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Article ID: 197046 - Last Review: October 26, 2007 - Revision: 2.2

This article was previously published under Q197046

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SUMMARY

Microsoft Cluster Server has the ability to create and host print server functionality. The following article documents the procedure for correctly setting up a print spooler on a cluster.

MORE INFORMATION

Install the TCP/IP Printing Service

To run a print spooler on the Cluster Server computer, a printer port monitor must be established from each node of the Cluster server to the remote printer or remote print server. Not all port monitors are cluster server capable. Using a third-party port monitor is not supported by Microsoft.

The Line Printer Remote (LPR) port monitor is a supported port monitor and is installed with the Microsoft TCP/IP printing service.

For example: A connection can be established to a TCP/IP Line Printer Daemon (LPD) or another computer running Microsoft Windows NT Server and the Microsoft TCP/IP printing service. A printer port defined through a UNC connection such as \\Prn_server1\Printer1 may also be used as long as the share allows null sessions.

CAUTION: Creating ports and installing printer drivers must be performed on both nodes. If these steps are performed on only one node, the printer group starts on the other node but jobs to the printer accumulate in the queue. Clients are able to send print jobs to the Cluster server, but the server does not have the appropriate resources on the failover node to process the job out of the logically defined printer. Also, for failover of the printer to work, it is not possible to use a physical local port, such as a LPT1, because if the node does not work, the connection to that particular node's LPT1 port would also be lost.

To install the TCP/IP printing service, follow the instructions as documented in the "To Install LPR Printing" section of the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
195643  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/195643/EN-US/ ) How to Configure Windows NT for LPR Printing
NOTE: Please make sure that after you install any service from the original Windows NT media (and prior to restarting), you reapply the latest service pack.

If the remote port created is to connect to another Windows NT Print Server through a UNC, follow the instructions in the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
121853  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/121853/EN-US/ ) Downlevel Print Jobs Not Redirected Correctly

Create a Group for the Print Spooler

To set up the Spooler service on a Cluster server, the appropriate resources need to be made available to the Spooler service. To accomplish this, group the resources in the Cluster Administrator program. This group is used to contain all of the resources necessary to create a printer share.
  1. Start the Cluster Administrator program, and create a group for the spooler. To create this group, right-click in the left pane of the File New Group section.
  2. Type in the name and description of the group, and then click Next.
  3. Add the nodes that are the preferred owners, and then click Finish.
  4. Add an Internet Protocol (IP) address for the group. An IP address resource must be added to the group because the network name resource that is created next depends on an IP address resource. If the nodes of the cluster have the TCP/IP Print Service installed and running, clients with the LPR utility can also use this IP address. These client can use this address when they try to gain access to the printer.

    1. Select the Groups folder, and find the group created above.
    2. Right-click the group, click New, and then click Resource.
    3. Type a name for the resource, select IP Address as the resource type, and then click Next.
    4. Add the nodes that will be the possible owners, and then click Next.
    5. Click Next again, as no resources need to brought online before the IP address starts.
    6. Type the IP address and subnet mask of the connection that is available to users. Also, specify the network to use, and then click Finish.
  5. Add a network name resource to the group. This is the name of the print server that is used by clients when connecting to the printer share.

    1. Select the Groups folder, and find the group created above.
    2. Right-click the group, click New, and then click Resource.
    3. Type a name for the resource, select Network Name as the resource type, and then click Next.
    4. Add the nodes that will be the possible owners, and then click Next.
    5. Add the IP Address resource as a resource dependency, and then click Next.
    6. Add the Spooler server name. That is, the server that is used by clients to access the spooled printers.
  6. Add a disk resource to the group. The disk resource is where the Spooler files for the printer shares are stored.

    1. Select the Groups folder, and then find the group created above.
    2. Right-click the group, click New, and then click Resource.
    3. Type a name for the resource, click Physical Disk as the resource type, and then click Next.
    4. Add the nodes that will be the possible owners, and then click Next.
    5. Click Next again, as no resources need to brought online before the Physical Disk resource starts.
    6. Select the Physical Disk, and then click Finish.
  7. Add a print spooler resource in the group. This is the spooler for any printer shares. The folder specified must be reside on the disk specified in the previous step.

    1. Select the Groups folder, and then find the group created above.
    2. Right-click the group, click New, and then click Resource.
    3. Type a name for the resource, click Print Spooler as the resource type, and then click Next.
    4. Add the nodes that will be the possible owners, and then click Next.
    5. Add the Physical Disk created above as a resource dependency, and then click Next.
    6. Add the Network Name created in step 5 above as a resource dependency, and then click Next.
    7. Type the path and folder name for the spooler files location. This is where the SHD and SPL files are created when the Spooler service runs.

      For example: If the physical disk resource created in step 6 above was drive E, you may want to type in a spool folder called Spool such that the entry would look like E:\Spool. Unless necessary, leave the Job completion timeout as 160 seconds.

Create and Install the Necessary Printer Ports

NOTE: Perform this procedure on both nodes of the cluster. After creating the group and resources that are required to make the cluster a print server, it is then necessary to perform the following steps on both nodes of the cluster. The following steps set up LPR ports as the port monitor. This is the most common and efficient way of setting up a Windows NT 4.0 print server.

NOTE: Some instructions differ from those in Microsoft Knowledge Base article Q195643 listed above because the following setup example uses the Ports tab to set up the ports independent of adding the printer.
  1. Create the ports for the printers. To create LPR ports, go to the printer folder of each node, and then click Server Properties from the File menu.

    1. Click the Ports tab, and then click Add Port.
    2. Select LPR port by double-clicking the entry or highlighting the entry, and then clicking the New Port button.
    3. Type in the appropriate information about the port.
    NOTE: By default, TCP/IP printing only uses 11 TCP/IP ports. If your LPD device can handle receiving print jobs over ports 1024+, please see the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:
    141708  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/141708/EN-US/ ) Printing to LPD Printer Is Slow or Fails with Windows NT

    179156  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/179156/EN-US/ ) Updated TCP/IP Printing Options for Windows NT 4.0 SP3 and Later
    The settings in the above articles must be applied consistently to all nodes of the cluster to avoid inconsistent behavior when moving the Spooler resource to another node. Also, note that to allow the changes to take effect, the Spooler service has to be restarted. If the Microsoft TCP/IP printing service is also running, that service needs to be stopped before stopping the Spooler service on the node. For additional information about TCP/IP Printing, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    189224  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/189224/EN-US/ ) TCP/IP Printing Service Hangs If Started Before Spooler Service
    To set the LPR ports to use ports greater than 1024:
    • Move the spooler group temporarily to the other node.
    • Stop the spooler service on the node.
    • Make the appropriate registry entry per the above articles.
    • Restart the spooler service.
    • Move the spooler group back to the node you just made changes on.
  2. Install the printer drivers for the printer.

    This step is also not performed in the Cluster Administrator program. Instead, this is performed using the Add Printer Wizard, which is available in the Printers folder (on the Start menu, point tor Settings, and then click Printers). This is the same tool and process used to create the print server on a computer not using Cluster Server.

    NOTE: The printer created on each node need only be created to install the printer driver to that node.
    For example, a clustered Spooler was set up to have 50 logical printers on it all using the same printer driver (for example, HP LaserJet 4). In that case, the Cluster nodes need only have the HP LaserJet 4 driver on them.
    1. Click Start, point to Settings, click Control Panel, double-click Printers, and then click Add Printer.
    2. When you are prompted to select where the printer is managed from, select My Computer, and then click Next.
    3. Select a port.
    4. Select a printer driver and click next.
    5. Click the sharing radio button, and also select the operating systems for which you want to share a driver for. For additional information about installing cross-platform drivers on both nodes, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      154291  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/154291/EN-US/ ) Installing Cross Platform Print Drivers in Windows NT 4.0
      You only need to perform this procedure once on each node for each printer model.
    6. Insert the appropriate media or type the location of the correct printer drivers when prompted.
    7. Select whether or not you would like to print a test page, and then click Next.

Add a Printer to the Cluster Spooler

To create a printer share on a local cluster node (start with the one that currently owns the printer cluster resources (Network Name, IP Address, Print Spooler, Physical Disk. It automatically shows up on the other since it is a cluster registry key entry):
  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. In the Open box, type the network name that was added to the printer group on the cluster. For example, \\Prn_server.
  3. A Windows Explorer window is displayed listing any shares and the Printers folders. Double-click the Printers folder.
  4. To add the printer shares, in the Printers folder, double-click the Add Printer Wizard.

    NOTE: The options available in the Add Printer Wizard are limited:

    • In the Add Printer Wizard dialog box, the only option is to add a printer to the remote print server.
    • In the Add Printer Wizard dialog box, the Add Port and Configure Port buttons are unavailable.

REFERENCES

For additional information on resources and groups, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
169017  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/169017/EN-US/ ) Information on Groups and Resources Using Cluster Server

APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Enterprise Edition
  • Microsoft Cluster Server 1.1
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