Microsoft small business knowledge base

Article ID: 298370 - Last Review: December 1, 2007 - Revision: 5.4

This article was previously published under Q298370


Whenever you restart your computer, the Found New Hardware Wizard may detect your previously installed printer, even though it is not a newly installed printer.


This problem may occur if one of the following conditions is true:
  • The printer driver does not use Plug and Play for its installation.
  • The following registry key has become damaged:


To work around this problem, complete all the steps in the New Hardware Wizard, even though the wizard cannot detect a new printer.


Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756  ( ) How to back up and restore the registry in Windows

To resolve this problem, contact the manufacturer of your printer for an updated driver or specific instructions about how to complete the Found New Hardware Wizard for your particular printer.

For example, visit the following HP Web site for information about HP printers: (
To use Registry Editor to remove the damaged registry key, follow these steps:
  1. Log on to your computer by using an administrator account.
  2. Click Start, and then click Run.
  3. In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK.
  4. Locate and click the following registry key:
  5. Right-click the registry key, and then click Delete.
  6. Under Confirm Key Delete, click Yes.
  7. Close Registry Editor, and then restart your computer.
When Windows XP restarts, it will detect the printer and install support for it. After the printer is installed, it will no longer be detected each time you start Windows XP.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a bug in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.


The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding the performance or reliability of these products.

Microsoft provides third-party contact information to help you find technical support. This contact information may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this third-party contact information.

  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition
kbenv kbhardware kbprb KB298370
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