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Group Policy Preferences Printers - Multiple of the same printer propogate

Posted on 2014-07-29
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Last Modified: 2014-08-11
So, before this drives me insane, I need some help on this issue. Haha! I have this sporadic issue that is occurring causing multiple of the same group policy preference printer to install on the affected workstation. Removing them does no good as they just reapply themselves. This has happened with a few different printers that are deployed this way. I have tried deleting the group policy history cache to no avail. There are no errors that show up in the event logs. I have also completely removed the policy from the server and it still installs the printers. Insane! This occurs across all users that log into the workstation. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Server 2003 Environment
One primary, one secondary DC
They are replicating correctly with no other issues whatsoever.
Windows 7 and Windows 8 workstations
printers.JPG
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Question by:Jesse Bryan
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 40228830
It sounds like just one workstation? If that assumption is correct I would remove that one from the domain, join to a work group--reboot and then rejoin to the domain.
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40228959
I had thought of that, but this is happening on different workstations.
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 40229415
on both win7 and win8 or just one version of win?
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40229879
I have only seen it on Windows 8 thus far.
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 40229920
Are the Win8 PC all OEM PCs are did you create them using a image (any change they all have local printer policies setup as well)? Do you have one central GPO or do you have multiple ones based on various settings or by OS? Do you have adm files for Server2003 and admx for win7 and 8?
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40229995
They are all OEM imaged workstations. No local printer policies setup. I have one GPO preference per printer that's applied to specific OUs. Yes, after checking it appears I have ADM for server 2003 and admx on my Windows 8 machine, which is where I manage all group policy, but the only adm files active are the default ones out of the box.
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 40230293
So do you have GPOs for printers on Server 2003 and GPO on Windows 8 for printers? Sorry if I can't seem to wrap my head around exactly what your setup is but hopefully my questions about what you have and how you are administering your GPOs will help you find the problem or help me find the problem--appreciate your patience.
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40230356
No problem at all, thank you for your time! It is a rather complicated matter and I've never run up on something quite like this before. Haha! They are blanket GPOs applied to all workstations within an UO, in this case those workstations being Win7 & Win8, but the problem only seems to show up on Windows 8 workstations. The only way I could find to clear this problem last time was to reload the workstation.... a very drastic and time costly fix, especially for a team of one.
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Expert Comment

by:lionelmm
ID: 40230648
Are you using roaming profiles--and is this happening to all users on Win8 or just a few? Look down this page to the comments made by  skd2342 (about the middle of the page)
http://community.spiceworks.com/topic/225436-in-2008-gpo-is-there-a-way-to-easily-unmap-all-network-printers-
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40234297
There used to be roaming profiles here, but I disabled them. It seems to happen on the machine level because this issue will carry over to any user that logs into the affected workstation. That won't really work as they are adding themselves well after the login sequence even after disabling the group policy and removing the printers manually.
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Accepted Solution

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joharder earned 500 total points
ID: 40251214
The printers GPP can act strange sometimes.  While installing printers this way works great, removing them can be an issue because the printer settings sometimes become lodged in the registry.  Thus, the best option for removing them are via registry.  

You can do this one of two ways: either manually or via the registry GPP.  Being that it's only one workstation, I'd just clean it up manually.

Open up regedit, and do a search for the printer name.  It is likely that your problem is in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers but it's also possible that the printer appears within HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Devices or HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\PrinterPorts or even other places.  Delete every specific entry for the printer(s).  Reboot the computer.  You should be fine after that.

If there are other workstations affected, take note of the registry settings you have cleared to fix the first workstation and create registry GPPs to delete those items.
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Author Comment

by:Jesse Bryan
ID: 40253355
I don't know why I didn't think of this before! Thank you, that did the trick! Any ideas on why this happens? I just want to make sure my configuration or something odd like that isn't the cause. Thanks again!
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