PC Repair
Print Spooler Troubleshooting
Print SpoolerIt is not an uncommon occurrence for a printer spooler error to occur. It can happen if you have just installed a new printer, or if you have used you printer with no complications for a long time. Imagine writing that all-important document, slaving over it for hours, only to have a printer spooler error displayed. If you have a deadline to make then this can be your worst nightmare. Print spooler malfunction always seems to happen at the most inopportune moments, but there are a few simple solutions that may be able to help you. It may only be a simple problem in which case you can try a few things and have it fixed in no time.

What is a printer spooler?

The print spooler manages the information sent to your printer to be printed. It acts as an intermediary between your computer and your printer it allows your software to communicate with your hardware when printing. It is a computer program that sequences print jobs by storing them in a buffer until the printer is ready to process them. This allows your printer to work at it's own pace and not get overloaded. It also allows you to continue working while your document is printing. If there is an error in communication then it will result in you not being able to use your printer.

What is a possible cause of a printer spooler error?

If the operation could not be completed then it means that the print spooler has been made inactive. If this is the case then go to the desktop and select 'run'. Type in 'services.msc' into the dialogue box and press enter. This will allow you to access the service management utility. From here you can alter the service to be set to automatic if it isn't already. Once this is done your print spooler will be enabled automatically and you will be able to send information from your software to your printer automatically when you load up Windows. As always when you make a change like this, save the settings and reboot the computer for it to take effect.

What if the printer isn't on the system?

If you have installed a new printer but already have another printer configured this could cause problems. If this is the case you may have to choose which printer you want to use and edit the settings of the printer. You can get registry-editing software to help you with this task. If you want two printers to work together this is also possible but requires changing the settings of the printer to allow you to do so.

What do I do if these options don't work?

If this doesn't work then you may have to completely uninstall the software or the printer and reinstall it. Click on “start' and the select 'run'. A dialogue box will come up and within that type 'control panel', and then OK. Click on 'remove programs', which will let you uninstall the printer. Make sure that the printer is uninstalled by checking under 'printer and fax' Once you have completely uninstalled it then you can reinstall it, and hopefully this will have fixed the problem.

If it still doesn't work?

If you aren't very computer literate, and none of the options above make a difference, you might like to get the advice of someone who has more experience with computers.

Sometimes the spoolsv.exe file can disappear due to power loss or can be a mistake by the user. A Trojan or a corrupted driver can also cause this. If this happens go to the temporary folders of your printer driver and delete all file names with the extensions .shd and .spl. If malware is to blame for your print spooler error then run an anti-virus program. This will locate a spoolsv.exe virus. There are programs that you can download from the Internet if you do not want to visit a technician. Spooler Fix Wizard is recommended and can save you hundreds of dollars. If, however, you want to understand the cause of the problem, and how to fix it in case it happens again then going to a technician might not be a bad idea.

Will cleaning the registry help?

Running a registry-cleaning program might help in the long run, and is recommended on a weekly basis.

Can malware impede the function of my printer?

Any time you surf the Internet or download an application, or click on a pop up box, you open your computer up to malware or spyware that can impair its function. Malware allows other companies or individuals to have access to your private details. It was initially used to track people's movements for research, but is now used for many purposes. If you computer is running slower than usual, or is prone to crashing, then it is recommended that you run anti-virus software to identify and eliminate any viruses.

You may want to run this software regularly to prevent viruses from impeding your computers function. There are plenty of free anti-malware and spyware downloads available, but like the registry cleaner, do you research. If the software has many recommendations, and is from a valid company with a strong history and credentials, then you will be more likely to be able to trust their product and it's effectiveness.

Cleaning the registry and running anti spyware and malware software may help to keep your computer running at it's optimum level and avoid print spooler malfunctions in the long run. If worst comes to worst you may have to uninstall you printer and reinstall it. This takes a little time, but the effort is worth it if it gets you printer working again. Prevention is always better than cure, so try to keep your computer running at its optimum level to avoid problems in the future.