Windows 10: Old Serial Printer Not Working in Windows 10 (detailed info in thread)

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  1.    07 Jan 2016 #1

    Old Serial Printer Not Working in Windows 10 (detailed info in thread)


    Hi guys,

    One of my coworkers has a Datamax Allegro 2 printer that he needs to print special adhesive labels. It's a super old printer, which actually uses RS-232 (serial). I think it can also use parallel but that's not important as both show up as COM ports.

    I tried the 64-bit drivers we had initially, which were from 2013 and worked fine with Windows 8.1, which is what his computer had previously. I upgraded him to Windows 10 Enterprise (build 1611) last night. Anyway, the printer would install but then give an error any time I tried to do a test page. Eventually I got to the point where it would error when trying to re-add the printer too. I used the Seagull Driver Manager program to "remove all Seagull drivers" and after a few reboots, it complained about it being unable to delete some folder in C:/Windows/system32/spool/x64 (one that was last modified hours before I ever touched the printer!)

    I went on Seagull's website and saw that there was a newer driver from September 2015. Still only mentions Windows 8 but I figured it was worth a try. Windows 8 stuff is supposed to work with 10! So I tried that, reinstalled the printer using their tool. Same thing - it was added but always errors when trying to print. I also notice that for some odd reason, it keeps setting itself as the default printer whenever I open printing properties. Probably unrelated but still weird.

    So here's where I tried to do some digging. I noticed that in order to install the driver, I'd always have to put in the admin password (we are keeping UAC on and at defaults so employees have to ask one of us to install software for them). Usually you don't need admin permission to add or remove a printer...
    So I logged into the actual computer as the administrator. Tried it again. Same error.

    Went into event viewer. Enabled the print service logging (see here for what I did) and oddly, there were no errors! The only things I saw were "Spooling job #X" and then "Printing spooled job #X". That was it. Tried several times, and there were no errors in the log. The administrative event log would show the times I opened print properties where it would keep setting itself as default even though it was already default... still no errors. The only errors I encountered were when I'd try to delete the failed jobs too quickly and the spooler would log an error deleting file (since I beat the task to it)

    So at this point I'm completely stuck. I can't print test pages and I can't use the BarTender application to print labels either (generally I've found that if you can't print test pages, NOTHING will work)

    I've tried some suggestions - apparently build 1511 screwed something up with LPT ports and people reported having to modify a setting or two in device manager which made it work. Tried that, didn't work.

    Literally the only thing it does is say "Error - printing" and I don't see it recorded anywhere. Is there something else in Event Viewer I'm missing? If I try another test page right after the first I'll get "Could not print because the device is in an error state" but I assume that only refers to the "error - printing" as if I clear the queue out it goes back to the original message.

    I've tried using both the serial port on the back of the tower (it's a Dell Vostro 230 if that matters) and a serial-to-USB adapter which shows up as COM3. Both do the exact same thing. And I triple-checked that the settings match the printer (the baud rate etc)
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  2. Posts : 3,342
    EL Capitan
       08 Jan 2016 #2

    If it worked in 7 or 8. Just set it up as dual boot. Just remember to install the GWX Control Panel to stop the unit from upgrading to 10.

    Off Leases are so cheap now, he could probably use VNC or Teamviewer to connect to the machine that is running that dinosaur.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  3. Posts : 3,342
    EL Capitan
       08 Jan 2016 #3

    Have you tried the Nice Label driver's? DATAMAX printer drivers | NiceLabel

    Also have you tried contacting Datamax-O'neil?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    08 Jan 2016 #4

    drfsupercenter said: View Post
    I also notice that for some odd reason, it keeps setting itself as the default printer whenever I open printing properties. Probably unrelated but still weird.
    Don't know about your driver but Windows will set the last printer used as default unless you ask it not to

    Printer - Turn On or Off Let Windows 10 Manage Default Printer - Windows 10 Forums
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    08 Jan 2016 #5

    bro67 said: View Post
    Have you tried the Nice Label driver's? DATAMAX printer drivers | NiceLabel

    Also have you tried contacting Datamax-O'neil?
    I was going to contact Seagull as they're the ones who made that driver but for some reason their chat form wasn't working. I'll try the NiceLabel ones though, as supposedly they were tested on Windows 10.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    08 Jan 2016 #6

    lx07 said: View Post
    Don't know about your driver but Windows will set the last printer used as default unless you ask it not to

    Printer - Turn On or Off Let Windows 10 Manage Default Printer - Windows 10 Forums
    Thanks - that's an incredibly stupid option they added... would be nice if I could make a GPO to push this out to everybody. We already have a GPO that sets the default printer based on where they are in the building (it uses the one closest to them) while keeping the others available should they need color or something else. I suppose I can use a .reg file and push that out using a GPO though...
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 329
    Windows 10 Pro x86 and x64 dual boot
       08 Jan 2016 #7

    Have you tried disabling the com port and enabling, which is the fix for the parallel port. I was getting printer error with my Deskjet 710 until I did the fix via a script to disable and enable the port at logon using devcon.exe.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    08 Jan 2016 #8

    Hmm, OK so I tried the NiceLabel drivers, now I'm seeing an actual error in the event log instead of just the generic "job sent to printer" messages (odd that it doesn't show as type ERROR though)

    I saved the log to open it here and screenshot, see here:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here's the XML data

    Code:
    - <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">- <System>
      <Provider Name="Microsoft-Windows-PrintService" Guid="{747EF6FD-E535-4D16-B510-42C90F6873A1}" /> 
      <EventID>842</EventID> 
      <Version>0</Version> 
      <Level>4</Level> 
      <Task>50</Task> 
      <Opcode>11</Opcode> 
      <Keywords>0x4000000000040000</Keywords> 
      <TimeCreated SystemTime="2016-01-08T15:24:02.800366300Z" /> 
      <EventRecordID>140</EventRecordID> 
      <Correlation /> 
      <Execution ProcessID="2600" ThreadID="5316" /> 
      <Channel>Microsoft-Windows-PrintService/Operational</Channel> 
      <Computer>[redacted]</Computer> 
      <Security UserID="[redacted]" /> 
      </System>
    - <UserData>
    - <PrintDriverSandboxJobPrintProc xmlns="http://manifests.microsoft.com/win/2005/08/windows/printing/spooler/core/events">
      <JobId>2</JobId> 
      <Processor>winprint</Processor> 
      <Printer>Datamax Allegro 2</Printer> 
      <Driver>DATAMAX Allegro 2</Driver> 
      <IsolationMode>0</IsolationMode> 
      <ErrorCode>0x3f</ErrorCode> 
      </PrintDriverSandboxJobPrintProc>
      </UserData>
      </Event>
    So now I just need to figure out what 0x03F is.

    Edit: Googling around did absolutely nothing. It's all just spammy websites trying to get me to download software (which is obviously malware)

    Only thing I was able to learn is that 03F is a print spooler error... that doesn't really tell me much. Any idea if I can get more detailed errors from some other log in the event viewer? I figured the print service was the place to look.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    08 Jan 2016 #9

    banger said: View Post
    Have you tried disabling the com port and enabling, which is the fix for the parallel port. I was getting printer error with my Deskjet 710 until I did the fix via a script to disable and enable the port at logon using devcon.exe.
    OK, wow. That sounds so silly I was sure it wouldn't work but it totally did. Apparently it's a known bug in 1511, and I'm sure there's less than a fraction of a percent of people still using serial/parallel printers with Windows 10 anyway so I doubt Microsoft is going to fix it any time soon.

    Can you let me know how you did a script with devcon? I can look into that - it's working for now and I told the coworker to just let me know if it stops working again next time he reboots.

    A key thing here is that he isn't administrator, so any device manager stuff I've had to do myself and put in the admin password. If I make a script that runs on login I'd need to work as a standard user (or I suppose if I use RUNAS and store the password, that might work too...)
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  10. Posts : 3,342
    EL Capitan
       08 Jan 2016 #10

    I would just use a stand alone desktop, running Windows 7, install the GWX Control Panel, or isolate it from getting on the Internet, use it for just the printer.

    That is probably the best solution right now.

    Contact Nice about the error message. It could be third party security software or the spooler needs flushed.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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