Print Jobs Not Being Tracked by PaperCut

Help! I can print successfully, but my jobs aren’t getting tracked at all in PaperCut - what’s going wrong?

There are various scenarios that could lead to PaperCut being unable to monitor users print jobs. Below are some troubleshooting tips to ensure that you are able to capture print jobs correctly.

Note that this article covers the scenario where you can print successfully (the job comes flying out of the printer), but when you look at the user logs, or print logs in PaperCut - you can’t see any record of that job.

Check the PaperCut print provider service is running

It may look like everything is up and running, as you can access the PaperCut admin interface, but for some reason print jobs are not being tracked.

When PaperCut is installed it installs three services:

  1. PaperCut Application Server. The PaperCut Application server service is the main service controlling print servers, devices, the database and GUI Admin/User front end you interact with and use to configure PaperCut.
  2. PaperCut Print Provider. This does all the hard work in the background and monitors print jobs and sends the print job information to the server.
  3. PaperCut Web Print Server. This PaperCut service is responsible for processing web print jobs.

The Application service can function without the Print Provider services running, so it is important to double check that the Print Provider is running. PaperCut needs this service in a running state to be able to track print jobs.

If the print jobs not being tracked are going through a secondary print server then make sure the Print Provider service on the secondary is running as well as being configured correctly. We have great information on how to setup a secondary server in Chapter 14.

Check to make sure that you are printing to a print queue being monitored by PaperCut

It is important to understand a few basics on how PaperCut monitors printers. A printer can have multiple print queues installed on one or more computers and to PaperCut each print queue will appear as a different printer.

PaperCut can only work by tracking local print queues on the main application server or a computer running the PaperCut secondary server service. Local print queues may include networked printers, such as those with their own network cards using a local TCP/IP port or physically connected printers attached via LPT or USB. Please double check the print queue on the print server is installed as a local print queue. For more information concerning adding print queues see here.

You can easily see what print queues are being monitored by PaperCut by logging into the Admin interface and selecting the Printers tab.

Check to see that you are printing to the correct print queue.

Now you have checked the print queues are setup correctly you need to make sure your users are printing to the right print queue. If you have printers installed as local print queues on one or more print servers then the print queue should be shared and your users print to the share.

Users should not be printing directly to the IP address of the printer, everything must pass through a print queue that PaperCut is monitoring.

It is possible to monitor workstation attached printers by installing the PaperCut secondary server on the workstation, but shared network printers are best hosted on a print server and shared to client workstations. Please see Chapter 14 for more information on secondary servers.

A great test to check you are printing to the server based print queue is to access the server side print queue and pause printing, on Windows this is done from the Printer menu on a print queue.

Then send a print job from the client to the printer, if everything is setup correctly then the print job should go into the print queue on the server and enter a paused state as per the screen shot below.

If the print job does not appear on the server based queue then you are not printing to the correct print queue.

Check to see that the user printing is listed in PaperCut.

PaperCut is licensed on a per user basis and PaperCut administrators must ensure everyone they want to be tracked by PaperCut is in the Users tab of PaperCut.

If a user that PaperCut does not recognise prints to a print queue it is monitoring then our “On Demand User Creation” rules kick in. The default On Demand User Creation option is to create the user on demand, this means users are created when they interact with PaperCut for the first time E.g. when they print. The on demand rules can be configured so it is possible that when a user that PaperCut does not recognize prints the job is ignored by PaperCut.

It is important to check that the user account that you are printing under is displayed in the Users tab in the Admin interface. Follow the link for more information on user sync and on demand user creation rules.

Check your Secondary server versions.

If you find print jobs from a secondary server are not being tracked, then it is important to make sure the version of PaperCut on the secondary server is equal or below the version of PaperCut running on the primary server.

Check you are printing as the correct user.

By looking for it in the master job log in the Admin Console (PrintersJob Log) you will see which user and printer was recorded. You may need to set the filter for the date and time of print if it is a high volume print environment.

  • Occasionally a print job is recorded under the wrong user in a terminal server setup because of a missing configuration step. Following the instructions here will correct the problem.
  • If the print job is being recorded under the name of the workstation please follow the procedure listed here.
  • Some pre service pack 2 2008 installs can also cause issues with wrong usernames, we have further information on how to fix this issue here.

Check that Windows Branch Office Direct Printing is disabled

When Branch Office Direct Printing (BODP) is enabled on a Windows Print queue, it allows the workstation to send a print job to the physical printer even when the print server is offline. This could potentially allow a print job to go untracked by PaperCut. The solution is to either disable BODP on your Windows Print Server or to install the PaperCut Direct Print Monitor on your workstation to ensure the print jobs are tracked. To disable BODP, right click on your printer in the Windows Print Management Console and choose “Disable Branch Office Direct Printing”.

Categories: Troubleshooting Articles, Print Jobs, Charging

Keywords: printer setup, not monitoring, not working, balance not going down, balance not updating, jobs not being paused