SPLWOW64 run multiple instances under single user account

We are having an issue on one of our servers where two different 32 bit applications are running their own instances of splwow64.exe using the same user account.  I was under the impression that only one splwow64 process should run per user account for all 32bit printing.  The applications running are a instance of Word and a vendor specific application, the application is run via a service and the Word is invoked by another application running in the background.  The two different splwow64 is thought to cause spooler hang issues we are having.

I can not reproduce this dual splwow64 process myself by running the same programs manually so I wonder if there is some what to force splwow64 to run under a specific process so I can manually get two splwow64 processes running and attempt to reproduce the spooler hang.  Anyone know how to do this?
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Printing issues are hard to fix obviously... and this answer isn't posted to provide a solution for you. Sorry.

I don't see any problem having more splwow64.exe processes for the same user.

The spooler itself can be the source of the problem... Did you setup the Spooler service for automatic recovery?

The spooler can hang due to the printer driver problem. So you should test the behavior on a different printers and/or update printer drivers.

Do you use the latest version of the splwow64.exe and also the Spooler service (spoolsv.exe)?

What operating system are you talking about? Both W2008 and W2012?
BKRsupportAuthor Commented:
This is happening on Window 2008 R2.   The issue is happening very infrequently which makes me think its not a driver issue as a bad driver I would expect the spooler to crash very frequently.  Our vendor has suggested that the Spooler crashes if both SPLWOW64 processes attempt to send jobs to the Spooler at the same time, which may explain why it only randomly happens.  This is something I would like to test on my own test machine however I can't force two separate SPLWOW64 processes to start, anytime I print using a 32 bit program only one SPLWOW64 process runs to print all the print jobs I send.  This would also be good to understand how to start two SPLWOW64 processes to figure out how this maybe happening on our existing servers as our vendor is suggesting this is a Microsoft issue.
Two splwow64 processes could be started from two different desktop sessions. You could either login twice via RDS or execute some printing process from the background application logged in as the same user working on the frontend.

And yes, this seems to be Microsoft issue namely when it happens for different printers. In such case the speed of the solution depends on your company size...

Does the event log contain some info about the print spooler crash?

You may investigate more when you use Process Monitor software.
Has Powershell sent you back into the Stone Age?

If managing Active Directory using Windows Powershell® is making you feel like you stepped back in time, you are not alone.  For nearly 20 years, AD admins around the world have used one tool for day-to-day AD management: Hyena. Discover why.

BKRsupportAuthor Commented:
We get a System Event id 7011
"A timeout (30000 milliseconds) was reached while waiting for a transaction response from the Spooler service."

I have tried using Process monitor however when the spooler is hung it produces no processes.  Is there something I should be looking for within the SPLWOW64 processes with Process Monitor?
You may look at this discussion which offers some solutions to the similar problem.

Also this blog post contains a list of possible OS hotfixes.

It seems you are not alone but there are also many possible problem sources... (Just be glad you don't need Citrix.)

And yes, the Process Monitor does not help when there is a timeout reported. You could just identify the DLL which causes the delay and look for another version.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
This question has been classified as abandoned and is closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See the recommendation for more details.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows OS

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.