Microsoft Windows 2000 Print Subsystem architecture

The windows 2000 print subsystem architecture consists of several components that turn print data into a printable file, transfer that file to a printer and manage the way in which multiple print jobs are handles by a printer. These components are:

* Printer driver
* Print spooler

Graphical device Interface (GDI)

Is the portion of Windows 2000 that begins the process of producing visual output, whether that output is to the screen or to the printer. It is the part of Windows 2000 that makes WYSIWYG (What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get) output possible.

Printer driver

Is a Windows 2000 software component that enables an application to communicate with a printer through the IP Manager in the Executive Services module in the Windows 2000 kernel.

A printer driver is composed of three subcomponents that work together as sunit:

* Printer graphics driver - responsible for rendering the GDI command into Device Driver

Interface (DDI) commands that can be sent to the printer.

Each graphics driver renders a different printer language, for example,

Pscript.dll handles Postscript printing request,

Rasdd.dll is used by PCL and most dot-matrix printers

* Printer interface driver - you need some means of interacting with the printer and the role of

the printer interface driver is provide that means. It provides the

interface you see when you open the Printers window (Start, Settings, Printers)

* Characterisation data file - provides information to the printer interface driver about the make

and model of a specific type of print device, including its feature such

as double-sided printing, printing at various resolutions and accepting

certain paper sizes

Print Spooler

The print spooler (Spoolss.exe) is a collection of DLLs and device drivers that receives, processes, schedules and distributes print jobs. The spooler is implemented as part of the Spooler service, which is required for printing.

The Spooler includes the following components;

* Print router
* Local and remote print providers
* Print processors
* Print monitor

Printer Across the Network

Few organisations can afford to each user his or her own printer which explains why printing to a remote printer across the network is by far the most common print scenario on Microsoft networks.

Two typical options for printing across the network exit for Microsoft network clients including Window 2000 Professional clients:

* You can print to a printer connected to a print server via a parrallel or serial port
* You can print to a printer connected directly to the network

The main reason to connect a printer directly to the network is for convenience, because the printer doesn’t have to be located near the print server.

Troubleshooting Printing Problems

Printing from Windows 2000 is usually a trouble-free process, but there’s always something that can go wrong. Microsoft recommends following these steps when troubleshooting printing problems:

1. Identify which seven components of the printing process is failing (printer creation and configuration, connecting to a shared printer, creating a printing job, sending the print job to the spooler, processing the spooler job, sending the processed job to the print device, or printing at the device). To find the correct one:

* Analyse the systems of the problem
* Change the configuration as applied to that part of the process
* Test the configuration to see if the print job works

If the print job now work, you found the right part. If not, then it’s time to start over

1. After you identify the problem, look for documented problem solutions online, in the manuals that ship with Windows 2000 or the printer or in the Microsoft Knowledge Base (
2. Implement a short-term solution
3. Implement a long-term solution, if possible

Troubleshooting Printing in General

Try the following:

* Check the physical aspects of the printer-cable, power, paper, toner etc
* Re-create the logical printer on the client
* Terminate and reshare the printer on the print server
* Try using a different application, user account, or computer to printer to the same printer
* Check for stalled print jobs
* Make sure the printer is online (a device setting)
* Reinstall the print driver
* Start and restart the spooler
* Check the free space on the drive where the spooler is directed; at least 75 MB is recommended
* Try using the Print Troubleshooter by selecting Start, Help, clicking on Troubleshooting, then clicking on the Print

This site was designed using Adobe Photoshop 7.0 and Dreamweaver 3 by Alex Trigueros for an ITT Tech Class on Microsoft Windows Operating Systems- Any Questions can be sent to GkDragon (AT) NetScape.Com