Category Archives: Printers

How to push printers to Windows XP clients via Group Policy

If you are like me, you have been using the Print Management and Group Policy options in Server 2008 to push printer installs to all your Windows 7 clients. This is great and works well.

But, what happens if you still have Windows XP clients in your domain? Well, help is at hand with a Microsoft utility called PushPrinterConnections.exe which is found in the the C:\Windows\System32 directory on your server.

Here is how to push printer connections via Group Policy to your XP clients.

First, copy the PushPrinterConnections.exe file from the System32 directory on your server to your Desktop. Then follow these instructions:

  1. Open the GPMC.
  2. In the GPMC console tree, navigate to the domain or organizational unit (OU) that stores the computer or user accounts where you want to deploy the PushPrinterConections.exe utility.
  3. Right-click the GPO that contains the printer connections that you want to deploy using Group Policy, and then click Edit.
  4. Navigate to one of the following locations:
    • If the printer connections are deployed per-computer, go to Computer ConfigurationPoliciesWindows SettingsScripts (Startup/Shutdown).
    • If the printer connections are deployed per-user, go to User ConfigurationPoliciesWindows SettingsScripts (Logon/Logoff).
  5. Right-click Startup or Logon, and then click Properties.
  6. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click Show Files. The Startup or Logon window appears.
  7. Copy the PushPrinterConnections.exe file from the %WINDIR%\System32 folder to the Startup or Logon window. This adds the utility to the GPO, where it will replicate to the other domain controllers with the Group Policy settings.
  8. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click Add. The Add Script dialog box appears.
  9. In the Script Name box, type: PushPrinterConnections.exe
  10. To enable logging on client computers running Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, or Windows 2000, in the Script Parameters box, type: –logLog files are written to %WINDIR%\temp\ppcMachine.log (for per-computer connections) and to %temp%\ppcUser.log (for per-user connections) on the computer where the policy is applied.
  11. In the Add Script dialog box, click OK.
  12. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click OK.
  13. Use GPMC to link the GPO to other OUs or domains to which you want to deploy the PushPrinterConnections.exe utility.

Deployed printers not installing on Multipoint Server 2011

After configuring a Microsoft Multipoint Server 2011, I setup a group policy to deploy some of our network printers to the server to make them available to all our connected users.

But for some reason (a bug!), the deployed printers would not appear. The only solution was to manually stop and start the spooler service by loggin onto the server.

There must be a better way! And I found it.

You need to create a new Task in the Task Scheduler utility (Administrative Tools -> Task Scheduler).

First create a simple batch file that has the net stop and and start command for the spooler service. Save this to a folder on C: drive. Next, create a task in task Scheduler. Make sure you set the task to start even if no one has logged on and set to run at the higest level. Click OK and you will be prompted for an admin account to run this task.

Once you reboot the Multipoint server, a message will appear before the logon prompt “Applying Deployed Printer Connections Policy”. And you mission is complete. Yay!

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Posted by on April 17, 2012 in MultiPoint Server, Printers


Reset Brother HL-2170W network settings

Our current Brother HL-2170W network printer has it’s good days and it’s bad days.

Most of the time, the printer works great on our wired network. But some days it decides to spit the dummy and not print via the network card. The only way to fix this problem is to reset the network settings. How do you do this I hear you ask. Well, follow these simple steps and you will be up and running in no time.

  1. Turn off the printer
  2. Hold down the “Go”  button and turn on the printer
  3. When all 3 lights are on, release the button
  4. Now press the button 7 times. The printer has now reset the network settings
To check the network settings, do the following:
  1. With the printer on, press the GO button three times. Configuration sheets will spit out. The last page is the one with the network settings
  2. On a PC that is connected to the same network as the printer, type in any browser “http://<ip address>” eg This will open the configuration page of the printer. You can now adjust the print and network settings. The default administrator username and password is admin/access.

Posted by on November 16, 2011 in Printers


How to add printers for ALL users in Windows 7

Adding printers for all users in Windows XP was easy. A registry tweek here and there and all users would get the same printers. But of course, Windows 7 changed all that. But I found a solution.

Open an elevated command prompt (right click Command Prompt and choose Run As Administrator)
Type in this command:

rundll32 printui.dll,PrintUIEntry /ga /n{printer queue name} /Y

for example:

rundll32 printui.dll,PrintUIEntry /ga /n\\\Library /Y

The ‘/Y’ is to make the printer default.
The /ga command is “global add”

If you want to delete the printer, you can use this command:

rundll32 printui.dll,PrintUIEntry /gd /n\\\Library

The /gd command is “global delete” – can only delete printers created by /ga

Stop and Start the print spooler once completed or reboot.

net stop spooler

net start spooler

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Posted by on September 21, 2011 in Printers, Windows 7