Connected printers not showing in 'Devices and Printers' - Windows 8

    General discussion

  • Ok, I'm probably not the first person to ask about this.

    Why on earth, can I not see any of my connected network printers under 'Devices and Printers' of Windows 8? The devices are without question, 100% connected and registered with the OS, as evidenced from their presence within the 'Print Queues' section of Device Manager, and various software packages, when accessing the 'Print' dialog. I can't even find any evidence of the printers within Print Management! What is going on?

    Thursday, February 07, 2013 12:19 PM

All replies

  • HI,

    I suggest to temporary disable firewall and antivirus program, and re-connect the network printer for test. Also update the printer driver to the latest version

    Or you can try to create another administrator account and login to see if the same issue occurs.

    Leo Huang
    TechNet Community Support

    Monday, February 11, 2013 2:36 AM
  • Hi Leo. Both of your options failed miserably, I'm afraid!
    Monday, February 11, 2013 1:59 PM
  • Hi!

    I'm having the exact same Problem here.

    It happens on all of our Win8 Enterprise machines: Printers not showing up in "Devices and Printers" but in all other Software (like Office Word). Users can print fine. All Printer Options are available. It's just not possible to set the Default Printer using the GUI.

    Key Setup of our environment:

    - created master Image of Win8 Enterprise sysprepped /generalize

    - captured Image and put into WDS

    - deployed master Image to Destination PC in Audit Mode, finalized all Drivers and finally sysprepped

    - After OOBE, PCs are automatically added to the domain

    Regardless of what platform the PC is, always having this issue. Can someone help please?

    Tuesday, June 11, 2013 8:47 PM
  • I have the same issue. Not to mention the  devices and printers windows takes a long time to open
    Thursday, August 01, 2013 2:47 PM
  • I have the same issue. If we perform the power shell command get-printer , the printer is listed. We can also choose the printer under applications as word or excel. For me was the question how to get this printer as default.

    1. start Power Shell as administrator and perform  the following command :

    (New-Object  -ComObject WScript.Network).SetDefaultPrinter(‘your network printer’)

    see Microsoft Document dd347648

    2.The second method is only a trick to get the Printer properties. Take the printer offline, try to print a document, double click in the taskbar on the printer icon you can get the printer properties and there you can define the printer as default.

    Tuesday, September 03, 2013 8:41 AM
  • I found this depends on how you setup the printer.

    If it's in the list when you want to add a printer and select it, it will show up. If you tell it, it's not in the list and set it up manually using \\server\printshare then it may or may not show up.

    When you choose to print in an app, it's listed. It's also listed under Device Manager as a print queue.

    However, to get it to show up, change the view to some other view. My view was details. I changed it to large icons and the printers showed up. I could then change it back to detail and they would still be listed. Restarting the print spooler, disabling/re-enabling Bluetooth Support, restarting Devices and Printers, right-clicking and clicking refresh, pressing F5 for a refresh, logging out and logging back in, restarting the computer ALL have no effect but changing the view, does. Ridiculous?

    The only one that is NOT listed is one setup as a TCP/IP printer and that is because SNMP was turned off, is my guess. You can still print to it from any app but you cannot select it as the default from Devices and Printers because it doesn't list. I'm going to turn SNMP back on, on the printer, to see if it will then show up and if so, see what happens when I remove it. The reason SNMP is turned off is because on TCP/IP enabled printers in Windows 8, the printer will show offline unless you delete and recreate it. At some point it loses communication and thinks it went offline.  Turn off SNMP and that problem is resolved.

    For \\server\printershare I have found if you remove spaces from the share name, that will resolve those printers from showing offline sometime later. You have to create the share manually because Microsoft will offer the description name with spaces.

    What it looks like is one development group at Microsoft isn't talking to another one. Microsoft, here's a clue. Go back to your old philosophy of:

    Microsoft, making it simple.
    Ease of use.

    Hope that helps some of you.

    Thursday, October 03, 2013 7:01 PM
  • Without warning, 8.1 is thrust upon us and with virtually no choice. We are forced to change, but that is a minor indignity to not being able to do your work, because your printer no longer has the software matching the operating system. Microsoft deserves a big "thumbs down" for insensitivity and disregard of its users. 
    Wednesday, November 06, 2013 4:22 PM
  • Same issue on Win8.1, my printers are added via GPO.

    restart services, fail

    restart PC, fail

    wait 60 minutes and they appear.

    word list them and so does command ;

    C:\Windows\System32\Printing_Admin_Scripts\en-US\> cscript prnmngr.vbs -l

    ..shows the printers...

    Thursday, December 12, 2013 2:30 AM
  • OK I had the same issue. I used Powershell to get rid of it.  from powershell as an admin I did a "Get-Printer | Select name" then I found the name of the printer I wanted. With the name I entered "Remove-Printer %myprintername%"   after that I just re-added and it all looked good.

    Tuesday, January 14, 2014 8:42 PM
  • this worked for me! Thanks. 
    Wednesday, February 12, 2014 1:59 PM
  • Didn't work for me.
    Thursday, May 15, 2014 10:46 AM
  • Once this policy is in place, go to Regedit and create this following Entry:

    Create a New Key {2227a280-3aea-1069-a2de-08002b30309d}

    And Reset PC

    This will create a folder on the Desktop as Printers which when opened gives only the Printer listing.

    Sunday, June 08, 2014 7:00 AM
  • Don't nobody screw with a working Firewall to try debugging this issue.  If you can print, let it go.  MS OS is a time waster. 
    Monday, October 27, 2014 11:35 PM
  • Worked like a charm (making a connected printer visible in "Devices and Printers" in Win 8.1) - but a totally ridiculous "bug".  Thanks very much - you made my day!!
    Thursday, February 12, 2015 1:27 AM
  • Preventing Windows from downloading the device Icon worked for me.

    GPO -> set "Computer Configuration\Policies\Administrative Templates\System\Device Installation\Prevent metadata retrieval" to enabled

    Monday, February 23, 2015 2:46 PM
  • Hi,

    Restart print spooler service, the printer should appear.

    Friday, March 13, 2015 11:17 AM
  • OK I had the same issue. I used Powershell to get rid of it.  from powershell as an admin I did a "Get-Printer | Select name" then I found the name of the printer I wanted. With the name I entered "Remove-Printer %myprintername%"   after that I just re-added and it all looked good.

    This didn't work for me either.
    Friday, March 13, 2015 11:29 AM
  • Hi,

    Restart print spooler service, the printer should appear.

    This didn't work either! I can't believe this is still an issue.
    • Edited by MR JH Friday, March 13, 2015 11:31 AM
    Friday, March 13, 2015 11:29 AM
  • I just did a DVI deployment using Windows 8.1 Enterprise. All printers get deployed using GPO. They show up in applications (like MS Office), but they don't show up on Devices and Printer, neither with the Get-Printer cmdlet.

    Monday, July 13, 2015 4:39 PM
  • Did you manage to fix this issue?

    I found if i restarted the affected computer the printers would then appear by running the below command:

    shutdown /r /t /0



    Thursday, October 01, 2015 9:24 AM
  • Win 8.1 SL

    it's worked for me. Thanks

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 6:43 PM
  • It works up till get printer, but when I put the printer name in, it doesn't work, could this be because of spaces? I say this because get and printer have a dash between them so do all the other commands. REALLY struggling here...
    Monday, May 09, 2016 6:44 PM
  • You can try to delete the printer from "device manager" under print queues, then re-add the printer. Hopefully it works out for you.   
    • Edited by Mr.Robot7 Tuesday, September 13, 2016 3:37 PM
    Tuesday, September 13, 2016 3:37 PM
  • Still having this issue with 2012 R2, running:

    C:\Windows\explorer.exe ::{2227A280-3AEA-1069-A2DE-08002B30309D}

    Shows all printers.

    Monday, September 26, 2016 2:50 PM
  • OK I had the same issue. I used Powershell to get rid of it.  from powershell as an admin I did a "Get-Printer | Select name" then I found the name of the printer I wanted. With the name I entered "Remove-Printer %myprintername%"   after that I just re-added and it all looked good.

    This is a very good solution!!!
    Tuesday, November 08, 2016 9:05 AM
  • How is a Powerhell command a good solution? You add a printer it's actually there you just can't see it, users deserve that. Look for the bug not a solution.
    Tuesday, November 08, 2016 7:11 PM
  • OK I had the same issue. I used Powershell to get rid of it.  from powershell as an admin I did a "Get-Printer | Select name" then I found the name of the printer I wanted. With the name I entered "Remove-Printer %myprintername%"   after that I just re-added and it all looked good.

    This is a very good solution!!!

    It's the most dumb solution ever, it's a workaround but it's to lame to even call it that.
    Tuesday, November 08, 2016 7:30 PM
  • I had the same problem with a new build and If you're like me you don't like the new Windows 8 start menu with all those icons anyway.    I installed classic shell and still had the problem so I did this. 

    1) Click on Classic Shell from All Programs. Go to the Customize Start Menu tab and Right click on
    the Printers Item on the left.  Click Edit.
    2) Delete the command that says "printers" and press Tab 

    3) The Link property should get enabled. Enter this text there,  ::{26EE0668
    4) Delete the label and icon - you will get the correct ones automatically
    from the Link
    5) Change the tip to reflect the new functionality (enter any text you feel
    like).  Presto.  It worked for me and I like Windows 8.1 a lot better now.

    Sunday, November 27, 2016 3:31 PM
  • I thought I would post my (tested) solution to this old problem, as the basic "bug" in the OS has never been fixed.

    For some reason, a default install of Windows 8 (Pro) has the service "Device Setup Manager" set to disabled.

    So, go into "Services", and select the service "Device Setup Manager", and change its start-up type to "Automatic", then start the service.

    Having done this, all the missing printers then appeared in the "Devices & Printers" section of the control panel.

    PS: Anyone who suggests disabling your firewall or turning off your anti-virus, as a fix for your IT problem, clearly doesn't understand your IT problem. ;-)

    Tuesday, December 13, 2016 1:00 PM
  • I think this is solved now anyway, I've installed a fully patched Windows 2012 R2 server and I can't reproduce the issue any longer. So apparently Microsoft fixed this with an update?

    Device Setup Manager service is set to 'triggered' and when I launch Devices & Printers I can see it start.

    Thursday, December 15, 2016 11:41 AM
  • This solution actually worked like a charm. Thanks Martijn
    Wednesday, January 11, 2017 12:11 PM
  • Bless your soul! I installed a new Brother printer on my i7-Win10 Home desktop yesterday and it would not show up in Devices and Printers. Then today, by accident I changed the port on my networked HP LaserJet and it too disappeared. Have spent 6 hours fumbling through the registry, deleting references to my old Canon printer, deleting ports, drivers, etc., to no avail. All the printers were available in a print dialog screen. Just not viewable in Devices and Printers. Activating Device Setup Manager brought all my printers into view. Including things like Quicken PDF printer. Thank you x 1000.
    Sunday, January 22, 2017 11:25 PM
  • Same to me! I have searched a lot and this works:

    So, go into "Services", and select the service "Device Setup Manager", and change its start-up type to "Automatic", then start the service.

    Took me 10 secs to perform this action and it recognizes my printer (brother)


    Wednesday, February 08, 2017 6:56 PM
  • bestia46

    That worked, thanks.


    • Edited by Bob Millard Sunday, February 12, 2017 5:13 PM
    Sunday, February 12, 2017 5:12 PM
  • Lee Technology

    That works.


    Sunday, February 12, 2017 5:14 PM