Printers disappear after running the Windows Mobility printer installer
Last modified on 14 November 2020 09:05 PM
“Help! I’m a PaperCut admin, and I don’t see any new printers even after running the Windows Mobility printer installer successfully! What could cause this problem?”
Every once in awhile, we hear about users running the Windows Mobility printer installer but being unable to see any new printers afterward. 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:
1. Open the main BitDefender interface.
2. Go to the Protection window.
3. In the FIREWALL module, click the Settings button.
4. Go to the NETWORK ADAPTERS tab. Click the box corresponding to your network adapter and select Home/Office.
5. Go to the SETTINGS tab.
6. Click Edit stealth settings.
7. Set the switch corresponding to your network adapter to Off (grey switch). After that, click OK
8. Now go to the RULES tab and click Add rule.
9. In the upper part of the window, set the switch to YES, to Apply this rule to all applications.
10. Go to the Advanced tab.
11. Next to Custom Remote address, set the switch to On. Then, under it, type the IP of the device you want to connect to in its corresponding field.
12. Click OK.
The Mobility Printer installer creates print queue connections using the IPP protocol. You might see event codes 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…
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