1800R (since this is not a all ine one printer and only focuses on printing) than with the Lexmark pinnacle pro 901 (since this is an all in one printer) but it doesn't hurt to find out from lexmark what solution they may have that is for sure.

Also not sure if I am doing this properly in regards to checking out what printer things are mapped to on this TS connection to the server but I did notice when I went to properties and advanced the all the details in the advanced section pointed to only one printer which was this HP printer that must be physically installed on their network.

So as you said though the names of my local printer seem to be generating certainly it all comes down to the hp printer on the server so now maybe its more or less finding the right driver but I do see that their is more involved then simply a driver issue.

Also How do I check if the server is mapping names opposed to simply selecting the first printer via a TS connection or can I, is this something only the server admin could do.

I am not as familiar with windows 2003 server as I am of windows xp, 7 etc and have not had a lot of experience in printer mapping so if I could get an idea how to look for this that would be great.



It would be easier for the admin there if you can simply send him the driver (or URL to it) - printer install is an easy task; but most admins will balk at a full app suite. I suggest you reach out to Lexmark to see if they have a 'print driver only' for the Pro905 on Terminal Server/2003 that also works on 64-bit Win7. If they do, sned it to him/her ask to install. If not, your 2nd printer will have the same questions: what model is it? is a driver for it installed on their Terminal Server? if not, can you get one that can be installed on Terminal Server (and is the driver using the same names that their 64-bit Win7 driver does...)  


Hello raoool,

No the other printer driver is not installed on their server but it is just a print driver in that the second printer does not support faxing, scanning, etc...

I will take your suggestion and talk to Lexmark than see if I can send this system admin a lexmark driver for the Terminal Server for 2003R2.  I will also ensure it is using the same name and model as the one for the 64 bit windows 7.

Hopefully the IT person on the server end will be willing to do this for me and thank you very much for all your help.



Roool was very helpful in assisting me with all the questions I had in regards to going forward with driver issues on a terminal server.

Thank You for your help

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