Windows Server 2012 R2 Server Manager Crashes when clicking on Local Computer

Hello everyone!  I am writing today to raise awareness of an issue that we have come across recently.  I was working on a case with a customer where Server Manager in Windows Server 2012 would crash when he selected the Local Computer tab.  While debugging the issue, we found that Server Manager was crashing when trying to display a bitmap image for the Local Computer icon.  As we looked further into this, we found that when loading the bitmap image, it was trying to load a color profile in order to display the bitmap image properly.  If you have ever worked with color profiles, you will recall that they are stored on disk under the Spooler folder, “C:\windows\System32\spool\drivers\color” and you can view them by loading Color Management from Control Panel, or from the Start screen just type “Color Management” and it will come up.

Figure 1: Color Management loading color profiles properly:

image

We have discovered that if the Print Spooler Service is stopped or disabled in Windows Server 2012 R2, the color profiles will not load properly and Color Management will be blank.  If the color profiles are unable to load, then when Server Manager is trying to load them to display the bitmap icon, it returns a null and causes Server Manager to crash.  This issue only seems to occur in Windows Server 2012 R2 and not Windows Server 2012.

Microsoft is aware of the issue and we will keep you posted here.

*UPDATE 11/7/2014*

If you experience this issue, please download/install the following hotfix:

SQL Server Management Studio crashes when you try to start a New Query window in Windows 8.1
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2908806

*Do not worry about it mentioning SQL, as winspool.drv is being updated.

-Craig