How to allow all desktop to print to the print server?

Posted on 2013-11-04
Last Modified: 2013-11-05
There are 10+ desktops, 1 server in the network. This server is also the w2k3 domain controller for domain - FarmA (or FarmA.local). All desktops joined to the domain. There is a desktop, loaded with XP Professional, works as print server for 2 Epson dot-matrix printers. These 2 dot-matrix printers are connected with parallel ports to the print server. These 2 printers are very important for day-in-day-out jobs.

Suddenly, the server broke down. While waiting to order a new server hardware, we have to succumb to the situation - network without domain. Now, all the users still logging onto their desktops without changing anything. That means log on to the desktop in "domain". Suddenly, we found that on their desktops, the mapped printers for the above 2 epson printers don't work. Further checking found that from any of the desktop, we can't browse to the print server, hence, we can't mapped the printers, due to permissions.

What shall we do so as we can mapped to the print server for the 2 epson printers? The best way is not to convert all desktops to join a workgroup as doing so means have to migrate user profile to the workgroup profile. Is there a simpler way to resolve this issue?

Question by:MichaelBalack
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Expert Comment

ID: 39621717
i am shooting from the hip here on this, but it kinda seems it MIGHT be a DNS issue....can the other computers ping the printer computer by name?  If NOT, then see about adding a dns record for the printer computer to one of the other desktops, then try pinging by name again.

if you can ping by name, then you should be able to browse by name and "reconnect" to the printers

Author Comment

ID: 39621817
Can ping by name and ip. However, can not browse.

Expert Comment

ID: 39621912
so browsing by \\computername fails? but you can ping by that name?
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39622300
Try connecting to the print server by IP instead of name.

Then PREVENT this kind of problem in the future:
1. Virtualize your new server (I REALLY hope you consulted with a professional before ordering the new server and didn't get Windows pre-installed on the server - if so, you've just shot yourself in the foot).
2. MAKE SURE the new server has a 3 year warranty with AT LEAST Next Business Day service (I'd say 4 hour service, but if you're a farm in a rural area, that may not be an option).
3. MAKE SURE the server ALWAYS has a warranty or AT LEAST you are virtual - if you're virtual, you can move the server/restore a backup of the server to ANY system capable of running the virtualization platform (I prefer Hyper-V).

This outage has clearly affected your business (and you'll have to rejoin the domain anyway since this was your only domain controller - you cannot just name things the same and expect them to work).  A virtual solution and backups are VITAL.

Accepted Solution

eerwalters earned 500 total points
ID: 39623153
There will be 4 basic steps to resolve the issue
    1- Setup the Epson printer(s) on the Windows XP PC
    2- Install LPD print service on the Windows XP PC hosting the Epson printer(s)
    3- Install LPR port monitor on the workstation(s) from which you want to print
    4- Setup a Windows printer on the same workstation from step 3, but use LPR printing.          (After creating the 1st printer, Repeat this step again to create the 2nd Epson printer)

Step 1 - Setup the printer(s) on the Windows XP PC that will host the printer
         Notes: a- Sharing the printer(s) is not necessary during the setup process
            b- I assume that the Epson printers are already installed and working

Step 2 - Enable LPD on the Windows XP PC that will host the printer (This will allow you to have another way to get the job into the print queue)
    a- GoTo Start, Click on Run
    b- Type appwiz.cpl in the "Open" box and hit Enter
    c- Click on Add/Remove Windows Components in the left pane
    d- Highlight Other Network File and Print Services & Click on Details
    e- Check the box next to Print Services for UNIX
    f- Click on OK
    g- Click on Next
    h- Click on Finish
    i- GoTo Start, Click on Run
    j- Type services.msc in the "Open" box and hit Enter
    k- Start the TCP/IP Print Server service

Step 3 - Enable LPR on any Windows XP PC that will want to print to the new LPD hosted printers
    a- GoTo Start and type appwiz.cpl in the search box and hit Enter
    b- Click on Add/Remove Windows Components in the left pane
    c- Click on Other Network File and Print Services
    d- Click on Details
    e- Enable Print Services for UNIX
    f- Click on OK
    g- Click on Next
    h- Click on Finish
    i- Close the Add/Remove Programs window

Step 4 - Setup a printer to use LPR on a Windows XP PC (same PC from Step 3)
    a- GoTo Start | Settings | Printers and Faxes
    b- Add Printer
    c- Click Next
    d- Select Local printer (Uncheck Automatically detect and install, if checked)
    e- Click Next
    f- Select Create a new Port
    g- Select LPR Port from the drop down menu
    h- Click Next
    i- In the top field (Name or address of server providing LPD), enter the DNS name OR the TCP/IP address of the Windows XP PC hosting the Epson printers
    j- In the bottom field (Name of printer or print queue on that server), enter the name of the desired Windows printer on the Windows XP PC hosting the printer
    k- Click OK
    l- Continue onward with a normal Windows printer setup by picking the desired print driver and naming the printer until finished  
    m- Open the newly created printer's properties
    n- GoTo the Ports tab
    o- Uncheck Enable Bidirectional support if it's enabled
    p- Click Apply
    q- GoTo the General tab and send a test print
    r- Click OK to close

    1- This methodology will allow the desired Windows workstation(s) to print to the printer(s) on the Windows XP PC without having to modify the permissions or use a workgroup.
    2- LPR uses 11 ports by default so if a sending workstation needs to send more than 11 print jobs within a minute or two, let me know and I can explain how to increase the # of available ports. Without the change there would be a delay on the 12th print job of a couple minutes, but it would still print.  I only mention this because if you need to print lots of small jobs in a short period of time, it will be necessary.  I have found that this is not necessary for 97% of all of the workstations that I have encountered.
 * Let me know if you have Windows 7 machines that you want to setup to print to the Epsons and I can give specific details for those too.

Author Comment

ID: 39626252
Hi Eerwalters,

Thanks for the detailed procedure of getting LPD and LPR to work. No need provide details on Windows 7 as I managed to get both workstation types work.

It works.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 39626254
Excellence. It came at the right time.

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