Printers disappear after running the Windows Mobility Print or the PaperCut Pocket/Hive printer installer
“Help! I’m a PaperCut admin, and I don’t see any new printers even after running the Windows Mobility printer installer or the PaperCut Pocket/Hive printer installer successfully! What could cause this problem?”
This knowledge base article applies if you’re using the following:
- Mobility Print client installer for Windows
- PaperCut Pocket/Hive printer installer for Windows
Every once in a while, we hear about users running the Windows Mobility printer installer or PaperCut Pocket/Hive printer installer but being unable to see any new printers afterwards. In these cases, we find that the installer creates the printers successfully but another process deletes them soon after creation! It’s a frustrating problem to be sure, but luckily there are some things we can check that might give us some insights into possible obstacles.
Open Windows Event Viewer and navigate to Applications and Services > Microsoft > Windows > PrintService and enable the Operational Log like so:
After enabling the log, run the installer again and check Event Viewer for errors. If you see event codes 301 or 302, keep reading because this article applies to you! These codes hint at the cause of deletion. The event contains a PID which we can use to discover the responsible process. In most cases, the PID goes hand in hand with svchost.exe. Unfortunately, this doesn’t narrow down the problem very much as Windows calls on the process often.
So what causes this behavior? We’ve compiled the most common solutions to this problem below…
Customers using BitDefender should watch out for a specific feature that interferes with Mobility installer print queue creation. The Dynamic Mode feature changes the BitDefender filter’s aggressiveness depending on the network adapter’s connection profile status. In other words, BitDefender might delete print queues if your network adapter connection profile is Public. To resolve a “Dynamic Mode” issue, you can change the client’s connection profile from Public to Private.
Or, you can follow some instructions provided by one of our customers (thanks Sébastien!) to change the behavior in BitDefender:
NOTE: You can also specify the port for which the rule will be available. If you do not specify the port, the rule will apply to all ports.
The Mobility Printer installer creates print queue connections using the IPP protocol. This feature is normally enabled by default on desktop versions of Windows but must be manually enabled on Windows Server editions. When this is not turned on, you may see that the client was successful, but no printer was added. In the Windows event logs, you may see events 301 and 302 on Windows workstations without the Internet Printing client.
To enable the service, follow these steps:
- Click Start and navigate to Turn Windows features on or off
- Expand Print Services, check the Internet Printing Client, and click OK.
- Restart the Print Spooler service or the entire workstation (either will do).
During the configuration process, the installer reaches out to the Mobility Print server on port 9163. You might see the same Event Viewer codes as above if there’s interference on the port. Take a look at your firewall to see if this and other required ports are open.
There’s one trick we have up our sleeves to diagnose what’s going on. The support team will request that you reproduce the issue and obtain the Windows Mobility Client Logs.
Once we’ve obtained that, we look for the command that is used to install the printer, which may look something like this…
2020–11–10 12:59:37.053 The command to install printer and driver:rundll32.exe printui.dll,PrintUIEntry /if /b “LaserJet-Color [Library](Mobility)” /x /n “Not used” /m “PaperCut Global PostScript” /r "http://papercut.local:9163/printers/LaserJet-Color/users/fbaggins/6caa66dbb1ef679dd33caa3708870eb1b27569878d28777063808fdd354cc68f" /u /q
We then try opening a command prompt window on the workstation and try running that command without the /q (for quiet) flag to see if there is an error message.
The most common error we’ve seen is
Operation could not be completed (error 0×00000704). We haven’t identified all of the reasons why this occurs, but we have seen this happen in two situations…
- Where there is an authenticated proxy or other security appliance that sits on the network between the Mobility Print client and server.
- When the client machine name is greater than 15 characters. Why? On computers with more than 15 character hostnames we see the Print Spooler service frequently fails to load the dll used to create the port, inetpp.dll, on a system restart. Restarting the Print Spooler service after the system has rebooted allows the print system to load this binary.
No dice? Let us know!
We would be happy to troubleshoot this with you directly, so please reach out at support.papercut.com!
Keywords: disappearing, disappear, windows, chupacabra