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Extremely slow printing to networked printers

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      10th May 2006
I am having a hard time with a Windows 2000 Small Business Server.
Previously running OK, it has now decided to not like shared network
printers – local printers work fine and adding a new printer that’s
hosted elsewhere works OK, but when you try and print it takes ages
(tens of minutes) for the print jobs to get to the target printer. If
you try and look at the remote printer queues or printer properties, the
status shows ‘opening’ for perhaps 5-10 mins before going ‘ready’ and
then if you click on the printer name it’s perhaps another 5-10 mins
before the queue is shown. The two remote printers are hosted on PCs
running XP Pro.

Things tried so far:

Deleted and re-created printers.

Checked system logs – no directly-related errors (*but see below)

Tried creating a generic LaserJet 4 printer to confirm it’s not related
to the target printers (which are label printers)

Checked for Trojans and viruses – nothing showing (AVG, Trojanhunter,
safety.live.com, Sysinternals’ TCPView and ProcExp).

No firewalls running on any PC

Changed LAN card on server to another make/model

Reinstalled SP4

Checked for unwanted or suspicious Services

Uninstalled non-critical apps (Left only with MS Office and an in-house
management app that’s working fine on 15 other sites)

*The system logs showed that Modem Sharing was not starting properly,
but as it was not being used I deleted it from the network setup. I
suppose this may indicate a network-related issue but in every other
respect the system runs fine (speed, disk performance, network performance)

*The system logs also report that IPSec is not starting properly due to
unavailable system resources and this is the only anomaly I haven’t been
able to resolve. We are not using IPSec anyway but if anyone can shed
any light on whether this needs to be investigated further I would be
happy to oblige.

The server is a P4 2.8GHz with 768MB RAM and 21GiB free disk space.
Running SQL server and Terminal services for one other PC.

Any advice would be appreciated – I haven’t checked for a rootkit yet
but if I head in that direction I will probably just go for a complete

Any suggestions folks?



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