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Deploying Printers/Setting Default Via Group Policy

Hi folks!

I am the systems administrator at a junior college. We have several computer labs, all with workstations running Windows XP Professional SP3 (x86) on a Windows Server 2003 R2 (x64)-based Active Directory network.

I am trying to find the best way to use group policy and/or scripting to automatically deploy the proper printer drivers, connect to the proper printer, and set the proper default printer based upon the room the computer is in. Already, our computers are divided into OU's by room, so it's no problem applying a group policy to them based on their location. But I'd like suggestions on the best approach to take for this.

Thanks,
Ithizar
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Ithizar
Asked:
Ithizar
2 Solutions
 
DaveCommented:
You might neeeed to install the print managemnet console. If you have the disks for server 2003r2 its on the second disk.
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AcklesCommented:
There are two ways of setting up printers:
1) Group Policy: The issue with this is that you will not be able to setup anything as Default.


2) Group Policy Preferences: You will be able to setup Default printer as per this, however please bear in mind that since this is a Preference, user can always change this.
See below link for step by step referral.

http://www.grouppolicy.biz/tag/printer/

After you have setup the printer you will have to use Item Level Targeting (ITL) to setup the default printer as per OU of your choice. Please see below to have an idea of ITL:
http://www.grouppolicy.biz/2010/01/how-to-use-group-policy-preferences-to-dynamically-map-printers-with-roaming-profiles/

The above link shows you how to target it as per criteria, when you configure this you can decide to select is as per specific OU & that will get you what you want.

Good Luck,
A
 
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AcklesCommented:
Oh, to do this you can take this approach:

You can create a policy and call it say Printers GPO. Then link it to the top OU that contained all Room OU's. Then go in and add each printer that you have print server. After adding these printers you would go into Item Level targeting and choose New Item then from the drop down Organizational Unit then choose the proper OU to target.

This is one way of achieving it, I am sure there are other ways but this should do the job.

A
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IthizarAuthor Commented:
Most of the links provided here seem to be acting under the assumption that these are printers being managed by the server and/or available via UNC paths (e.g. \\server\printer). However, in our case, these are TCP/IP printers that the OS sees as local using a Standard TCP/IP Port. Any suggestions on how to best accomplish this given that?
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AcklesCommented:
Is this printer shared? If yes, try giving that as path
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DaveCommented:
I would still set them up on a server, and publish the, in Active Directory as above. That way you get the proper driver. When you update the printer drivers on the server they all update, and you only have one device, the server, trying to connect to each printer,
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