Changing network printer - leaving queue the same



I have a question regarding upgrading network printers.

I have a printer set up through a print queue on a Windows 2003
server. The printer is added on end users computers through directory

Now, I want to physically swap out this printer for another model
(keeping the same ip and hostname). Can I go into the print queue on
the server and simply change the driver to the new printer and the
queue will continue to work for the end users or will the printer need
to be re-added on the clients?

The idea is to not have to change the queue, but just the driver, so
that the printers will not have to be added with new names to all the
end user workstations, but I do not know if Windows downloads the
driver to the local PC when the printer is added or if it will work
this way.


Alan Morris [MSFT]

Depending on the current printer settings in the registry, it may work.

The main issue I have found has been swapping HP drivers but even HP only
supports adding a new printer rather than changing an existing (but I can
get this to work in most cases).

Since you do not want to have the users connect to a new printer name, using
the old printer name is a very common practice. You can accomplish this by
changing the driver on the current queue and the new driver will be
propagated to the connecting clients. If there is any devmode conversion
failures or mismatched file sets between to old and new driver you can still
generated the same end result by renaming the current printer and printer
share to "Printer2", then adding a new printer which uses the same port and
the new driver with the name of the old printer and previous shared name.
Configure the settings the same and copy paste the comments and location
fields from the previous queue.

Any client with a connection to the old, now "new" printer, will get the
updated driver.

Now delete the old, renamed printer.

Alan Morris
Windows Printing Team
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