Event ID 53 — Print Spooler Status

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

Print Server Status controls basic operations such as initializing the spooler, creating threads, and reading the registry.

Event Details

Product: Windows Operating System
ID: 53
Source: Microsoft-Windows-PrintSpooler
Version: 6.0
Message: The print spooler failed to create a symbolic link between HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\System\\CurrentControlSet\\Control\\Print\\Printers and HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\Software\\Microsoft\\Windows NT\\CurrentVersion\\Print\\Printers. Error %1. This only affects older applications, but is probably a sign that the system itself is in a poor condition or that the print spooler does not have the proper registry permissions.


Reinstall the printer driver, check registry permissions, and restart the print spooler

To maintain compatibility with applications that directly access printer registry locations, the print spooler attempts to create links from old locations to new locations. If these links cannot be created, this error occurs. Note that although this only effects older applications, it is probably a sign that the system itself is in poor condition.

Often when this error occurs, no user action is required. If printing is not working correctly, possible resolutions include:

  • If you encountered this error while installing a printer driver, reinstall the printer driver with a user account that is a member of the local Administrators group (if you did not previously install the driver with these credentials).

  • Check the reason why the spooler cannot change the registry:

    • Check for system stability problems or resource shortages by opening an elevated Command Prompt window and then typing perfmon /report. Resolve any issues that are listed, and then restart the computer if necessary.
    • Check the permissions on the registry keys listed in the event message, and confirm that the registry locations do indeed exist and that the SYSTEM and local Administrators groups have Full Control permissions to the registry keys.
  • Restart the Print Spooler service by using the following procedure.

    Warning: Restarting the Print Spooler service causes all print jobs to be restarted. After restarting the Print Spooler service, you might need to reset some printers turn them off and then turn them back on. On an active print server, perform this procedure outside of normal business hours or during scheduled maintenance time, if possible. Before performing this procedure, take all printers offline and wait for all print jobs to becompleted, or pause all printers and wait for all Active print jobs to be completed.

    1. In the Administrative Tools folder, open the Services snap-in.

    2. Locate the Print Spooler service in the list of services, and then confirm that the status is Started. If its status is not Started, select the service then click Start on the Action menu.

      Note: You can also do this from an elevated Command Prompt window by typing the following command: net stop spooler && net start spooler

    In some instances, you might receive Error 1068 – "The dependency service or group failed to start" – when attempting to start the print spooler. This can happen if the Print Spooler service relies on other services that are not running. To resolve this issue, use the following procedure:

    1. In the Services snap-in, right-click Print Spooler and then click Properties.
    2. Click the Dependencies tab. The first box lists all of the system services that must be running for the Print Spooler service to start. These are the dependencies.
    3. Make a note of each service, click OK, and then start each service that the Print Spooler service depends on, if the service is not already started. For each service that is not already started, right-click it, click Properties, and then confirm that the Startup type is Automatic.


Perform the following tasks to verify that you resolved the problem:

  • Print the document again.
  • If the print server logs spooler information events, look for Print Spooler Event 10 after printing, and then examine the document to confirm that it printed correctly.

Print Spooler Status

Printing Infrastructure