What to do when you install XP SP2 and can no longer print

Gleaned from the Technical Q&A, here is a solution to a printing problem that a TechRepublic member faced after installing Windows XP SP2.


TechRepublic member e30ric was having a serious printing problem, and so he posed the following question in the Technical Q&A: "After installing Windows XP Service Pack 2, I tried to use my printer and started getting an error message the gist of which was 'Spooler Subsystem App error.' I can turn on the Print Spooler in the Services section of Administrative Tools, but that doesn't make any difference. I've tried to uninstall the printer driver to reinstall an XP upgrade, but the uninstall fails also. My printer is no longer listed in the Device Manager and I can find no help for this problem in the 'Help and Support' section. I tried to do a repair using my original Windows XP Home Edition CD, but got a notification that since I've installed SP2 I can no longer use this disc for anything until I uninstall SP2. Is there any way to repair the 'Spooler Subsystem App,' or reinstall it, or am I going to have to reinstall XP and all the applications I use on a regular basis? The printer is an older Xerox (Workcentre XK35c), if that matters, and I have become quite comfortable using it. Please help!"


Member BFilmFan responded, "It's the Windows Firewall causing the issue. Try these steps to resolve that issue:

  1. Click Start, point to All Programs, then Accessories, then Communications then Network Connections (or you can right click My Network Places on the desktop and choose Properties)
  2. Right-click the Local Area Network or the connection you are using, then click Properties
  3. Click the Advanced tab, and then click Settings
  4. Click the Exceptions tab
  5. Click the File and Printer Sharing checkbox
  6. Click OK (twice)

Also, when you use the netsh command, it can provide the same result as when you go into the Windows Firewall, clicking the Exception tab, and enabling file and printer sharing. To use the netsh command, click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, then click Command Prompt. At the command prompt, type the following line:

netsh firewall set service type = FILEANDPRINT mode = ENABLE

Press Enter."


The text of discussion posts from TechRepublic members has been slightly edited for spelling, punctuation, and clarity.

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