Two Minute Drill: Enabling Print Queue Logging

Every so often, a customer needs to enable logging on their print queues to capture as much information about print activities on their server.  Configuring the logging options is actually quite an easy administrative task, but there are a couple of different ways to configure the options – through the GUI or through the registry.  First, the GUI method.  To configure the logging options, open the Printers applet on the server from within Control Panel.  Right click on a blank area of the window, select Server Properties and navigate to the Advanced tab.  On this tab, there are three checkboxes that you want to check:

  1. Log Spooler Error Events
  2. Log Spooler Warning Events
  3. Log Spooler Information Events

One caveat – if you are doing this on a Windows Server 2008 (or Windows Vista) machine, you do need to make sure that you use the “Run As Administrator” option to invoke Server Properties – otherwise you will not be able to modify the logging options as shown below:


Once you select the option using “Run As Administrator”, the check boxes are enabled.


Now let’s quickly cover how to modify the options via the registry.  The key you need to modify is HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Providers\Eventlog.  The same options above are available, but you modify the EventLog value to reflect the options.  Thus:

  1. Log Spooler Error Events – set the value to 1
  2. Log Spooler Warning Events – set the value to 2
  3. Log Spooler Information Events – set the value to 4

You can enable these in different combinations by adding the appropriate values and using the sum as the value for Eventlog.  Thus, to enable all three options – set the value to 7.

Once you have your options configured, you will start to see Event Log messages that look like the sample one below:

Product: Windows Operating System 
ID: 10 
Source: Microsoft-Windows-PrintSpooler 
Version: 6.0 
Message: Document %1, %2 owned by %3 was printed on %4 through port %5. Size in bytes: %6. Pages printed: %7

And with that, we are at the end of this post.  Until next time …

CC Hameed

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