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Windows 7  - Printer Redirection using Easy print not working

Posted on 2014-11-13
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Last Modified: 2014-11-19
Hi All,
We have 2 windows 7 Pro Virtual Machines which we use for remote access. I am having issues with Printer Redirection from any machine using easy print.
If I remote into the machine using RDP, I see the the Redirected Fax and if I add the my printer driver to the Virtual machine it redirects my printers(I tested with several printers); however the Virtual machines do not want to use the "Remote Desktop Easy Print" driver. If I log onto the Virtual machine and go to cpanel-> Administrative Tools -> Print Management , I can see the Remote Desktop Easy Print Driver 6.1.7601.17514 Listed in the Drivers section. It just does not want to use it.
I have already created a GPO and enabled the " User Remote Desktop Easy print First" Option
If I look at the Event viewer(system), I see an error similar to the following(it defers depending on the printer):

>>Driver Xerox GPD PCL6 V3.2.303.16.0 required for printer !!ytsbs11!Xerox 7120 is unknown. Contact the administrator to install the driver before you log in again.<<

Again, If I add that driver, redirection works; I just do not understand why it does not want to use Easy Print Driver.
I looked at a few articles on the net which were talking about permissions to to the system32/spool/printers folder but they don't apply to me since redirection works, just not with this universal easy print driver.

Any ideas? I'm at a roadblock

Thanks,
Adrian
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Question by:Yardstick
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by:Rob G
ID: 40440584
What kind of windows are you connecting from..

I.E if you use windows Xp as your client machines, and RDP into a x64 server and have x64 Windows 7 images on it.. Easy print will fail as the drivers are not backward compatible.

The same is true if you:
Have windows server x86 hosting two terminal x86 Windows 7 Pro images.. and remote in from an x64 windows 7 desktop.. Easy print will fail in this configuration as well..

To get easy print to work (Easy print is kinda an ironic name for this)
You need a printer that was designed for the OS you are remoting into, and it needs to support the OS you came from. So if you have say an HP 4SI, you will not be able to use easy print because they do not have signed drivers from HP that work on x64 bit OS's, although the HP generic x64 driver works local.

There are a few work arounds, but they do lower your security of your system, and some AV's will circumvent these changes...
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Assisted Solution

by:Jerry Mills
Jerry Mills earned 500 total points
ID: 40440616
On printer redirects - the golden rule is that printer drivers must match.  So you need to install Easy Printer Driver for one queue (which doesn't redirect for you) and then create another printer using same driver as the one you are connecting to.  You can delete the printer afterwards as you only need the driver in the print server.

From your info this would be Driver Xerox GPD PCL6 V3.2.303.16.0.  Check properties on each end point to be sure you have matching drivers.

Change your policy to NOT use Easy Print Driver first.
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Author Comment

by:Yardstick
ID: 40442773
Hi Guys,
Here are more details about my issue:
1)The printers that I use are compatible with the Easy Print driver. I can remote from my computer to other Windows 7 desktops and Terminal servers and it redirects just fine using the Remote desktop easy print driver.
2) I am using a windows 7 x64 machine and the Virtual Desktops are Windows 7 x64 as well.
3) If I add a bogus printer to those virtual desktops and then I remote from those Virtual desktops to my machine or to a terminal server it redirects just fine without having to add additional drivers.

Jerry, the whole purpose of the easy print drivers is to have a universal print driver that redirects all print jobs to your local printer without having to install the printer specific drivers on the machine you are remoting into. Sure there are printers that are incompatible, but not mine since they work anywhere else. The reason why I don't want to use the printer specific drivers is that I may have users with other local printers remoting into these machines in the near future. If I add a handful of drivers, their printers will not redirect.

I believe that there is a problem with the redirection process; the redirector plainly does not want to use the easy print driver; This is why I asked the question.
I will try to see if I can replace that driver with the one I have on my machine. and post my results.
Meanwhile, any other suggestions that could make this work would be greatly apreciated.
Thanks,
Adrian
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Expert Comment

by:Rob G
ID: 40442809
Real Quick..
You do have Group Policy Configured correct?
Also are you using the User policy or Computer Policy?



Use Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver first

This setting is one of the ways to enable the Easy Printer functionality. By enabling Easy Print, printer driver will be used for all Client Printer Redirection that will be created. In normal situations this will make all Client Printers created using the Easy Print driver. I did not see a case that the driver could not be used. That this behavior can cause some issues is true as I will describe in the next paragraph. By default the Easy Printer driver will not be used, so you should enable this policy if you would like to use Easy Print for all Client Printers.



Specify RD Session Host server fallback printer driver behavior

This setting sounds like it’s not related to the Easy Printer driver but it is. With this policy you define the use of the Easy Print Driver in another way as Use Remote Easy Print printer driver first setting. By default the Easy Print option is disabled, which is the same as configuring this setting with the Do nothing if one is not found. In other words, if no suitable driver is found for the Client Printer the printer will not be redirected. The other three configuration options enable the Easy Print printer driver when a suitable driver cannot be found in the first place. So, only when there is no driver available (third party added or natively available on the Windows server version) the Easy Print driver will be used. With this policy you can define whether to use PCL, PS version or both when the Easy Printer driver will be used as a fallback scenario.
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by:Jerry Mills
ID: 40442847
Totally understand purpose of universal printer driver.  I also prefer using it.  Still need to match drivers.  Open printer properties and run print test on each end.   Then compare printer test page driver info to each other.

You can also install universal driver on the end with printer but you need to use Microsoft  search for printers to find it then you can set policy to use easy print first.  However if the Microsoft print down load does not have driver for printer....
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Author Comment

by:Yardstick
ID: 40442932
Hi Rob,
I use computer policy. I tried the User policy as well: Yes I did set  " Use Easy Print Driver First" . I did not set the Faillback Driver Policy, I never did before on my previous deployments and it worked; but I will try to enable that Policy for PCL and PS.

Hi Jerry,
I'm not sure what you are asking me to do. If I install the printer driver on the virtual machine redirection works fine. My problem is that if I don't have the driver installed(matched), the remote desktop easy print driver will not be used instead to redirect the printer. If I log onto any other server or machine(without installing/ matching the driver), my printer redirects; so I know my printer is compatible with the easy print driver.
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by:Jerry Mills
ID: 40443121
Understood - my troubleshooting approach probably doesn't match your approach which causes confusion plus of course I could be wrong.  I approach this type of a problem by focusing on the simplest minimal configuration.  I focus on the computer you are RDPing from to the VM server.  Reason is that a lot of times the fact it is working from other end points (servers) to the VM can be misleading.

Your comment:
"Again, If I add that driver, redirection works; I just do not understand why it does not want to use Easy Print Driver.
 I looked at a few articles on the net which were talking about permissions to to the system32/spool/printers folder but they don't apply to me since redirection works, just not with this universal easy print driver."

You may be butting heads with a policy issue.  I suppose you have seen this but just in case:
======================================================
Policy:  Use Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver first
Recommendation:  Disable policy

This policy setting allows you to specify whether the Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver is used first to install all client printers.

If you enable or do not configure this policy setting, the RD Session Host server first tries to use the Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver to install all client printers. If for any reason the Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver cannot be used, a printer driver on the RD Session Host server that matches the client printer is used. If the RD Session Host server does not have a printer driver that matches the client printer, the client printer is not available for the Remote Desktop session.

If you disable this policy setting, the RD Session Host server tries to find a suitable printer driver to install the client printer. If the RD Session Host server does not have a printer driver that matches the client printer, the server tries to use the Remote Desktop Easy Print driver to install the client printer. If for any reason the Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver cannot be used, the client printer is not available for the Remote Desktop Services session.

Note: If the "Do not allow client printer redirection" policy setting is enabled, the "Use Remote Desktop Easy Print printer driver first" policy setting is ignored
======================================================
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by:Rob G
ID: 40443145
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by:Yardstick
ID: 40443211
Hy guys,
I read the doc; I use it all the Time. GPO is set properly and if I do a "gpresult /h gp.html" in command prompt on the virtual machines, I do not see any conflicting policies that would prevent the machines from using the easy print driver. The weird part is that it only happens on these 2 virtual machines. I have a Terminal server farm on the same subnet(same environment) and everything works great there; I have the same apps installed, same antivirus etc. etc; not sure why these machines are giving me so much grief. I think I'm just going to setup a new virtual machine(same OS; but skip all the apps; just plain old windows 7); then try to remote into that one, see if I can get redirection to work. After that I will install all my applications one by one and see if this is application related. (We do use 2 products that install their own pdf printers and they even have a service dependent of the print spooler which they use for printing to pdf)
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by:Jerry Mills
ID: 40443231
Quick question.  How many drivers are showing in the VM's for the Xerox printer.  The Xerox Global Print Driver should be the correct one for Universal drivers.  If you have more than 1 driver you may want to remove the others.  I have attached example of what I am saying.  Also log on to the VM's in question and print out test page from printer properties and check matching.
xerox7210.jpg
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Accepted Solution

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Yardstick earned 0 total points
ID: 40443609
One thing that I just found out while further looking into this:
Windows 7 pro cannot do printer redirection with easy print. Needs to be Enterprise or Ultimate. I just remembered that I upgraded mine to ultimate a while go. This may be the reason why I need to install the actual drivers and Remote Desktop Easy print will not work on those machines.

http://www.thinstuff.com/faq/index.php?action=artikel&id=39

Well... not the answer I wanted but I think that Jerry is right; we need to actually match the drivers :( ... thank you Microsoft !
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Expert Comment

by:Rob G
ID: 40443613
It still amazes me how they can have a "Pro" version, "Professional" and not give it the same features as the "Enterprise" version.. Just plain old stupid..
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Expert Comment

by:Jerry Mills
ID: 40443723
What is also fascinating is that PCL ( printer control language ) is Hewlett Packard's printer language and you can actually install an HP LaserJet II Printer queue on a desktop and point to the IP address of the Xerox and it will print because it is a common language for laser printers and doesn't invoke advanced features unique to the printer.  

Did you try RDP Printer mapping via the registry?  

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee891314(v=ws.10).aspx
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Author Closing Comment

by:Yardstick
ID: 40451910
One thing that I just found out while further looking into this:
Windows 7 pro cannot do printer redirection with easy print. Needs to be Enterprise or Ultimate. I just remembered that I upgraded mine to ultimate a while go. This may be the reason why I need to install the actual drivers and Remote Desktop Easy print will not work on those machines.

http://www.thinstuff.com/faq/index.php?action=artikel&id=39

Well... not the answer I wanted but I think that Jerry is right; we need to actually match the drivers :( ... thank you Microsoft !
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