Enabling Printing and Faxing

Microsoft Windows XP Professional offers several new ways to install, configure, and manage printers. Many improvements that enhance performance, compatibility, and use of wizards in the Windows XP Professional printing system are transparent to users. The installation process is intuitive and efficient. After installation, you can send print jobs over the Internet by using new port monitors.

For information on how to obtain the Windows XP Professional Resource Kit in its entirety, please see http://www.microsoft.com/mspress/books/6795.asp.


On This Page

Related Information
New to Enabling Printing and Faxing
Using Active Directory to Find Printers
Installing Printers
Setting Printing Preferences
Creating and Sending Print Jobs
Monitoring and Managing Internet Print Jobs
Printing Concepts
Troubleshooting Printing Problems
Faxing in Windows XP Professional
Additional Resources

  • For information about Plug and Play technology, see Chapter 9, “Managing Devices.”

New to Enabling Printing and Faxing

The Printers and Faxes folder (formerly the Printers folder) changes appearance when you select Show Common Tasks in folders.

To change the Printers and Faxes folder view

  1. In Control Panel, double-click Folder Options.

  2. On the General tab, click Show Common Tasks in folders.

An unobtrusive balloon in the notification area, instead of a dialog box on the main screen, tells you the status of a print job. The balloon remains active for ten seconds or until the user clicks the icon.

The preferred port monitor in Windows XP Professional is the Standard TCP/IP Port Monitor, known as the standard port monitor, which uses TCP/IP as the transport protocol. When the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) component is installed, Windows XP Professional uses it to configure and monitor the logical printer ports. Internet printing also adds a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) port monitor.

Warning Windows XP Professional no longer supports the Data Link Control (DLC) printing protocol. DLC is the default protocol for using HPMON from Hewlett Packard. Some earlier Hewlett Packard Jet Direct printers use HPMON. You can upgrade to the current Hewlett Packard Jet Direct network interface card that supports IP and use the standard port monitor.

Using Active Directory to Find Printers

A networked printer serves many users and offers better resource management and greater flexibility than stand-alone printers. However, a networked printer can be more difficult for your computer to locate because it is not directly connected to the user’s computer.

The Add Printer Wizard supports searching and installing printers using the Active Directory directory service.

Locating the closest printer had formerly been difficult for both administrators and users. However, by using Active Directory, users can search a range of printer attributes to find a printer. If you use subnets to define the sites within your organization, the Active Directory directory service can find printers near you.

For example, if you are in Los Angeles and want to find all the Los Angeles printers in your deployment, in the Location dialog box, type US/LAX. If US/LAX matches the printer location syntax in Active Directory, your search might return the following results:

  • US/LAX/1/101

  • US/LAX/2/103

These results indicate that two printers are available in Los Angeles. The printers are located in buildings 1 and 2 and in rooms 101 and 103, respectively.

Note A printer in Active Directory must be serviced by a print server. If you print directly to a network printer, you cannot use Active Directory. When printing over a Microsoft Windows 2000–based or Windows Server 2003–based network, you can choose between printers on your local area network (LAN) and printers available on the Internet.

To search for nearby printers

  1. In Search, click Printers, computers, or people, and then click A Printer on the network.

  2. In the Location box, type the complete printer location string or a partial string followed by an asterisk (*).

  3. Click Find Now.

    Note The printer location string must match the syntax specified by the administrator that describes the location in Active Directory.

Searching Active Directory Fields

When you search for printers in large environments, you might need to use a specific format to find a printer in the location you want. You can create specific formats by using a standardized format for the Location attribute of each printer. The Location field allows approximately 250 characters and permits you to describe printer locations in various ways. For example, the following formats describe a printer located in New York City in building 3 on floor 5:

  • New York/Building 3/Floor 5

  • NYC/Bldg III/Fifth floor

  • NY/B3/F5

When you understand how a printer location is formatted in Active Directory, you can create more effective searches.

To search for a printer that has specific characteristics
  1. In Search, click Printers, computers, or people, and then click A Printer on the network.

  2. Click the Features tab.

    Use Features to create searches for printers by using a predefined set of commonly sought features.

    – or –

    Click the Advanced tab. (Use the Advanced tab to search Active Directory by using Boolean operators. You can construct complex searches based on any available criteria.)

  3. Enter your search criteria, and then click Find Now.

Active Directory returns a list of all printers that match your query. If a printer query has characteristics different from the ones listed in Active Directory, you might receive misleading search results and be unable to find the appropriate printer.

Searching Active Directory Locations

You can make your search of Active Directory locations more effective by using the following methods:

  • Location tracking, which can be enabled

  • A standardized location-naming convention that is assigned to each site, subnet, or computer object

  • Sites based on one or more subnets

If these methods are available, you can find printers in your location quickly.

Note The ability to search for printers in Active Directory can be restricted using Group Policy. For more information, see article 234270, “Using Group Policies to Control Printers in Active Directory,” in the Microsoft Knowledge Base at http://support.microsoft.com.

To search for printers by using Active Directory location tracking
  1. In Search, click Printers, computers, or people, and then click A Printer on the network.

    Your current location appears in the Location box if your deployment uses location tracking.

  2. If your current location does not appear, click Browse to find printers in other locations.

  3. Enter any other search criteria, and then click Find Now.

For more information about searching, see “Searching Active Directory Fields” earlier in this chapter.

For your users to search for nearby printers by using subnets, your deployment must have the following:

  • A directory service with more than one subnet

  • A network IP addressing scheme that roughly matches the physical layout of your enterprise

  • One or more subnet objects for each site

    You can create subnet objects and then manage sites by using Active Directory Sites and Services, which is included with Microsoft Windows 2000 Server or Microsoft Windows Server™ 2003.

Your deployment can use an extended schema, although in most cases you should use location tracking instead of extending the schema. All objects in Active Directory have a base set of attributes. You can extend this base set to accommodate the particular needs of your environment. When you use an extended schema, you must construct Boolean searches on the Advanced tab in the Search dialog box. When a limited set of available Boolean operators and choices exists, the Advanced tab provides the set.

Although using location tracking is typically an effective solution, if it fails, administrators might extend the schema to include attributes such as printer city, printer building, or printer floor. Entering complete and accurate descriptions of printer locations in Active Directory can save time later.

For more information about Active Directory and extending the schema, see “Active Directory Schema” in the Distributed Systems Guide of the Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Resource Kit.

For more information about setting up location tracking using Group Policy, see article 234270, “Using Group Policies to Control Printers in Active Directory,” in the Microsoft Knowledge Base at http://support.microsoft.com.

Note You can connect to another network printer by entering its printer name, using the Universal Naming Convention (UNC) or Uniform Resource Locator (URL). Using URLs to access printers requires an Internet connection. You must know the UNC or URL of the printer to which you want to connect.

Installing Printers

Windows XP Professional installs and configures printers in a several ways.

Using Plug and Play support, you can install printers that are attached directly to your computer. After you attach a Plug and Play printer to the computer, Windows XP Professional installs the necessary device drivers. When you install printers over a network, Active Directory helps you locate printers based on criteria such as the printer location or color and resolution capabilities.

Using Point and Print to install a network printer connection, you can download all required printer drivers. After a print server is configured to support printers and provide drivers to clients, users do not need to know which driver is required for the printer or how to install the required drivers. Windows XP Professional installs the required drivers for them.

If your printer and printer monitor support bidirectional communication, the print device can actively report errors. If the printer is jammed or out of paper, Windows XP Professional lets you know.

Installing Network and Internet Printers

In Windows XP Professional, you can install network printers by using the following features:

  • Point and Print

  • Add Printer Wizard

  • Run dialog box

  • Internet Printers

Users can choose the method they find most convenient.

Note Windows XP Professional has removed the NetBEUI networking protocol from the operating system. It is recommended that you use TCP/IP, IPX/SPX, or the software provided by the printer manufacturer in place of the NetBEUI protocol on your network.

Point and Print

When you use Point and Print to install a printer over a network, the server sends Windows XP Professional information about your printer, such as:

  • Printer driver files

  • The name of the server on which printer driver files are stored

  • Printer model information that specifies which printer driver to retrieve, either from the Windows directory on a local computer or over the network

To install a printer by using Point and Print
  1. Open My Network Places, click Entire Network, click Microsoft Windows Network, select a workgroup or domain, and open the desired network print server.

  2. Open the Printers and Faxes folder on that server.

  3. Right-click a printer icon, and then click Connect.

    Note Point and Print functionality can be restricted using Group Policy. For more information, see article 319939, “Description of the Point and Print Restrictions policy setting in Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP,” in the Microsoft Knowledge Base at http://support.microsoft.com.

Add Printer Wizard

The Add Printer Wizard walks you through the steps of installing a non–Plug and Play printer.

Run Dialog Box

If you know the Universal Naming Convention (UNC) name or the URL of the printer you want to install, you can use the following procedure to complete a fast, direct installation.

To install a printer by using the Run dialog box
  • In the Run dialog box, type the UNC or URL.
Internet Printers

In Internet Explorer, you can find all the printers that are available on a Microsoft Internet print server. To view these printers, enter the URL of the print server in the address bar of Internet Explorer.

For more information about a printer on a Microsoft Internet print server, click the printer name. A Web page displays information such as:

  • Printer model

  • Location

  • Comment

  • Network name

  • Documents in the queue

  • Maximum speed

  • Availability of color support

  • Availability of duplexing

  • Maximum resolution

To install an Internet printer by using the URL
  1. In Internet Explorer, in the Address text box, type the URL of the print server (for example, http://servername/printers), and then click Go.

  2. Click a printer icon, and then click Connect.

    Note Note that Internet Information Services (IIS), a Windows component that is required for installing printers using the URL method just mentioned, is not installed by default on Windows Server 2003 the way it is on Windows 2000 Server. You must install IIS together with its Internet Printing component for the URL method of installing printers to work.

Installing Local Printers

There are several ways to install local printers. Use the one that is most convenient for you.

Note To install local printer drivers, you must be either a member of the Administrator group or a user who belongs to a group that has the user right Load and unload device drivers.

To grant privileges to load and unload device drivers
  1. In Programs, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Local Security Policy.

  2. In the console tree, double-click Local Policies, and then double-click User Rights Assignment.

  3. In the details pane, right-click the Load and unload device drivers policy, and then click Properties.

  4. Click Add User or Group, type the appropriate user name, and if you are done adding users, click OK.

    To avoid having to grant permissions on a per-user basis, you can click Load and unload device drivers to grant permissions to add local printers to the Power Users group. Continuing from step 3 above:

  5. Click Add User or Group, click Object Types, select the Groups check box, and then click OK.

  6. Click Locations, select the local computer at the top of the network tree, and then click OK.

  7. In the name box, type Power Users, and then click OK.

  8. Click OK.

Plug and Play Printers

Plug and Play is a set of specifications that a computer uses to detect and configure a print device and install the appropriate drivers. This installation technique is available only for printers that are connected directly to your computer. Plug and Play is not available for networked printers.

To start Plug and Play printer installation, plug your printer into your computer. In most cases, Windows XP Professional automatically configures the printer and activates it. During this process, Plug and Play installs the appropriate drivers; and you do not need to restart your computer. If the installation fails, you can use manual detection for Plug and Play printers by using the Add Printer Wizard or Device Manager.

To install a local printer by using the Add Printer Wizard
  1. In Control Panel, double-click Printers and Faxes.

  2. Double-click Add Printer, and then follow the instructions.

Although Windows XP Professional includes drivers for many popular printers, you need to provide the driver if your printer uses a driver that is not included with Windows XP Professional. If Plug and Play detects that your computer does not have a driver for your printer, you are prompted to provide it.

You can have the Add Printer Wizard search for drivers on the CD, local drive, network path, or Windows Update.

Automatic Detection and Installation

Windows XP Professional detects supported printers and completes the entire printer installation process by installing the proper drivers, updating the system, and allocating resources. You do not need to restart the computer, and the printer is immediately available for use.

All printers that Plug and Play automatically detects use Universal Serial Bus (USB) connections, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 1394 parallel connections, or Infrared Data Association (IrDA) transmission.

Manual Detection and Installation

Manual Plug and Play detection is similar to automatic Plug and Play detection in that Windows XP Professional completes printer installation. However, you must restart your computer to prompt the automatic installation or use the Add Hardware Wizard to prompt your computer to detect the printer. When you restart the computer or use the Add Hardware Wizard, Windows XP Professional updates your computer, allocates resources, and installs drivers. If drivers for the printer are not available, you are prompted to provide them.

Typically, manually detectable Plug and Play printers use parallel cables. In Windows XP Professional, for a printer using a parallel connection, you can click the Automatically Detect box in the Add Printer Wizard to verify that the printer is installed. For more information about Plug and Play, see Chapter 9, “Managing Devices.”

Note Most Plug and Play printers use USB or parallel connections.

Printer Installation Considerations

Typically, Plug and Play automatically detects printers that use USB ports. Plug and Play also detects printers that use parallel ports, but if the print device does not have an in-box driver, you must install these print devices by using the Add Printer Wizard. Windows XP Professional requires that you have Power User or greater permissions and have the Load and unload device drivers permissions assigned to you to install printers.

Some printers require drivers that are not included with Windows XP Professional. Using the Add Printer Wizard, you can install a printer driver from a floppy disk, a network share, a CDROM, Windows Update, or the printer manufacturer’s Web site.

Tip Windows Update makes it possible for you to download updated device drivers as they become available.

If Microsoft does not supply a driver for your printer, request a printer driver from the printer’s manufacturer. To ensure quality, use drivers that are Windows Hardware Quality Labs (WHQL) certified. Microsoft Product Support Services does not support systems that use drivers that are not on the WHQL list.

You can send e-mail to mswish@microsoft.com to request Microsoft support for a driver or feature. Please include the following information in your request:

  • Name

  • Business name

  • Phone number or e-mail address

  • Printer manufacturer

  • Printer model

  • Driver or feature name

    Note Microsoft reserves the right to decide whether or not to honor your request for support of additional drivers or features.

Driver.cab File

When you install a Plug and Play device, Windows XP Professional installs a driver from the Driver.cab file.

Windows XP Professional installs the cabinet file as part of the operating system installation process. The Driver.cab file contains thousands of commonly used files, including drivers, application extensions, and color profiles. These files enable Windows XP Professional to work with a broad range of hardware devices and applications.

Windows Update

If the device drivers you need are not available in the version of Windows XP Professional you have installed, they might be available from Windows Update, which updates your system by adding new Windows XP Professional features, including device drivers and system updates.

You can gain access to Windows Update by selecting Windows Update from the Start menu.

Printing from Other Operating Systems

A network printer installed on a computer running Windows XP Professional might use a print server that is not running Windows 2000. In that case, you must install additional components so that the client computer, server computers, and printer can communicate and transfer print jobs.

NetWare Print Servers

To use a printer connected to a NetWare server, you must install a client such as Microsoft Client Service for NetWare or Novell Client 32 on your computer. These clients let your computer send print jobs to the NetWare server, which the server relays to the printer.

UNIX Print Servers

Before you can print to a remote UNIX printer configured using Line Printer Daemon (LPD), you must configure Windows XP Professional to print by using Line Printer Remote (LPR). You must first install Print Services for UNIX, and then install and configure a printer using LPR as the printer port.

Note Many TCP/IP printers and print servers support both LPR/LPD and direct TCP/IP printing. For these printers, you do not need to add Print Services for UNIX. You can directly configure the printer by adding a Standard TCP/IP Port, as described in the “To configure a standard TCP/IP port by using the standard port monitor” procedure in the “Standard Port Monitor” section of this chapter.

To install Print Services for UNIX
  1. In Control Panel, double-click Network Connections.

  2. On the Advanced menu, click Optional Networking Components.

  3. Select Other Network File and Print Services, and then click Details.

  4. Select Print Services for UNIX, and then click OK.

To add an LPR port
  1. In Control Panel, double-click Printers and Faxes.

  2. Double-click Add Printer, and then click Next.

  3. Click Local printer, clear the Automatically detect my printer check box, and then click Next.

  4. Click Create a new port, and then click LPR Port.

  5. Click Next, and then enter the following information:

    • In Name or address of server providing LPD, type the Domain Name System (DNS) name or IP address of the host for the printer you are adding.

    • In the Name of printer or print queue on that server text box, type the name of the printer as it is identified by the host, which is either the direct-connect printer itself or the UNIX computer.

Follow the instructions to finish installing the printer.

Note The standard port monitor supports the RAW protocol, TCP/IP printing, and the LPR protocol.

IBM Host Printers

IBM host printers are a component of Systems Network Architecture (SNA), a computer networking architecture developed by IBM. SNA provides a network structure for IBM mainframe, midrange, and personal computer systems. SNA defines a set of proprietary communication protocols and message formats for the exchange and management of data on IBM host networks.

To send print jobs to printers that are part of an SNA environment, you can use the Add Printer Wizard to connect to the LPT port or print queue that corresponds to the printer you want. An administrator must configure SNA hosts and printers to accept these connections before users can connect to them. For more information about configuring printers in an SNA environment, see the documentation provided with your printer.

Setting Printing Preferences

You can configure printing options in the Printing Preferences dialog box. For some printers, advanced options are available. Refer to the documentation provided with your printer for a list of these additional features.

To access Printing Preferences

  • In the Print dialog box, click the Preferences button of the program you used to create the document.

Printing Preferences settings are maintained across different documents, so you can establish a standard output for all documents. Printing Preferences determine default print job settings, but you can override these defaults in the Print dialog box.

Using the Printing Preferences dialog box, each user can set different preferences for a printer. Because printing preferences are preserved for each user, preferences do not need to be reset each time the printer is used.

Using the Printing Preferences dialog box, you can print in reverse order, print multiple pages on a single page, or specify the number of copies to be printed. Windows XP Professional supports printing up to 9999 copies of a document in one print job.

For more information about Printing Preferences, see Windows XP Professional Help and Support Center.

Note Not all applications support the new common dialog box.

The level of access to a print job queue depends on a user’s security permissions as shown in Table 11-1.

Users working with print queues include two groups:

  • Administrative users have Manage Printers and Manage Documents permissions. They have wide control over how the printer operates regardless of where the print job originates.

  • General users have Print permissions to view general printer information and to manage the documents that they send to the printer. They cannot control other users’ print jobs.

    Table 11-1 Default Permissions for Printer Users


    Administrative User

    General User

    See all jobs.



    Pause or resume printer operation.



    Pause, cancel, reschedule, or redirect any job.



    Pause, cancel, reschedule, or redirect own job.



    Restart a job from the beginning.



    View and change job settings such as priority or user notified on completion.



    View form, paper source, page orientation, and number of copies.



Scheduling Printing

Users with administrative permissions can establish print scheduling on the Advanced tab of the Printer Properties dialog box as shown in Figure 11-1.

Figure 11-1 Advanced tab in the Printers Properties dialog box

Figure 11-1 Advanced tab in the Printers Properties dialog box

Users with administrative permissions can schedule printer availability, printer priority, and print job priority. Printer priority affects how print jobs reach print queues. Print job priority affects jobs already in a print queue. It does not affect how jobs arrive in a print queue.

Note Windows XP Professional gives you quick access to basic information about printers. Let the mouse pointer pause on a printer to display the printer name, status, and location, and the number of documents in its queue.

Printer Availability

Printer availability determines whether a printer is available always or only during selected hours.

Printer Priority

Printer priority determines the order in which a printer is chosen relative to other available printers. Printer priority must be set for logical printers that correspond to the same physical printer. Setting printer priorities for virtual printers that correspond to different physical printers has no effect.

Note A physical printer is the printer hardware that prints a document; a logical printer is a software representation of that physical print device.

Important points to remember about printer priority:

  • Higher numbers correspond to higher priorities, so priority 1 printers have lowest priority.

  • Printer priority determines the order in which the printer completes multiple print jobs. A printer does not stop processing a job already in process, even when the spooler receives a higher priority job that is directed to a higher priority printer on the same port.

To set printer priority
  1. Open Printers and Faxes, right-click a printer icon, and then click Properties.

  2. In the Properties dialog box, on the Advanced tab, enter a number in the Priority box.

    Note To set printer priority, you must have Manage Printer permissions for the printer.

To set printer priorities for multiple virtual printers
  1. Add a virtual printer to a specific port.

  2. Add more virtual printers, by using different names for the physical printer you are emulating, until you have the number of virtual printers you need.

  3. Right-click a printer icon, click Properties, and in the Priority box, type or select a value.

  4. Repeat step 3 for other virtual printers that correspond to the same physical printer.

  5. Using Computer Management, establish distinct groups to which you intend to add users, and then assign each group to a printer.

  6. On each virtual printer’s Security tab, add groups, and then set permissions and restrict access as needed.

For more information about setting printer priorities, see Windows XP Professional Help and Support Center.

Caution If a user is a member of two groups and one group is denied access to the printer, the Deny setting overrides the Allow setting. It is recommended that you remove the Everyone group from the printer instead of denying access to the Everyone group.

Users can install printers based on their group membership, which ensures that the users have the correct level of priority access to printers.

A user with administrative permissions can set the print job priority for a document. However, users who submit print jobs have administrative permissions for those jobs and can change the jobs priority in a print queue.

In a print queue, multiple jobs sent to the same virtual printer are affected by job priority. The printer prints the job with highest print job priority first, and then prints jobs in the order of submission. You can set job priority in a printer’s property sheet by using the Priority field on the Advanced tab.

Consider the set of jobs in the print queue shown in Table 11-2.

Table 11-2 Sample Jobs in a Print Queue



















Assuming that no other jobs are submitted and no administrator changes a job priority, the printer prints these jobs in the order shown in Table 11-3.

Table 11-3 Printing Priority for Jobs in Table 11-2



Job 1


Job 5

Highest priority

Job 2

First in queue of priority-10 jobs

Job 4

Highest priority of jobs remaining

Job 3

Only job remaining; lowest priority

To set job priority on an existing print job
  1. Open the print queue.

  2. Double-click to select a print job.

  3. On the General tab, move the Priority slider to set the print job priority.

Spooler Settings

Users with administrative permissions can configure print spooling by using the Advanced tab on the Printer Properties page. A print job can be sent to the spooler or directly to the printer. Jobs sent to the spooler can be configured to start printing as soon as possible or after the final page in the job is sent to the spooler.

When you send a print job to a spooler, your computer does not have to render the print job, so the resources of your computer remain available. However, if the print server with the spooler is unavailable, sending the print job to the spooler fails. You might have to wait for other jobs to finish spooling before your job is processed.

If the spooler is configured to print each page as it is rendered, printing delays might occur between pages. If each spooler has many users, it is faster to have the entire job spooled before printing. If each spooler has few users, it is faster to print each page as it spools.

Note Spooling occurs on the print server for print jobs sent over the network and on the local computer when the printer is directly connected.

Creating and Sending Print Jobs

Windows XP Professional supports the following ways to create and send a print job to the printer:

  • Drag a file to a printer icon in the Printer folder. The file then prints on that printer.

  • Create a shortcut to a printer, and then add it to the Send To menu. Right-click a file, point to Send To, and click the name of the printer you want to use.

  • Open a file in the program you used to create the file. Click File, and then click Print.

  • Right-click a file, and then click Print. The default printer prints the file and then closes the application.

Modifications to the Print Dialog Box

The Windows XP Professional Print dialog box includes several modifications to previous versions of Windows.

The Print dialog box includes improvements that allow you to:

  • Use the Find Printer button to browse for printers that are not installed on your computer but are available on the network. After you find a printer, you can use Point and Print to establish a connection with the printer and install the required drivers.

  • Use the Preferences button to change the Layout or Paper/Quality settings.

    Note These changes to the Print dialog box are not supported by all applications.

Printer Drivers

A printer driver is a software program that converts application-drawing commands to printer-ready data. Printer drivers translate the information a user sends from the computer into commands that the printer understands.

The Microsoft Universal and PostScript drivers are enhanced printer drivers, which improve printing in the following ways.

Universal Driver

The Universal driver has been optimized for improved quality and faster printing, and Image Color Management (ICM) 2.0 ensures accurate color. The Generic Print Description (GPD) supports minidrivers, which extract the details of each printer’s features and allow some unsupported printers to work with Windows XP Professional.

For more information about ICM, see “Image Color Management 2.0” later in this chapter.

The Universal driver enhances font performance and capabilities. Printer font substitution results in better output. Two-byte fonts are supported, allowing the printing of extended punctuation marks, ideographs, and character sets, such as Basic Latin, Greek, Cyrillic, Indic, Thai, Kana, and Hangul characters.

The Universal driver supports customization, allowing greater flexibility for print devices that can be used with Windows XP Professional.

PostScript 5.0 Driver

The PostScript 5.0 driver provides improved performance through enhanced virtual memory management. Color printing with the PostScript driver uses ICM 2.0, which ensures that color images are faithfully reproduced.

Microsoft has extended the PostScript driver to support more font formats and provide the structure for further customization.

PostScript continues to support the following:

  • PostScript levels 1, 2, and 3

  • ICM 2.0

  • Control over output data format, allowing for CTRL+D handling, Binary Communications Protocol (BCP), Tagged Binary Communications Protocol (TBCP), and pure binary (8bit) channels such as AppleTalk

  • PPD version 4.2 and .wpd files

  • Simplified Printer Description (.spd) files

  • Tracking of virtual memory available to the printer

Image Color Management 2.0

Image Color Management (ICM) 2.0 ensures that printed colors are accurately reproduced. To use ICM 2.0, your printer must support it. In some cases, you can use a third-party calibration tool to create or update a color profile for your printer. This compensates for color variations between different printers of the same type or the variations that occur as a printer ages.

Methods of Sending Print Jobs

By using new port monitors and newly supported connection methods, Windows XP Professional sends print jobs faster than previous versions of Windows.

For sending print jobs you can use:

  • Standard port monitor

    The preferred port monitor for printers on a TCP/IP network.

  • Internet printing

    A method of sending print jobs to a printer using the URL of the printer.

  • USB

    For installing a printer quickly and easily.

  • IrDA

    For submitting print jobs by using infrared transmissions.

  • IEEE 1284.4 protocol

    For setting up your multifunction peripheral (MFP) device in a one-step process.

Standard Port Monitor

The standard port monitor connects clients to network printers that use the TCP/IP protocol. It replaces the LPR port monitor (Lprmon) as the preferred port monitor for TCP/IP printers that are connected directly to the network through a network adapter. The new standard port simplifies the installation of most TCP/IP printers by detecting the network settings. Printers connected to a UNIX or Virtual Address eXtension (VAX) host might still require Lprmon.

The standard port monitor is the preferred port monitor in Windows XP Professional. The standard port monitor can use Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) to configure and monitor the printer status. In addition to the standard port monitor, Internet printing adds an HTTP print provider.

The standard port monitor communicates with network-ready printers, network adapters such as Hewlett-Packard’s JetDirect and external network print servers such as Intel’s NetPort. The standard port monitor can support many printers on a single server and is faster and easier to configure than Lprmon.

The standard port monitor sends documents to a printer by using either the RAW or LPR printing protocol. Together, these protocols support most current TCP/IP printers. Do not confuse these print protocols with transport protocols such as TCP/IP or Data Link Control (DLC).

The RAW protocol is the default print protocol for most print devices. To send a job formatted with RAW, the print server opens a TCP stream to the printer’s port 9100 or another port number and selects the connections to multiport external devices. For example, on certain print devices port 9101 goes to the first parallel port, 9102 goes to the second parallel port, and so on.

The standard port monitor uses the LPR protocol when you specify LPR protocol during port installation or reconfiguration, or when the RAW protocol cannot be established.

The standard port monitor deviates from the LPR standard in the following ways:

  • The standard port monitor does not conform to the RFC 1179 requirement that the source TCP port must lie between port 721 and port 731. The standard port monitor uses ports from the general, unreserved pool of ports (1024 and above).

  • The standard port monitor sends a print job to the spooler without determining the actual job size and designates a default job size, regardless of the actual size of the job. The LPR standard states that print jobs must include information about the size of the job the port monitor sends. Sending a print job that contains job size information requires that the port monitor spool the job twice—once to determine size, and once to send the job to the spooler. Spooling the job once, by using the standard port monitor, improves printing performance.

The standard port monitor can send print jobs to the LPD service running on a print server. For more information about LPD, see “Port Monitor” later in this chapter.

Improved status information

The standard port monitor is compatible with RFC 1759, the standard printer management information bases (MIB). As a result, on devices that support SNMP and RFC 1759, the standard port monitor can provide detailed status.

For more information about printing to devices located on other platforms, see “Printing from Other Operating Systems” earlier in this chapter.

To configure a standard TCP/IP port by using the standard port monitor

  1. Select an installed printer, click File, and then click Properties.

  2. Click the Ports tab, and then click Add Port.

  3. Click Standard TCP/IP Port, and then click New Port.

  4. In the Printer Name or IP Address text box, type a name or the IP address of a print device.

  5. In the Port Name text box, type a host-resolvable port name, which can be any character string, or use the default name that the wizard supplies, and then click Next.

  6. If prompted by the Additional Port Information Required dialog box, click Standard, and then select one of the devices listed.

    – or –

    Click Custom, and then configure the port by using the Configure Standard TCP/IP Port Monitor dialog box. (If you do not know details about the port, use Generic Network Card.)

  7. When prompted for the protocol, select either RAW (preferred) or LPR.

  8. If the wizard detects that the device supports multiple ports, as indicated in the Tcpmon.ini file, it prompts you to select a port.

    Note The system sends an SNMP get command to the device. An SNMP get command asks for the status of a device. In this case, the system uses the SNMP get command to request a status check from that printer. By using the SNMP values returned from the get command, the system determines device details and the appropriate device options are displayed for further selection. For example, you can select the correct printer port.

  9. Select a port from the list, and finish the wizard.

    The new port is listed on the Ports tab of the Properties dialog box.

Reconfiguring the standard port monitor

The standard port monitor port can be reconfigured in the printer Properties dialog box. On the Ports tab, click Configure Port. The standard port monitor has its own Configure dialog box.

Caution The Configure Standard TCP/IP Port Monitor dialog box does not verify that the options you select are correct. If they are incorrect, the port does not work. Check with the printer manufacturer to see whether the device supports SNMP.

Status reporting

Printers return print status over SNMP. Because the standard port monitor is compatible with SNMP, it allows detailed status reporting when the printer provides it. Printers that do not comply with the SNMP standard do not return status information, and when an error occurs during printing, the spooler either displays a general printing error or fails to detect an error.

Internet Printing

Windows XP Professional supports Internet printing. This makes it possible to use printers located anywhere in the world by sending print jobs using Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). Using Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) or a Web peer server, Windows XP Professional creates a Web page that provides information about printers and provides the transport for printing over the Internet. Using the Internet, printers can be used to replace fax machines or postal mail.

Use an Internet printer as you would any other Windows XP Professional installed printer.

For more information about installing an Internet printer on your computer, see “Installing Network and Internet Printers” earlier in this chapter.

For more information about managing print jobs sent by using Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) version 1.0, see “Printing over the Internet” later in this chapter.


Windows XP Professional supports printing to Universal Serial Bus (USB) printers. USB is composed of an external bus architecture for connecting USB-capable peripheral devices to a host computer, and a communication protocol that supports serial data transfers between a host system and USB-capable peripherals.


Infrared Data Association (IrDA) is a system of exchanging information between computers by using infrared transmissions without a cable connection. IrDA can be used between any two devices that support IrDA, such as computers and printers. Windows XP Professional supports printing by using an IrDA device.

IrDA is a point-to-point protocol based on TCP/IP and Winsock APIs. IrDA can be used to exchange data between devices other than Windows that use the IrDA protocol. IrDA exchanges data at rates approaching the rates that are provided by LAN connections.

IEEE 1284.4 Protocol

Windows XP Professional supports IEEE 1284.4, a protocol that allows Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 print servers to send data to multiple parts of a single multifunction peripheral (MFP) device. IEEE 1284.4 is a driver that multiplexes data so that the operating system can communicate with multiple functions of an MFP over a single connection.

IEEE 1284.4 is installed when an IEEE 1284.4-enabled device is detected. No manual installation or configuration is required.

Monitoring and Managing Internet Print Jobs

A range of permissions affects how users manage printers and receive information about printer status.

Windows XP Professional gives you quick access to basic information about printers. In Microsoft Internet Explorer, you can make the mouse pointer pause on a printer to display the printer name, status, location, and number of documents in its queue.

Printers that are hosted by Windows XP Professional, Windows 2000 servers, or Windows Server 2003 servers that have Internet Information Services (IIS) or a Peer Web Server can receive jobs sent by users who use the Internet Printing Protocol. Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003 Internet print servers provide information to clients about the status of print jobs and the availability of printers.

You can view and manage the print jobs on a server by using the Internet print server’s Web pages. These pages provide information about jobs in the print queue, including the job name, status, owner, number of pages, page size, and time of submission.

You can view the printer device status for more information about a particular printer. This page provides current printer information, such as:

  • The text in the printer’s local display

  • Paper-tray capabilities and status, such as the approximate number of pages available in each tray

  • Console lights illuminated, such as Online, Data, or Attention, depending on the printer and whether it supports the standard printer MI32

Printing Concepts

When users print, the computer completes several steps that involve a set of components—including executable files, drivers, device interfaces, and dynamic-link libraries—that work together to create the printed output. Understanding how this process works helps you understand what happens when you print a document and how to solve printing problems. Printing has two parts: the printing process and the print components. The two parts make the printing process possible. When printing to an Internet print server, the print server adds to the standard print process by creating an interface for users.

Printer Pooling

A printer pool associates two or more identical printers with one set of printer software. To set up a printer pool, add a printer by using the Add Printer Wizard, and then assign an output port to all printers that are identical to the original printer. Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 do not limit the number of printers in a pool. When a document is sent to the printer pool, the first available printer prints it. This configuration maximizes printer use and minimizes the wait for completed print jobs.

Efficient printer pools have the following characteristics:

  • All printers in the pool are the same model.

  • Printer ports can be of the same type or mixed, such as parallel, serial, and network.

  • It is recommended that all printers be in one physical location because it is impossible to predict which printer receives the document, making it hard for users to find their print job.

    Note When print jobs are sent through a standard TCP/IP port to devices that are RFC 1759 compliant, and the printer in a pool stops printing after a set time, the current document is rescheduled on another port. Succeeding documents print to other printers in the pool until the nonfunctioning printer is fixed.

Printing Processes

The printing process is divided into three phases:

  • Client processes

  • Spooler processes

  • Printer processes

These groups of steps include the following specific actions, shown in Figure 11-2.

Figure 11-2 Printing process

Figure 11-2 Printing process

The steps depicted in Figure 11-2 include the client, spooler, and printer processes.

Client Processes

The client processes include:

  • A user sends a print job from an application. The application calls the Graphics Device Interface (GDI).

  • The GDI calls the printer driver for information, which the GDI uses to create a job in printer language.

  • The GDI delivers the job to the spooler.

Spooler Processes

The spooler processes include:

  • The client side of the spooler (Winspool.drv) makes a remote procedure call (RPC) to the server side spooler (Spoolsv.exe).

  • Spoolsv.exe calls the print router (Spoolss.dll).

  • The router (Localspl.dll) sends the print job to the local print provider (LPP) or the remote print server if the job is being sent to a network printer.

  • The LPP polls the print processors to find one that can handle the data type of the job.

  • The LPP sends the job to the print processor, which modifies the job as required to make it print properly.

  • The print processor sends the job to the page separator. A separator page is added if required.

  • The job is sent to the appropriate port print monitor. If print is bidirectional, the job is first sent to a language monitor, such as the Printer Job Language (PJL) monitor, and then sent on to the port monitor. If the job is unidirectional, the job is sent directly to the port monitor.

Printer Processes

The printer processes include:

  • The printer receives the print job from the print spooler.

  • The printer translates the print language into a bitmap, which it then prints.

Printer Components

Many components work together to make the printing process possible. Different components are used at different times, depending on the type of print job being produced and the types of hardware being used.

Graphics Device Interface

The application calls the Graphics Device Interface (GDI) to begin the process of creating a print job. The GDI reads the driver information for the printer to get information about how to format the job. Using the document information from the application and the print device information from the printer driver, the GDI renders the print job in a language that the printer reads.

Printer Drivers

Printer drivers contain information that is specific to the printer that is used. Printer drivers reside on users’ computers and are used by the GDI to render print jobs.

Windows XP Professional includes the most common printer drivers, but you might need to provide third-party printer drivers for some printers. When a Windows XP Professional user connects to a printer or installs a Plug and Play printer, the necessary printer drivers are loaded onto the user’s computer if they are available in Windows XP Professional.

The print spooler consists of a group of components that include the print router, the local and remote print provider, the print processor, and the language and port monitors. These components can reside on both the computer sending a job and the network print server receiving print jobs. The print spooler’s components take the print job that the GDI creates, and then modify it so that it has all the required information and formatting to print correctly. If part of the spooler is on a server, the server provides the processing resources for the print job, freeing the user’s computer and improving performance.

Different print servers have different spooler components. In Windows 2000 Server and Windows Server 2003, the print spooler is made up of a router, remote print provider, local print provider, print processor, separator page processor, and language and port monitors.

The print router receives a print job and locates an available print provider that can handle the print job’s protocol. For example, the router might look for a print provider designed to handle RPC print jobs or jobs that were transferred by using HTTP. When an acceptable print provider is found, the router relays the print job from the remote print provider to the chosen local print provider, where the job is modified as needed before printing.

Remote print provider

The remote print provider is part of the client side of the print process. The router gives control of the print job to the first remote print provider the router finds that recognizes the destination printer. A remote print provider sends the print job to the server router only.

Examples of remote print providers include the Windows Network Print Provider and the Novell NetWare Remote Print Provider. When a user sends a print job to a printer on a print server, the remote print provider is on the user’s computer and the local print provider is on the server.

Local print provider

The local print provider receives the print job, writes it to a spool file, and keeps track of information about the job. Spooling a file to disk ensures that the job is saved and printed even if printers are unavailable or a power failure occurs.

The local print provider has two components that are required by the printer type and settings:

  • The print processor makes necessary modifications to the print job and then calls the GDI to render the job. This is important when third-party printers have special requirements. Often, modifications are not required.

  • The separator page processor adds separator pages as required. You can specify separator pages based on your needs. Most separator pages include information such as the user and computer that created the job, or the date and time the job was created. You can configure the separator page on the Advanced tab of the Printer Properties page.

The escape codes used in creating a separator page are listed in Table 11-4.

Table 11-4 Escape Codes and Functions for a Separator Page

Escape Code



The first line of the separator file must contain only this character. The separator file interpreter reads the separator file command as a delimiter.


Prints the user name of the person who submitted the job.


Prints the job number.


Prints the date the job was printed. The time is displayed in the format specified under Regional and Language Options in Control Panel.


Prints the string of text that appears after the \L escape code. If you enter \LTest, the text “Test” appears in the separator page.


Prints the contents of the file specified by the pathname, starting on an empty line. The contents of this file are copied directly to the printer without processing.


Sets a printer-specific control sequence, where nn is a hexadecimal ASCII code sent directly to the printer. See your printer manual to determine the specific numbers.


Sets the width of the separator page. The default width is 80 characters, and the maximum width is 256 characters. Characters beyond this width are deleted.


Prints text in single-width block characters until \U is encountered.


Ejects a page from the printer. Use this code to start a new separator page or to end the separator page file. If you get an extra blank separator page when you print, remove this code from your separator page file.


Skips the number of lines specified by n (from 0 through 9). Skipping 0 lines moves printing to the next line.


Prints text in double-width block characters until \U is encountered.


Turns off block character printing.

After the local print provider passes a job through the print processor and separator page processor, it sends the job from the spooler to the appropriate port print monitor.

Windows XP Professional supports two kinds of print monitors:

  • Language monitors

  • Port monitors

Port monitors are subdivided into:

  • Local port monitors

  • Remote port monitors

Windows XP Professional provides three types of print monitors: language, local port, and remote.

Language monitor

The language monitor provides the language that the client and printer use to communicate. If the printer is bidirectional, the language monitor allows you to monitor printer status. You can request configuration and status from the printer, and the printer sends unsolicited status (such as “Paper tray empty”) to the client.

Local port monitor

The local port monitor (Localspl.dll) controls parallel and serial input/output (I/O) ports where a printer might be attached. It sends print jobs to local devices, including those on familiar ports such as LPT1 and COM1.

Remote port monitor

The remote port monitor includes all other port monitors supplied with Windows XP Professional, and it enables printing to remote printers. An example is Lanman Print Services Port.

Port Monitor

The local print provider (Localspl.dll) that comes with Windows XP Professional includes the local port monitor and the Winprint print processor. The local port monitor controls the parallel and serial ports to which printers are connected. The standard port monitor is used for most network print jobs. Port monitors such as the NetWare Port Monitor or AppleTalk Port Monitor control other ports, such as TCP/IP or Ethernet.

Windows XP Professional includes port monitors that enable printing to different types of printers in different network environments. Following is a list of some of the port monitors included with Windows XP Professional:

  • The preferred network port monitor in Windows XP Professional is the standard port monitor. SNMP is used to configure and monitor the printer ports. In addition to the standard port monitor, Internet printing adds an HTTP print provider. For more information, see “Methods of Sending Print Jobs” earlier in this chapter.

  • The local port monitor is the standard monitor for printers connected directly to your computer. If you add a printer to your computer by using a serial or parallel port (such as COM1 or LPT1), this monitor is used.

  • The USB port monitor is the monitor used for USB printers connected directly to your computer. If you plug your USB printer into your computer, this monitor is used.

  • LPR Port monitor is used to send jobs over TCP/IP to a print server or printer running an LPD service. LPR Port monitor can be used as an alternative to the standard port monitor to Unix print servers. Use LPR Port if your LPD target server requires an RFC 1179-compliant Line Printer Remote protocol.

    Note The standard port monitor is the preferred port monitor for Windows XP Professional. The standard port monitor supports the RAW protocol, TCP/IP printing, and the non-RFC LPR protocol.

  • PJL Monitor (Pjlmon.dll) communicates in Printer Job Language (PJL). Any bidirectional print device that uses a bidirectional port monitor that uses PJL can use the PJL language monitor.

Printing over the Internet

A user on a computer that runs Windows XP Professional can access information about available printers and send jobs to those printers on a Windows 2000 print server, or the user can send jobs to any print server that supports IPP v1.0. To find an Internet printer and send a print job to that printer, the following must occur:

  1. A user connects to a Windows 2000 or Windows Server 2003 print server over the Internet by typing the URL for the print device.

  2. The print server requires the client to provide authentication information. This ensures that only authorized users print documents on your printer, rather than making your printer available to everyone with an Internet connection.

  3. After a user has authorized access to the print server, the server presents status information to the user by using Active Server Pages (ASP), which contain information about currently available printers.

  4. Windows XP Professional users can connect to any of the available printers and get information about each printer’s capabilities by using ASP.

  5. After users connect to an Internet printer, they can send documents to the print server by using IPP v1.0. IPP sends the job to the designated Internet printer.

    Note Only computers that run Microsoft Windows 95, Microsoft Windows 98, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), or Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional and that use the Internet Printing Client can connect to available printers. Microsoft Windows NT and Microsoft Windows 3.1 cannot connect.

Figure 11-3 shows the steps that the Internet printing process might include.

Figure 11-3 Internet printing process

Figure 11-3 Internet printing process

Print jobs are sent in a variety of formats, each suited to different computing environments.


Enhanced metafile (EMF) is the standard format for print jobs created on Windows XP Professional. EMF files are highly portable because the instructions for the print job are assembled on the user’s computer, and the spooler completes the processing of the print job.

EMF data is created by the GDI. After an EMF job is sent to the spooler, control is returned to the user, and the spooler finishes processing the job. This limits how long the user’s computer is busy.


RAW is a common data type for clients other than Windows. The spooler does not modify RAW data. It is sent directly to the printer.

RAW [FF Appended]

RAW [FF Appended] is exactly like the RAW data type, except that a form-feed character is appended to the end of each print job. The last page of a RAW document does not print on a Printer Control Language (PCL) printer, so appending a form feed is necessary.

RAW [FF Auto]

RAW [FF Auto] is exactly like the RAW data type, except the spooler checks the document for a form-feed character at the end of the job. If there is no form feed, the spooler adds one.


Text tells the spooler that the data is ANSI text and modifies it if necessary. The print processor takes the text and calls GDI for playback. The text is printed using the printer’s default font.

Text data is composed of values from 0 through 255. Each value represents a different character. This data type is based on the ANSI standard, and if an application that has another character set creates text data it does not print. This often presents a problem in the extended character range, represented by values above 127.

Troubleshooting Printing Problems

This troubleshooting section provides several approaches to solving printing problems. The first section describes common printing problems and solutions. The second section describes the parts of the printing process. You can learn how printing works, determine where a printing problem occurs, and fix that part of the process.

Common Printing Problems

This section describes some of the most common printing problems and their solutions. You can use the following examples to solve similar problems.

Cannot Administer Printers after an Upgrade

Power users are now required to have the Load and unload device drivers permission to administer printers. For more information about this new requirement, see “Installing Local Printers” earlier in this chapter.

Cannot Install a Plug and Play Printer

Windows XP Professional includes more printer drivers than previous versions of Windows, but if the printer driver you need is not included with Windows XP Professional, your computer does not automatically install your printer, even if it is Plug and Play. You can install the printer by using the Add Printer Wizard. Click Have Disk to provide the required drivers.

If required drivers are available, you might want to restart your computer. If a Plug and Play printer requires manual detection, you must restart the computer before installing the printer. Manually detected Plug and Play printers typically use parallel port connections.

Cannot Find a Printer by Location

Searching for a printer by location requires that you use Windows XP Professional or another client enabled in Active Directory.

Make sure your searches match the printer location format used in your environment. For more information about printer location formats, see “Using Active Directory to Find Printers” earlier in this chapter.

Bidirectional Printer Problem

If you encounter a problem with bidirectional printing, disable bidirectional printing and resend your print job.

To disable bidirectional printing
  1. In Control Panel, click Printers.

  2. Right-click the bidirectional printer, and then click Properties.

  3. Click the Ports tab, clear Enable bidirectional support, and then click OK.

Do Not Have Permissions

If a printer requires security permissions, you must have the appropriate permissions from your user account or your user group.

Use a printer that does not require permissions or a printer for which you have permissions. Or ask your administrator to grant you permissions for the printer.

Bad Printer Port or Improperly Formatted Data

Incorrectly configured ports can cause printing failures. LPR ports typically include an IP address, or a fully qualified domain name (FQDN), followed by a queue name, and DNS resolves the address. In that case, an FQDN resolution error can occur. A user might also enter the Windows 2000 Server or Windows Server 2003 queue name instead of the LPD queue name.

To find out whether an incorrect FQDN name is being used, review the event log for your computer for event ID 2004. Event ID 2004 indicates that the target LPD did not respond as expected, which can occur with an incorrect FQDN.

A bad printer port or improperly formatted data error can occur if a user configures a computer to print directly to the printer or to use bidirectional communication when the hardware does not support those functions.

To troubleshoot the TCP/IP port you use for the printer, try configuring the standard TCP/IP port monitor for your printer.

For more information about configuring the Standard TCP/IP Port Monitor, see “Methods of Sending Print Jobs” earlier in this chapter.

Make the following changes to troubleshoot the TCP/IP port:

  • In the Configure Standard TCP/IP Port Monitor dialog box, verify the Port Name and the Printer Name or IP Address. Correct them if necessary.

  • Toggle from one protocol to another. Some printers require that you use one or the other.

  • Select LPR Byte Counting Enabled. Some printers require that jobs accurately represent their size.

For more information about byte counting, see “Methods of Sending Print Jobs” earlier in this chapter.

If you use a multifunctional peripheral (MFP), IEEE 1284.4 might not properly detect your print device. Shut down your computer and printer, turn on your printer, and then turn on your computer. Typically, IEEE 1284.4 recognizes all features of your MFP.

Graphic Images Not Printing as Expected

Disable enhanced metafile (EMF) spooling.

To disable enhanced metafile spooling
  1. In the Printers and Faxes folder, right-click the print server, and then click Properties.

  2. Click the Advanced tab, and then clear the Enable advanced printing features check box.

  3. Click OK.

Pages That Are Only Partially Printed

If you have pages that are only partially printed, try the following suggestions to fix the problem:

  • Check that sufficient memory is available to print the document.

  • Pages print only partially when the page size of the document you want to print is bigger than the page size available to the printer. Adjust your page size in the original document to accurately reflect the page size available to the printer.

  • If text is missing, verify that the font used for the missing text is installed and valid.

  • The printer might need toner. Try replacing the printer’s toner cartridge.

Slow Printing

If the print server is taking an unusually long time to render the job, try defragmenting the server’s disk. Check that there is adequate space for temporary files on the hard disk.

If you use printer pooling to handle a large number of jobs and print jobs take a long time to get to the top of queue, consider adding more printers to the pool to handle the volume of print jobs.

PostScript Printer Returns “Out of Memory” Message

To print the current document, you must allocate more memory for the printer or send smaller print jobs.

To configure PostScript memory, in the Printer Properties dialog box, on the Device Settings tab, modify Available PostScript Memory. You must have Manage printer rights to change Available PostScript Memory.

Break large print jobs into smaller parts to reduce the amount of printer memory required. For example, a ten-page print job can be divided into two five-page jobs.

Computer Stalls During Printing

For local printers:

  • Check that the appropriate printer driver is installed. Reinstall if necessary.

  • Check for adequate space on the hard disk.

For network printers:

  • Check that the server has enough free hard-disk space.

  • Try to disable EMF spooling and send the job in RAW format.

Troubleshooting the Printing Process

A series of actions occurs in the process of completing a print job. Understanding the significance of each part of the process can help you solve printing problems.

Administrator creates print share on print server

A print share makes the printer available to the network. The necessary drivers are stored on the server for distribution to clients, and the print server waits to receive the jobs that the printer produces.

If this step is not properly completed, users might be unable to connect to the printer on the server even if the printer is correctly installed.

Client system connects to the share

Using any Windows XP Professional features, such as Point and Print, the Add Printer Wizard, or the list of printers in My Network Places, you can connect the client to the printer. If necessary, appropriate drivers are downloaded to the client computer and information about the printer is recorded.

If client system connection is not completed properly, the user might not be able to locate the printer in the list of available printers.

Client system creates print job

Users initiate this process by choosing to print a document. If the printer drivers for a user’s computer are not available, the GDI cannot properly create the print job.

Client system sends print job to print share

A network connection between the client and the print server must be available.

The print server must have enough space to accommodate print jobs.

The proper port or language monitor must be available for the printer type. The network connection between the print server and printer must be working.

Printer interprets print job and prints it

The printer must be turned on, online, connected to the network, and functioning properly.

Troubleshooting Printing from an Operating System Other Than Windows

If you have problems printing from Windows XP Professional to a non-Windows print server, the following sections might be helpful.


If printing to a UNIX server fails, make sure that the Lprmon is installed. If it is not installed, you might not be able to produce print information that the server can interpret. For more information about installing the LPR port monitor, see “Methods of Sending Print Jobs” earlier in this chapter. For more information about working with UNIX, see “Printing from Other Operating Systems” earlier in this chapter.


If printing to a NetWare server fails, make sure that you have a client, such as Microsoft Client Service for NetWare or Novell Client 32, installed on your computer. These clients let your computer send print jobs to the NetWare server, which the server then relays to the printer. If this type of client is not installed, you might not be able to produce usable information for the print server. For more information, see “Printing from Other Operating Systems” earlier in this chapter.


If printing from an IBM server fails, make sure that you have connected to the LPT port that corresponds to the printer where you send the job. For more information about the standard port monitor, see “Methods of Sending Print Jobs” earlier in this chapter. If your clients need to communicate with a mainframe computer, make sure that 3270 host emulation software is installed. If your clients need to communicate with an AS/400 system, make sure that 5250 host emulation software is installed.

Typically, problems with fonts occur only when you try to print a document. If printing is taking a very long time or if the result is not as expected, the cause might be your fonts. To solve a font problem, try reinstalling the font that does not print as expected or try printing from another computer.

Font does not print correctly

Sometimes fonts become corrupted. Reinstalling the font might solve the problem even if the font does not appear to be corrupted.

Printed font is distorted or unreadable

Try a different font size or a different font to see whether the problem is specific to the particular font and font size you use.

Paste the text into another document and try to print. If the problem persists, the problem might be specific to the font. Reinstall the font.

Pages only partially print when the page size of the document you are trying to print is bigger than the page size available in the printer. Be sure you are not sending documents that cover a larger size of paper than the printer can accommodate.

The printer might not have enough memory to print large documents. If this is the case, increase the available virtual memory, add more RAM to the printer, or print smaller sections of the document.

Slow performance

If you are working with an unusually large number of fonts, system performance degrades. Keeping fewer than 1000 fonts installed on your computer helps maintain performance.

New fonts are added the first time you restart your computer after installing them. This slows the startup process. When the computer is restarted later, the process finishes more quickly as a result of font caching, but startup might still be slower than before. Enumeration of fonts can also slow your system. Font enumeration can occur when an application starts up or when all the available fonts must be listed, such as when you select a font or open the Fonts folder.

Faxing in Windows XP Professional

If you have a fax modem attached to your computer, you can send or receive fax documents directly from your computer.

Windows XP Professional detects fax modems, but it is recommended that you refer to the documentation for your fax modem for other steps that you must take to install your modem. To use the fax service that Windows XP Professional provides, you must manually install the service.

To add fax service

  1. In Add or Remove Programs, click Add/Remove Windows Components.

  2. Select Fax Service, click Next, and then click Finish.

Configuring Fax Service

You can configure Fax Service to archive and print received faxes, to archive sent faxes, to retry sending faxes that could not be sent, and to automatically clean up unsent faxes after a certain period.

Configuring Fax Service Options

You might want to configure several attributes of your fax service first, such as security settings and how fax jobs are stored and sent.

To configure fax service options
  1. In All Programs, point to Accessories, Communications, Fax, and then click Fax Console.

  2. In the Fax Console, click Tools, and then click Fax Printer Configuration.

  3. Set your preferences:

    • To set archiving preferences for sent and received faxes, click the Archive tab.

    • To set notification preferences, click the Tracking tab.

    • To set retry preferences on sent faxes and an automatic cleanup for unsent faxes, click the Devices tab, and then click Properties.

The Fax (Local) Properties dialog box is shown in Figure 11-4.

Figure 11-4 Fax (Local) Properties dialog box

Figure 11-4 Fax (Local) Properties dialog box

Entering User Information for Faxing

This is the default information for the fax cover sheet. The User Information tab is shown in Figure 11-5.

Figure 11-5 User Information in the Fax Properties dialog box

Figure 11-5 User Information in the Fax Properties dialog box

To configure fax user information by using the Fax Configuration Wizard
  1. In All Programs, point to Accessories, Communications, Fax, and then click Fax Console.

  2. On the Fax Configuration Wizard properties page, click Next, and then enter your information.

The information you enter on this page creates the default information in the Send Fax Wizard, which appears when you send a fax. You can change this information each time you send a fax.

Setting Printing Preferences for Faxes

You can configure the default options for sending fax jobs to a particular fax printer. By configuring fax options, you can control the resolution, orientation, and paper size.

To configure fax job defaults
  1. In Control Panel, double-click the Printers and Faxes icon.

  2. Right-click the Fax icon, and then click Printing Preferences.

  3. Make your choices on the Fax Printing Preferences properties page.

Sending Faxes

When you prepare a fax to be sent, use the Send Fax Wizard to provide the information needed to send your fax. The Send Fax Wizard includes a number of optional pages that you can use to configure fax job attributes.

Recipient information

Use this page to enter the phone number or numbers to which you want to send the fax, including fax numbers in your Microsoft Windows or Microsoft Outlook address book. Specify special dialing rules, such as first dialing 9 for an outside line.

Preparing the cover page

Use this page if you would like to add a cover page and a note for the recipient.


Use this page to determine when to send the fax. By scheduling transmissions, you can take advantage of lower telephone rates during specific times.

Summary page

Use this page to confirm the configuration you have chosen before sending the fax.

Preview Fax button

Use this button to preview your fax before sending it.

After you use the Send Fax Wizard, Windows XP Professional uses the modem to send your job to the fax numbers you have indicated unless you specified that the job be sent at a later time. If the transmission fails, Windows XP Professional tries to resend the job at regular intervals depending on your preferences.

To configure the number and frequency of retries

  1. In Control Panel, double-click Printers and Faxes.

  2. Right-click Fax, click Properties, click the Devices tab, and then select a device.

  3. Click the Properties button.

  4. On the Send tab, set your Retries preferences.

Additional Resources

These resources contain additional information related to this chapter.

  • “Active Directory” in the Distributed Systems Guide of the Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Resource Kit, for information about finding a printer by an attribute, such as location

  • Chapter 17, “Managing Authorization and Access Control,” for more information about setting permissions

  • “Configuring TCP/IP” on the companion CD, for information about printer location

  • Chapter 9, “Managing Devices,” for information about Plug and Play technology

  • The following articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base at http://support.microsoft.com, for additional help on troubleshooting printing problems:

    • 314085 “Troubleshooting general printing problems in Windows XP”

    • 314073 “How to troubleshoot network printing problems in Windows XP”

    • 308028 “Resources for troubleshooting printing problems in Windows XP”