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Windows 7 Print Spooler Hangs/Freezes

    Question

  • I'm having an issue with Windows 7 Pro 32bit virtual desktops. The vm's have almost 60 printers installed. The problem I'm having is that randomly when someone tries to print the spooler service hangs up and their printers disappear. The service doesn't actualy crash and stop working, it just hangs up. I've been banging my head against the wall for over a month with no solution. I've rebuilt the vm from scratch twice and it keeps coming back. I'm at a loss as to how to proceed and the client is of course very agitated at the moment. Only thing I can think of at this point is to remove all the printers and add them back on at a time until the issue pops up. However I'd prefere to find a way of isolating which printer is causing this. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, thank you.

    Vincent Sprague

    Friday, August 03, 2012 5:14 PM

Answers

  • No they all have static addresses. My main problem was that I had over 50 printers being loaded. I believe the issue was just simply a conflict of too many printers and/or conflicting print drivers. I was able to convince the management to stop loading 50+ printers for each user and bring it down to a more manageable 5 or so printers based on geographic location.

    Vincent Sprague

    • Marked as answer by Baron164 Monday, January 21, 2013 2:34 PM
    Monday, January 21, 2013 2:34 PM

All replies

  • Hi ,

    We can clear the print spooler queue and make sure there is nothing suck in the print spooler.

    Click start, type cmd in the search bar, right click cmd and run as administrator. Type the following commands and press enter.

    net stop spooler

    del /F /Q %systemroot%\System32\spool\PRINTERS\*

    net start spooler

    Meanwhile, you can test the issue in Clean Boot mode and check if there is some conflicts with the printer.

    If the issue persists, the installed printer driver may be corrupted. Reinstall the printer drivers to diagnose the issue.

    Best Regards.


    Tracy Cai

    TechNet Community Support


    Tuesday, August 07, 2012 8:06 AM
  • Rebooting the spooler fixes the issue temporarily but it's just a work around. I need to find out what keeps causing it to hang up in the first place. I've tried a clean boot already and that didn't help. The problem with reinstalling print drivers is that I have 60 printers and I don't know which printer may be causing the issue. I've already dropped it down to 3 printers and 3 other print devices such as pdf and fax printers which I can't remove. I'm hoping one of the printers still left isn't causing the issue but I won't know until I give it several days and I see whether or not it locks up. I've checked the print service logs but they never show anything useful. Are there any other log files for the spooler that might tell me why it keeps hanging up?

    Vincent Sprague

    Tuesday, August 07, 2012 11:59 AM
  • The virtual desktops. Do they have windows update activated?

    If so, look for Definition Update for Windows Defender - KB915597 (Definition 1.131.1547.0)
    That right there is the root of all your problems with the print spooler.

    Do a system restore to a date before the update was installed and make sure that update is never to be installed again. 

    It took me the entire summer to figure this out.
    I stopped the update using group policy to prevent 2000+ laptops installing this update now when people are coming back from vacation and booting their computers back up

    Wednesday, August 08, 2012 2:16 PM
  • I looked but could not find that update or any other Windows Defender updates installed

    Vincent Sprague

    Thursday, August 09, 2012 3:14 PM
  • Hi ,

    You may update the drivers of those printers which the users use to print or the issue occurs when these printers are working.


    Tracy Cai

    TechNet Community Support


    Friday, August 10, 2012 8:26 AM
  • Since they had 60 printers loading the only way I could think to manage the situation was was to remove as many printers as possible. I was able to get a small test group to only use 3 printers. With just three it has run for 4 days without any issues. I plan on adding in more drives on Monday and see how it goes. I will add a few days every few days until the problem returns and then hopefully I'll be able to determine which printer is causing it.

    Vincent Sprague

    Friday, August 10, 2012 1:40 PM
  • Hi ,

    I am currently standing by for an update from you and would like to know how things are going. If you have any feedback, please let us know.


    Tracy Cai

    TechNet Community Support

    Tuesday, August 14, 2012 6:26 AM
  • After I dropped it down to only 3 printers the issue stopped occuring. I'm adding in a couple printers, waiting a few days, and adding some more. Hopefully by doing this I'll be able to determine which printer/driver is causing the issue.

    Vincent Sprague

    Tuesday, August 14, 2012 11:51 AM
  • Are the printers deployed by Group Policy?

    Try this on a computer and see what happens.

    Log in as Admin
    Make sure Windows Defender is active.

    Start cmd and nagivate to C:\program files\Windows Defender
    Once there type in MpCmdRun.exe -RemoveDefinitions -All and press enter

    This will remove all the Windows Defender definitions.
    Deactivate Windows defender manually under Settings -->Administrator or use a group policy.

    Reboot computer and check the printers.

    Some of the definitions  "secure" intrusion of a hacker using a network printer to access your computer which results in printspooler crashing/freezing or printers deployed using group policy act wierd /disconnect/refuse connection/error out and what not

    Windows Defender should not be used in a domain network. 3rd party Solution should be used (F-secure is an example).

    This totally solved all our issued with printspoolers crashing on win 7 machines.

    Tuesday, August 14, 2012 11:58 AM
  • Windows Defender has been disabled for a very long time, I ran the command and will see if it helps at all.

    Vincent Sprague


    Removing the definitions had no effect on the affected desktops.
    • Edited by Baron164 Wednesday, August 15, 2012 3:45 PM
    Tuesday, August 14, 2012 5:58 PM
  • Baron164,

    Did you end up solving the spooler issue?

    Thursday, December 27, 2012 11:30 AM
  • I had the same symptoms for over a year on a small home wireless network with a networked HP LaserJet P1606dn printer.  At seemingly unpredictable times Office 2010 would hang when trying to print, mainly from one particular laptop running Win7 Home Premium 32-bit.   A temporary recovery (until next occurrence) was to stop/restart the print spooler service or delete/re-install the printer on that laptop.

    Recently I assigned the printer a static IP address and so far have not seen the problem.  See Step 6 in  Printer does not maintain wireless connection.  

    Do your problematic printers have dynamic IP addresses?  If so, maybe they get reassigned at random times which causes problems for some print drivers.  That could be checked by tracking IP addresses for the problematic printers and then looking for a correlation between IP address changes and spooler hangs.











    • Edited by BlueDragon48 Thursday, December 27, 2012 9:44 PM
    Thursday, December 27, 2012 6:50 PM
  • No they all have static addresses. My main problem was that I had over 50 printers being loaded. I believe the issue was just simply a conflict of too many printers and/or conflicting print drivers. I was able to convince the management to stop loading 50+ printers for each user and bring it down to a more manageable 5 or so printers based on geographic location.

    Vincent Sprague

    • Marked as answer by Baron164 Monday, January 21, 2013 2:34 PM
    Monday, January 21, 2013 2:34 PM