In this lesson you will learn about some common printing problems and how to troubleshoot them. This chapter also introduces you to the built-in Printer Troubleshooter and some of the other troubleshooting features included in Windows XP Professional.
When you detect a printing problem, always verify that the printer is plugged in, turned on, and connected to the print server. For a network interface print device, verify that there is a network connection between the printer and the print server.
To determine the cause of a problem, first try printing from a different program to verify that the problem is with the printer and not with the program. If the problem is with the printer, ask the following questions:
There are some printing problems that are common to most network printing environments. Table 7.6 describes some of these common printing problems, as well as some possible causes and solutions.
Table 7.6 Common Printing Problems, Causes, and Solutions
A user receives an Access Denied message when trying to configure a printer from an application (for example, earlier versions of Microsoft Excel).
The user does not have the appropriate permission to change printer configurations.
Change the user's permission or configure the printer for the user.
The document does not print completely or comes out garbled.
The printer driver is incorrect.
Install the correct printer driver.
The hard disk starts thrashing and the document does not reach the print server.
There is insufficient hard disk space for spooling.
Create more free space on the hard disk.
Windows XP Professional has a built-in troubleshooter to help you resolve your printing problems. For example, in the Printers And Faxes window, you can click Troubleshoot Printing (see Figure 7.10).
Figure 7.10 Printers And Faxes window built-in troubleshooter
When you click Troubleshoot Printing, Windows XP Professional presents you with a series of potential printing problems. After you make a selection from the list of potential problems and click Next, the troubleshooter takes you through a series of suggestions and questions to help you resolve the problem. You can also perform a search to help resolve your problem or you can select the I Want The Troubleshooter To Investigate Settings On This Computer option.
If you experience a problem with your computer, Windows XP Professional provides a number of ways to help you resolve your problem. On the Start menu you can click Help And Support. If it is a printing problem, click Printing And Faxing (see Figure 7.11).
Figure 7.11 The Fixing A Printer Problem option in the Help And Support Center window
The Help and Support Center also allows you to use Remote Assistance to invite another person to help over the Internet. The expert can accept this invitation, chat with you, and view your desktop. He or she can also transfer any files required to fix the issue or perform any complex procedures that need to be performed. You can also visit the Windows XP newsgroups or try Microsoft Assisted Support.
For more information about these support features, see Chapter 1, "Introduction to Windows XP Professional."
The following questions will help you determine whether you have learned enough to move on to the next lesson. If you have difficulty answering these questions, review the material in this lesson before beginning the next chapter. The answers for these questions are in Appendix A, "Questions and Answers."