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Completely remove all printer drivers Win XP and 7

Check in Control Panel | Add/Remove Programs; if there is an entry relating to one of the printers, select it, then click Change/Remove. Follow the dialog and "uninstall all" or "remove all" as appropriate. Some "printer software" have programs that show up here and it will be a good idea to remove those before going any further.

If the Print Spooler service is operational:

  • Open the Printers (Printers and Faxes on Windows XP) folder
  • delete all of the printers
  • click File, Server Properties
  • select the Drivers tab
  • for each entry:
    • select the entry
    • click Remove
  • open regedit (e.g. click Start, key regedit and press Enter)
  • navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Environments\Windows NT x86\Drivers under this key, there will be the keys Version-2 and Version-3 (one or the other of these may be absent - not a problem) the sub-keys under these contain the printer driver configuration information delete all the sub-keys inside Version-2 and Version-3, but not these keys themselves
  • open a Command Prompt window
  • key the commands
    net stop spooler
    net start spooler
  • open Windows Explorer & navigate to %systemroot%\system32\spool\printers\ and delete any files there. By default, this is where the print spooler stores print files.
  • navigate to %systemroot%\system32\spool\drivers\w32x86 (%systemroot% is usually Windows, but it might be winnt or something else; this is set when the OS is installed).
  • inside w32x86, there will be folders with the names 2 and 3 (one or more of these may be absent - not a problem)
    delete all of the files and sub-folders in each of the 2 and 3 folders, but not the folders themselves
    inside w32x86, there may be other folders with names starting with "hewlett_packard", "hphp" or something else; delete these folders also
  • restart the print spooler (see steps 8 and 9 above).

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