Windows 8.1 Red Herring: "The server print spooler service is not running."
We have a Laser Printer that is shared via a Windows server. However, one of our Windows 8.1 client couldn't print yesterday. When we tried printing a test page, we get the following error:
Test page failed to print. Would you like to view the print troubleshooter for assistance?
Interesting. We never had problem with the print server before.
So we used Remote Desktop to access the Windows server. Using Administration tool under Control Panel, we loaded up the Services tool. The Print Spooler service seemed to be running fine as shown in the screen shot below. Just for giggles, we stopped and started the Print Spooler server. However, the problem persisted.
Our Windows 8.1 client still can't print. And it still report the Print Spooler being off-line.
So it was time to try rebooting the Windows 8.1 client. We had shut down the Windows 8.1 client. After it powered off, we turned it back on again. We were surprised at how fast it booted up. Then we remembered that Windows 8 had a quick boot feature, where shutting down isn't really fully shutting down.
Anyway, we tried to print again. Problem persisted. We wondered if it had to do with the quick boot. So this time, we used the "reboot" function, rather than "shut down".
Funny with Windows 8, reboot actually does a full shut-down before rebooting, while shut-down doesn't actually shut it down. Go figure the mentality behind that design.
After Windows 8.1 rebooted, it started printing again. It had no problem connecting to our Windows 7 Print Spooler service. Something Windows 8.1 was doing internally caused the problem. And its error message threw on a red herring chase.
Hopefully this post will help someone in the future.
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