How to cancel printing or delete a print jobs that is stuck in the print queue –Print Spooler error

From time to time especially on HP printers the print jobs get stuck and nothing gets printed out. You will get error that print spooler server and print job failed. I have notice this especially happening during printing of PDF files on HP LaserJet printers. I had not the same issue on Lexmark or Samsung printers far.

How do you troubleshoot this? Well, there are 2 methods – manual and script for lazy sysadmins J

Manual STEP by STEP:

  • Does not matter if this is Windows XP or Windows 7
  • Go to START >RUN > type services.msc (note if you are in Windows 7 – user right click and run as Admin with proper rights)
  • Services window opens on your screen
  • Scroll down and locate service Print Spooler
  • Right click on the service and select STOP
  • Now navigate to C:WindowsSytem32spoolPrinters> (or type in the START>RUN = %systemroot%system32spoolprinters )
  • Once you are inside of the PRINTERS folder – delete everything
  • Once done, go back to services.msc and locate Print Spooler service, right click and START the service
  • You are now able to print again and the Print Spooler is running

More automated with small batch file

  • Open Notepad
  • Copy and paste the lines bellow to Notepad
net stop spooler
del %systemroot%system32spoolprinters*.shd
del %systemroot%system32spoolprinters*.spl
net start spooler
  • Save the file as DeletePrintJobs.cmd
  • Save the file on Desktop or under C:> – whenever is easy for you to locate the file when needed
  • Once the print spooler and print jobs failed – just run the DeletePrintJobs.cmd
  • It will do all the steps for you, in case you are on Windows 7 – do not forget use right click and run the file as Administrator

Another option to fix it is to download one handy FREE utility called Print Flush. This simple tool does all above, simply clear the printing queue and get you up running very quickly. Download link for Print Flush is here

Microsoft KB: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/946737