Network load balancing print servers using VIP issue

By Kenman87 ·
Hey there

I am currently in the process of developing/testing a proposed printing environment for our department and have run into a bit of an issue.

We have gone with the approach of have a network based VIP configured on a Cisco device which will forward packets to 2 identical print servers.

The servers are running Windows Server 2003 SP2.

The specs are:
Server1, IP add:
Server2, IP add:
VIP ip address: DNS record: "printtest"

The issue is this. When I browse to \\Server1\ I can see the shared print queues and can print to them with no issues. The same is for \\Server2\. However when I browse to \\printtest\ i can see the shared print queues but when i try to connect to the printer, i am getting an "Access is denied" error. The same issue is happening for both XP and Vista clients. The exact error message is:
"Operation could not be completed (error 0x00000005). Access is denied"

I have configured "DisableStrictNameChecking" in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\lanmanserver\parameters with a Decimal value of 1.

I have also tried creating the OptionalNames REG_MULTI_SZ reg key in the same directory with "printtest" as a parameter but doesnt seem to have helped.

I then had the idea that it may be an issue to do with Kerberos authentication so I created a computer object in AD for "printtest" with the option to "Trust this computer for delegation to any service (Kerberos only)" selected but this did not help.

I even tried adding the "Everyone" group to the printer's security but this also failed.

The VIP has been configured to forward to the 2 ip address based on least connections on ports 445,88,135,137,138 and 139. I have eliminated the possibility that it may be a load balancing issue on the VIP side by shutting down Server2 so all packets are directed to Server1.

I have set up Wireshark packet captures on both my workstation and Server1 but havent been able to find anything useful.
Here is the output from my pc im getting when the issue occurs in the form of:

Srcaddr; Destaddr; Protocol; Info

1.;; SPOOLSS; OpenPrinterEx request, \\printtest\myprinter

2.;; SPOOLSS; OpenPrinterEx response, Access denied

(where my workstation is

Has anyone got any ideas as to why I am getting this error?


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RE: Network load balancing print servers using VIP issue

by lumin In reply to Network load balancing pr ...

I am about to try the same thing.
I think Windows RPC uses a much broader range of ports than what you have specified and may be the root of your issue.
I am about to impliement what is suggested in this article:
Only I will substitute NLB settings with Cisco CSS settings.

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Print Server Load Balancing using VIP

by switch09 In reply to Network load balancing pr ...

Hi Brady,
i am in process of building same testing environment.

Need help, on how to setup a printer to send jobs to VIP, and what setting i need to do on print serve to take those jobs forwarded from VIP

I would really appreciate if you can guide me through the process

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