Migration: Last step.. the printers

On November 24, 2009, in Migration, by

http://blogs.technet.com/sbs/archive/2009/02/13/how-to-add-32-bit-print-drivers-to-sbs-2008.aspx

Now if I were in charge of the SBS checklist, this wouldn’t be in the “finishing up the migration” or “post migration” tasks.  This, to me, is an key part of the migration itself. 

So you can make this easier in several ways.

Way 1:  Before you begin deploying SBS 2008 upgrade all workstations to 64bit as that way you don’t have to worry about 32bit versus 64 bit drivers.

Okay.

So that’s probably not feasible.  And it’s pre-black friday deals anyway so it might be a bit more expensive to buy all of your clients 64bit computers.  So let’s try another idea.

First off make your life easier from the get go and don’t physically attach printers to the server and instead have them as print server printers.  This assigns the printers via IP address making it easier to share out and move around.

Unfortunately when you deploy a 64 bit server, you may not have 32 bit printer drivers natively (1). But a couple of folks have come up with some good ideas.   You can stand up a temporary copy of a Windows Server 2008 and copy over the folder. 

Jake in the comments posted up the following helpful tip:

“When finding printer drivers I’ve found dumping out the built-in Microsoft drivers from a x86 2008 Server saves a lot of hassle.

On a x86 2008 server goto %systemroot%\system32\DriverStore\FileRepository and copy out all the folders that start with prn* and also copy out the ntprint directory. Then you can just use the 2 letters after prn to locate the manufacturer.

ie.

prnhp001.inf_ba023fd3 = HP

prnlx001.inf_54ff49cf = Lexmark

prnky001.inf_9592bf8d = Kyocera Mita

If your not sure just open the INF file and look under the [Manufacturer] section and it will tell you.”

Philip Elder has posted about the issue of using pushprinterconnections and how you can copy the 32bit version out and use that. 

http://blog.mpecsinc.ca/2009/01/sbs-2008-group-policy-and-32bit.html

http://blog.mpecsinc.ca/2008/11/x86-pushprinterconnectionsexe-must-for.html

(1) Okay so either I’m lucky… as all of my printer drivers that were x86 copied over and I merely had to redownload the x64 drivers.  I seriously doubt I’ll be adding Itanium workstations in the future so I skipped on that.

I just had to go into the printer console on the SBS 2008 and then click the check box for x64 and the Ricoh’s picked up the x64 printer driver as well as the x86 they already had.

You want to know the easiest printer …that was already ready to go?  The HPLaserjet 8000.  Proving that once again, sometimes those old, plain, no nonsense laserjets work on any platform, any driver, anything.  Heck it was the easiest to set up on the Mac as well.

The Ricoh’s needed a bit of printer drivers downloaded to the network and then they were ready to go again.

 

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