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How to Resolve the Print Spooler Terminating Unexpectedly

Printer Spooler Error

Print Spooler Terminating Unexpectedly

The print spooler error is one of the annoying issues that Windows users often come across. Usually, when one gets rid of old print jobs and restart print spooler, the issue will be resolved. However, if you have any corrupt drivers, then you will have to delete it fully to troubleshoot the printer issue…

The print spooler application manages all print jobs sent to a printer. When someone initiates a print from a device, the data is temporarily stored in the Windows PC, and the spooler feeds it to the target printer in the background. Usually, the print spooler service works fine, but sometimes, users come across certain issues. When no printers are listed in the Print dialog box, the user normally checks if any are shown in the Printers and Faxes folder. If no printers are listed there either, they click on the Add a Printer button in the folder, and sometimes, a printer spooler error message pops up. This particular printer spooler error can be resolved easily enough though.

Identifying the Error

See if you are seeing any of these symptoms.

  • You come across The Printer Spooler Service Terminated Unexpectedly
  • You find Printers and Faxes is empty. To navigate to that, select the Control Panel from the Start menu, choose Devices and Printers, and select Printers and Faxes.
  • When you try to print from an application, you get a message that suggests no printers are installed in the device.

Step One: Stop the Print Spooler

If the spooler service is not already stopped, then go ahead and stop it.

  • Press the Windows key and R key at the same time. This then brings up the Run dialog box.
  • Type services.msc in the dialog box and press Enter, or click the Ok button. This brings up another window that contains the list of Windows services.

Printer Spooler Error

  • Find the Print Spooler service on the list. To find it quickly, select any service and keep pressing P on the keyboard until Print Spooler is highlighted.
  • Then, double-click Print Spooler. This opens the Print Spooler Properties window; click on the Stop button below the Service status, and you are done.

Step Two: Delete Old Print Jobs

Now, you have to clear out print jobs that might just have gotten stuck. At times, this can cause the spooler to fail, which keeps you from printing further documents.

To get rid of print jobs in the print queue, one method is to open the spooler service and clear them from it. However, when this is not possible, the earlier print jobs can also be deleted from the PRINTERS folder. For that, follow the below steps.

  • Open Computer or My Computer from the Start menu.
  • Open the C: drive

Restart Print Spooler

  • Open the Windows folder, navigate to system32 > spool and open PRINTERS.
  • Select all files or folders in PRINTERS by pressing the Ctrl and A keys simultaneously, and press the Delete

Step Three: Start the Print Spooler Again

Now, go back to the Print Spooler Properties, and click the Start button under the Service status. The issue might resolve itslef when you restart print spooler. However, if any of your printer drivers had become corrupt, then you need to do further troubleshooting.

Continue with the Following Steps If Your Printer Driver is Corrupt

First, you have to stop the print spooler again before proceeding.

  • Delete the Corrupt Driver

You will need to manually remove the corrupt driver from the registry. In your Windows system, open Run as mentioned above, type regedit in the dialog box and click Ok. This brings up the Registry Editor. In that, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SYSTEM > CurrentControlSet > Control > Print > Environments and open Windows NT x86 > Drivers. Once you expand Drivers, select the key for the problem driver, right-click on it and choose Delete from the shortcut menu.

  • Start the Spooler Again

Before deleting the driver, and when the spooler is turned on, it would stop whenever users try to print something or access the Printers and Faxes folder. Once the corrupt driver has been deleted, and after you restart the spooler service, these symptoms should disappear. So, go back to Print Spooler Properties and click the Start button.

  • Uninstall Your Printer Software

Ensure that you remove the program from your Windows PC. Is there a suite of printer tools installed in it? If so, get rid of this fully before you could install your printer again.

  • Reinstall the Printer

Once you are done with the above-mentioned steps, go ahead and install the printer again in your system. For that, you can use the setup disc that came with your printer. Else, you can download the printer driver from your printer manufacturer site. Just follow the instructions to complete the installation process.

You should now be able to print. However, if you are still having the spooler issue, you can get in touch with one of our printer service professionals through our toll-free support number.

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