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Terminal Server Printer Mystery

Posted on 2011-10-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Configuration:
Dr's Office 5 users using Thin clients
1 Server - Windows 2003 R2 Active Directory Domain Controller and Terminal Server.
2 HP LJ P3005N Printers, 1 has the optional 3rd tray

Issue:
This configuration has been running with this configuration for about 6 years now without any issues....until now. The Front desk has the HPLJ printer with the 3rd Tray installed. They use all three trays. Tray 1 preprinted forms, Tray 2 different pre printed forms, Try 3 plain paper. On the server I've configured 3 "different" printers for the Front desk all using the same physical printer.
Front Desk - Tray1
Front Desk - Tray2
Front Desk - Tray3

The Other identical HPLJ P3005 is in with the Office Manager. I've configured two printers on the server for it

OfficeMgr - Tray1
OfficeMgr - Tray2

This has been huge in office efficiency. I've had to replace the fuser, rollers, etc. before and I simply take the printers and swap them, go into the Ports tab on the Printer Properties and change the ports for each printer. This way the Front Desk is never without a printer

Well the Front Desk printer finally took a dump and is not worth fixing (can buy new one cheaper). I took the office managers printer and moved up to Front Desk like I've done in the past, switched the ports and tested the printer. Everything worked.

The users called me first thing the next morning stating it doesn't matter which printer they select, everything comes out of Tray 1. Logged in and verified the Paper Source on each printer and it was set accordingly. If I print to each printer it works as expected, I'm a Domain Admin, but if a regular "User" tries, everything comes out Tray 1.

Completely baffled at what's going on when I've swapped these printers 2-3 times before with no issue.


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Question by:jbatchosngc
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Expert Comment

by:David_Ingledew
ID: 36978363
Their drivers haven't automatically updated have they - or have any other printers (especially HP\Samsung\Lexmark) been added?

Remove the printers and drivers from a workstation then re-add after a reboot and retest.
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Author Comment

by:jbatchosngc
ID: 36979191
I checked that. HP hasn't had a driver update for those printers since 2009 and that's the drivers they are using. The printer I installed was a brother. There are no workstations this is a terminal server and everyone uses Thin Clients. I have deleted the printers and re-created new ones like you suggested, with same results. I did not delete the drivers though, I can try that after I hear back from them this morning.

I removed GP this weekend just to see if that was causing an issue, although I haven't made any changes to GP for over a year. I am waiting to her back from them this morning.
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Expert Comment

by:pwindell
ID: 36979372
It is almost always caused by the Paper Type (at the workstation) being incorrectly set.

Then next most common cause is the physical dividers in the trays themselves have shifted out of place which indicates the wrong paper size to the printer.  This often happens by people slamming the paper into the tray too roughly when loading it which knocks the dividers out of place.  I have also seen this damage the Tray Sensors to where it will no longer detect the correct Size Settings via the Tray Dividers.

In the printer's config directly on the printer itself I have had better luck setting the Paper Type to "Any" for all trays.  In some cases I also had to force a reset to factory default settings first,..then set the Paper Type to "Any".

GP isn't going to have anything to do with anything.  Removing a GP, particularly some GPs which have to be removed in a certain way, will many times causes a disaster that is very difficult to fix.
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Expert Comment

by:David_Ingledew
ID: 36979788
On alternative devices I've seen random paper out messages and failures to print, purelu due the fact of the wrong paper size set.
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Author Comment

by:jbatchosngc
ID: 36979962
I knew GP wasn't the cause, but I needed to rule it out. Which I did find out did not help.

I agree with you on the Paper source however since there are no workstations, Thin client environment, I'm stumped. It works as designed as me (Domain Admin) but not a regular user on the same system. I will log into the printer and see about the paper size. I thought they were already set to "Any", but I'll double check and if they are not I'll Factory reset the printer and then set to "Any".
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Expert Comment

by:David_Ingledew
ID: 36979974
If this is a new printer/driver (the brother one) then ensure the users are print operators, this may help if it's rights related.
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Expert Comment

by:pwindell
ID: 36980277
I agree with you on the Paper source however since there are no workstations,

Of course there is a workstation.  That is what the Terminal Server is.  A Terminal Server is just a glorified workstation,...it is not technically a "server",...at least not from the user's perspective.
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Author Comment

by:jbatchosngc
ID: 37018019
Sorry for the delay in responding.
I deleted all three printers, and the print driver. Rebooted. Re-created the printers and added drivers. Users are members of the Print Operators group.  Had users test and does not work. I logged on as a user and the printers are not keeping the "Paper Soucre", every printer is set back to Automatically select. Yet if I log on as a Domain Admin and look in print management all the paper souces are set the way I want them.
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Expert Comment

by:pwindell
ID: 37018050
I don't know what to tell you. Mine works fine and the Users are not even Print Operators,...they are just normal regular users.
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Accepted Solution

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jbatchosngc earned 0 total points
ID: 37103329
Changed GPO settings to allow users to get to the Control Panel. Had them manually change the paper source on each printer and everything is working fine now.
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Author Closing Comment

by:jbatchosngc
ID: 37126826
Solved the problem myself.
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LVL 29

Expert Comment

by:pwindell
ID: 37103450
The "Paper Type" will kill you too.

I try to always leave the Type set to "Any" or "Unspecified"  and the Source set to "Auto".
You usually never have any trouble with it after that.
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