"Spooler subsystem app has encountered a problem and needs to close" error message

28. October 2010 21:13 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Nothing is more annoying than going to print something and instead getting an error message on your ink or toner cartridge printer. Sometimes, these error messages can be hard to get rid of, especially if you don't know what it means. One of these error messages is about the spooler subsystem app having a problem and it needs to close.

Spooler subsystem close error message

This message will usually appear whenever you go to stop or start your Print Spooler service. It can also happen when you go to click the 'Start' button and click on 'Printers and Faxes.' Then, when you are trying to print, you will get another error message that says the "Operation can't be completed."

One of the problems that might cause these error messages is because third-party services or printer drivers can affect the function of a printer that is newly installed. As an example, if you are adding a new printer but you have a custom print driver already installed in your computer, this can be a cause for the errors.

Below are some steps to try to fix the problem. These steps involve modifying the registry. It is very important that you read and follow directions carefully because changing something incorrectly can cause further problems. If you can, it is best to back up your computer's registry before trying to make any changes. If you happen to make a mistake, you can then restore your registry to before any changes were made.

Step 1: Restart Your Computer In The Safe Mode

  1. When you restart the computer, press the F8 key continuously when it is starting.
  2. Select the 'Safe Mode' option under 'Windows Advanced Options' and press ENTER.

Step 2: Delete The Driver Files And The Spool Printer
When you are in Safe Mode, delete the driver files and the spool printer. To accomplish this, first start the Microsoft Windows Explorer. Next, delete each and every file and folders for the following:

C:\Windows\ System32\ Spool\ Printers

C:\Windows\ System32\ Spool\ Drivers\ w32x86

Step 3: Editing Your Registry
Warning! Keep in mind that serious problems can occur when modifying the registry if it is done incorrectly when using the Registry Editor and any other methods. These problems could lead to the need for the operating system to be reinstalled on your computer. Below is a basic outline for editing your registry. Look up each step in detail before attempting. Once they are done, disconnect the printer from the computer and restart your computer before plugging your printer back in.

  1. Remove Windows NT Sub Keys
  2. Remove the Registry Entries For The Default Print Monitors

Step 4. Reinstall Your Printer
Lastly, you will want to install your printer. Install it according to the manufacturer's instructions. When finished, try to print a test page on your ink or laser toner printer to see if your printer is successfully working.

*Alternate Quick Fix For Most Printers*

  1. Click on 'Start' and then 'Printer and Faxes'
  2. Right click on your printer and select 'Properties'
  3. Click the 'Advanced Tab'
  4. Uncheck the 'Enable Advanced Printing Features'
  5. Click 'OK' and then retry printing a test page

Figuring out the right photo printer for you

31. August 2010 01:05 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Purchasing a quality photo printer may seem overwhelming. Finding a good photo printer is possible if you know what you need. Selecting the right printer is easier with knowledge of which features are necessary for good home printing.

Type of Printer:
Home photo printers should be able to print items that are not photos. A photo printer that is not dual functioned is useful for some, but the average person will be able to use a printer with more than one function. The most popular type of photo printers are inkjet and thermal dye printers. Thermal dye printers are a excellent option because picture quality is superior and water resistant. Inkjet ink cartridge printers produce a higher quality photo than a laser photo printer. Decide which type of printer will suit your individual needs before purchasing.

Quality of Resolution:
Higher resolution photo printers produce the best pictures with the highest cost. The higher the resolution the more costly the printer. Printing quality home photos can be accomplished with a lower resolution printer that does not cost a fortune. Average resolution photo printers work exceedingly well for home photos. Professionals will often utilize the highest resolution printers but they are not required for the home user.

Speed Of Printing:
Speed of a photo printer dictates price. The faster a photo prints the more expensive the printer is going to cost. The vast majority of photo printers offer the same quality with varying print speeds. Choosing a printer that is slower will offer good quality pictures with less expense. Speed may seem like a useful feature however, the average home user does not print enough to warrant the extra expense.

Ink and Paper Costs:
Expensive printers equal expensive ink and photo paper. However, choosing compatible ink or paper will give you equivalent print quality at a fraction of the price. Research ink and photo paper costs before purchasing a printer and calculate the cost on a per-page basis (cost of cartridge divided by page yield of cartridge). High cost ink and paper will significantly drive up usage expenses over time. Good quality printers are available with reasonable ink and paper costs.  HP ink is traditionally the most expensive, but compatible ink is widely available making it some of the most affordable versus the competition.

Deciding which feature are needed are the best way to purchase a photo printer. Different home users will require different features with their photo printer. Know what you need and do diligent research before purchasing any printer. Proper research will provide the photo printer buyer, the ability to purchase a quality inexpensive printer that is just right for them.

Why you should recycle your old toner cartridges

10. July 2010 20:58 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (1)

In today’s green, eco-friendly society, recycling is gaining popularity. We recycle soda cans, bottles, paper, batteries and even cell phones. An item often overlooked is the toner cartridge in our home and office printers. The question then becomes “why should we recycle our toner cartridges?”  If you’re on the fence with regards to taking the time to recycle your toner cartridges, here are the top 2 reasons to do so!

Save space in the landfill and save the environment
Cartridge recyclingWe tend to not give much consideration to where our trash ends up once it leaves the curb. With just over a dozen toner cartridges being thrown away every second there are millions upon millions of laser toner and ink cartridges that find a home in US landfills each year. The plastic from these cartridges take 1000 years to decompose. In addition, the left over ink inside of your cartridge can seep out, polluting the environment. The ink is often toxic to plant and animal life in the area. By purchasing recycled cartridges we are conserving the natural resources used to make new cartridges as well as the energy used to create them.

It’s Easy
We strongly encourage you to drop empty ink and toner cartridges off at the major office supply stores. The major office supply stores offer cartridge recycle bins. Simply save your cartridges and take them to the store with you the next time you head out.

Approximately 70% of toner cartridges used in homes and businesses are thrown away rather than recycled. If all of these cartridges were laid end-to-end, they would circle the planet three times over. Knowing these facts and how easy it is to recycle toner cartridges, the question quickly changes to ‘why shouldn’t I recycle my used cartridges?’

How to clear your printer memory

27. June 2010 12:24 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

If you have a printer, like the HP CP2025 toner printer, that is giving strange error messages or not working correctly, it could be time to clear your printer memory. Keeping your printer maintained will result in your printer working better and lasting a lot longer. In many cases, it is necessary to reset the memory to get it working again.

HP CP2025 printer memoryMany times, just merely turning the power on an off on the printer is not enough to get your problems solved. Most people think that just removing or reinstalling the toner will work, but in some situations more is needed. When you turn off the printer, there is still electricity that is going to it through the cord connected to the wall outlet. Because of this, the printer can not fully reset its memory. Just turning off the power will have little to no impact on fixing your printer.

The best way to reset a printer is by turning it off and then unplugging it from the wall's outlet or from the back of your printer. You must keep it unplugged for at least 3-5 minutes so that there will be no residual energy left in the printer. This ensures that the printer will have to completely reboot itself.

Following this procedure is best when changing toner cartridges as well. Many printers will not recognize a new toner cartridge until there is no power going to the printer before it is turned back on. Always remove the printer's power source before changing the toner for it to work properly when the printer is turned back on.

This simple procedure might seem too good to be true, but resetting and clearing your printer's memory can help solve and eliminate many annoying error messages. Also, it is great for helping your printer to recognize a new cartridge that has been installed.

Why you should perform a HP fax test

10. May 2010 11:21 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

HPIf you have recently set up an HP fax machine, you should make sure to perform a fax test. This should be done to make sure the fax machine is actually operating properly and has the ability to send and receive faxes. If you do not perform a fax test, your fax machine may fail to operate when you do need it to communicate with clients or business partners.

In the past, testing a fax machine was a very elaborate, time consuming, and frustrating process. Thankfully, manufacturers have since introduced ways to test fax machines quickly and efficiently using fax test programs.  Running the test is relatively easy and completing the test should only take about ten minutes. Once it’s finished, a person can rest assured that their fax machine will work properly when needed.

  1. Make sure the machine has power.
  2. Make sure paper is in the paper tray.
  3. Switch the machine on.
  4. For the this step, a fax cover sheet must be filled out. This should include writing both the sender’s name as well as the fax number of the fax machine into the open spaces for this information on the cover sheet’s sender column.  In the recipient area, you should write “HP fax test.” This will let the recipient know you are sending a fax test. The fax will be sent to a certain number that Hewlett-Packard set aside to allow new fax machine owners to test their machines. The number the fax should be sent to is 1-888-473-2963.  There will be a space that asks for this number on the cover sheet.  There will also be another space that asks for the number of pages, write “2” in this space.
  5. Once you have finished the cover sheet, you need to place it inside your machine. Whether it should be placed face down or face up depends on the model of your HP fax machine. If you’re not sure, look over the instructions or manual that came with the machine. Along with the cover letter, include one blank piece of paper.
  6. Now, you send the fax. To send the fax, type in the HP fax test number and press the send button. The send button will sometimes be labeled “Start” depending on your model.
  7. You now have to wait for a fax back from the HP fax test number. This process will not be instantaneous. However, it should only take between five to eight minutes to get a response. When the fax test number is reached by your fax, HP will produce a return fax to let you know that your fax machine is operating properly. 

If you do not receive a return fax after 12 minutes, you should attempt to send a second fax. If the second fax does not work, you will need to troubleshoot what is causing your connection problems which is typically the telephone line.  If you have connected the fax machine to a voice over IP line (VOIP), this may be the cause.  Fax machines typically do not work well over VOIP lines.

How to replace your Brother toner cartridge and drum

6. April 2010 09:10 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

In laser printers, the drum and toner cartridge work together when printing. The toner, similar to ink, is held in the toner cartridge. When something is printed, the drum transfers that toner to the paper.  In many models, like the Brother HL-2140 toner printer, these are sold and installed as a single unit. However, this often causes both to be replaced when usually only the toner is used completely. Most Brother printers have these components separately installed in one unit in the printer, so that only the empty one needs to be replaced.

Brother HL-2140 toner printerHere are the steps to replacing either the drum or toner cartridge on a Brother printer.

  1. Turn off the printer
  2. Set some scrap paper near the printer. Toner may leak from the toner. This is to protect anything that leaking toner might stain.
  3. Open the front cover.
  4. Firmly pull the drum and cartridge unit from the printer. Be careful to watch for leaking toner that might drip. Do not touch the electrode, otherwise static electricity may cause damage.
  5. Separate the drum and the toner cartridge by pressing the green lever down.
  6. Set the parts on the paper.
  7. If replacing a used drum, then place the toner in a new drum. If replacing an empty toner cartridge, then snap a new cartridge to the drum.
  8. Lock the drum and toner together. If replaced properly, it can be heard locking into place and the green lever should lift automatically.
  9. Lock the drum and cartridge into the printer.
  10. Turn on the printer.
  11. Close the front cover.

The printer should automatically detect the new laser toner cartridge or drum. It is ready to print if the LED indicator goes off.

How Xerox solid ink works?

23. March 2010 10:48 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Also referred to as phase-change printers, Xerox solid ink printers are exceptional because it’s carbon footprint is less and the technology is unique to Xerox.  Solid ink technology was first developed by Tektronix. Tektronix was then bought out by Xerox in 2000. A Xerox Phaser ink printer is based upon a simple 3 step process:

  1. A maintenance roller putting oil on the print drum Xerox Phaser ink sticks
  2. A printhead shifting ink to the print drum via 1,236 nozzles jetting more than 30 million ink drops per second.  A printhead is more or less the central module of any inkjet printer. What it does is it transports ink to the paper by means of the nozzles. Also known as jets, the nozzles are connected to the printhead. The resolve of the nozzle is to act as a conduit for the ink as it goes from the ink chamber to the paper. One printhead may well effortlessly encompass hundreds of nozzles. Each of these nozzles is a lot slighter than one hair on your head.
  3. A print drum transmits the image to the paper.

Below are the detailed steps in the printing process:

  1. The maintenance roller spreads on a coat of silicone oil to the warmed drum for consistent ink emission.
  2. The printhead smears on all of the shades at the same time onto the revolving drum.
  3. A sheet of paper is then swiftly fed flanked by both the revolving drum and a transfix roller, thus conveying the ink to the paper.
  4. The ink then infiltrates and congeals instantaneously with the paper. This reduces the risk for smearing snags. The ink unites with the paper using both hotness and compression.
  5. If the printer is fixed to print on both sides, the paper is fed back into the paper track. The paper then takes one more go in the printer and gets printed on the reverse side.

As with all other printer equipment, there are pros and cons that are existent and solid ink is no exemption. Below are the pros and cons of using a solid ink printer as opposed to a laser toner printer.


  • Eco-friendliness by using a solid ink stick
  • Fewer parts causing it to lower the repairs cost
  • It is capable of handling more types of paper
  • Exceptional print eminence with brilliant colors
  • Swift printing (once initial warm-up is done and melting of the ink sticks)
  • Easy to use


  • Long warm up time (can take up to 5 minutes)
  • Printheads may become congested
  • Printer cannot be relocated without the cooling program running
  • Higher power spending

Despite the cons of the solid ink printer, if taken care of properly it will provide you with more vibrant pictures and years of usage while helping preserve the environment with a smaller carbon footprint.

How to print from your Amazon Kindle

10. February 2010 19:40 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Amazon Kindle 4More books are purchased for Amazon’s Kindle e-reader than are purchased in print format, making Kindle one of the most successful product inventions ever. With the ability to take hundreds of books anywhere on a single device, it is easy to see why Kindle is so popular. There are times, however, when having a paper copy of something on the Kindle makes more sense, creating the need to print from your Amazon Kindle.

Why Print?
When you need something you read on Kindle for quick reference, you might want to print it to your laser toner printer. Say you have purchased a cookbook and are ready to use a recipe. Having the printed recipe in front of you will be much easier to use than reading it on Kindle, and you do not have to worry about stains or splatters. With so many reference and how-to books available, you may often find yourself referring to shopping lists, step-by-step instructions, or photos. A book of poetry may have just the inspirational piece you need to see tacked up on the refrigerator every day. Knowing how to print from your Amazon Kindle can help expand its usefulness.

How Do I Print?
Amazon Kindle 4 connectorsYou can print anything you see on your Kindle screen, from small bits of text to entire pages and photos, by taking a screenshot. Screenshots are automatically saved to the Documents folder of your Kindle and can then be transferred to your computer to be printed. Personal notes and clippings are saved to Documents as well. Follow these step-by-step instructions to learn how to print from your Amazon Kindle.

To Print From Screenshots

  1. Take a screenshot of the page by pressing Alt+Shift+G. This creates a .gif file that is saved to your Documents folder on the Kindle.
  2. Connect your Kindle to your computer via the USB cable that came with your Kindle. Your computer should recognize it as a mass storage device and allow you to browse the contents by selecting “Open folder to view files using Windows Explorer.”
  3. Navigate to the Documents folder on your Kindle, open the file you wish to print and choose Print from the File menu. Your computer may automatically import the photos, which will then be saved in the My Pictures folder of your hard drive.

To Print Clippings and Notes

  1. Connect your Kindle to your PC using the USB cable and select “Open folder to view files using Windows Explorer.”
  2. Navigate to Documents folder on your Kindle and open the file “My Clippings.txt”, then select Print from the File menu. If you want to print specific clippings, highlight them with your mouse and choose “Selection” from the Print dialog box.

The ability to print from your Kindle increases the utility of a device that is already so useful. Recipes, notes, newspaper articles, clippings and more can be archived on paper for later reference so you will always have important information within easy reach.

How to replace the drums in your Okidata printer

25. January 2010 12:31 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Laser printers use a combination of a drum and a toner cartridge. The cartridge contains the toner, the powdery substance and the drum transfers the toner onto the paper.  In many models, like the Oki C3200 toner printer, these are sold and installed as a single unit. However, this often causes both to be replaced when only one is empty. Okidata printers are designed so that the toner and drum are separate units, allowing them to be individually changed when needed.

In Okidata printers the drum and toner cartridge snap together to form a single unit. When one is empty, the printer will be unable to print. However, only one needs to be replaced. This involves unsnapping the drum from the toner cartridge. Snap together the new one and replace it in the printer. The following is a step-by-step guide on how to replace the drums in Okidata printers.

  1. Power off the printer.
  2. Place a piece of paper near the printer. This is to protect any surface that excess toner might leak on to.
  3. Unlock and remove the drum from the printer. Be careful to watch for excess toner that could spill onto something.
  4. Unlock the toner cartridge from the drum.
  5. Set the toner cartridge on the paper.
  6. Snap a new drum onto the toner, as toner may still be left in the cartridge.
  7. Lock the drum and toner into the printer.
  8. Turn on the printer.

After this, the printer should be ready to print. It should recognize the new drum and remaining Oki toner.  Replacing the drum on an Okidata printer may appear to be a hassle and difficult. However, it is worth learning how to do.  By continuing to use the toner cartridge and only replacing the drum, significant savings can be realized.

List of common Dell printer error codes

9. November 2009 20:02 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags: ,   //   Comments (2)

Dell printers are made to share several common features. Most current printers contain a flat panel display to show printer status as well as indicating possible problems. All Dell printers share a feature that helps to decipher what is causing various problems, to better assist in fixing them.

All Dell printers, like the Dell 1110 toner printer, are created to display error codes, either on the display or on a computer screen. However, the error codes are usually issues which can be quickly resolved with a little knowledge of the causes. Most current printers have software installed that allows maintenance and checking error codes, simply by clicking an icon. Below are several common errors as well as tips on how to remedy each error.

Replace Toner - Dell printers will display an error stating to “replace toner,” in addition to various numbers that signify the color of the ink or Dell toner needing replacing and the general error state of the printer. This error can be cleared by replacing the cartridge that the printer is referring to in the error code.

Paper Jam Tray 1 and Tray 2 error codes - The paper jam error is caused by paper that is physically jammed within the printers various parts. Clearing this code is accomplished by physically opening the printer’s doors and gently removing any paper that is stuck.

Print Head Error - Dell printers will usually trigger a print head error when there is a problem with blockage. This error is not applicable to laser toner printer. Ink is the biggest cause of blockage on the printer’s head, which will trigger this error. A printer’s head needs to stay clean in order for the ink to pass through efficiently, and for more accurate text and images when printing. By going into the printing utilities software on your computer, you can check to see what is causing the print error. Most printers allow head-cleaning by clicking an option within the utility. If the print head isn’t blocked, there is a possibility it will need replacing.

Printing Text in Red - Print heads that aren’t thoroughly cleaned may cause red text to be printed. Removing the cartridge and cleaning the heads may help solve this problem and return the normal colors when printing.

Error code 016-370 - This error message shows on the Dell LCD panel and requires the powering down the printer in order to clear it. After waiting for ten seconds with the printer off, turn it back on and the code should be cleared. If that method isn’t effective the NVRAM may need to be reset on the printer.

Error code 004-332 - This code usually indicates an error condition that requires restarting the printer. Additionally, this code could be cause by toner cartridges that haven’t been positioned correctly in the printer. Removing the toner cartridges and reinserting them will often clear this error code automatically.

Error code: 009-360 - The 009-360 error is an indication that a toner cartridge CRUM communication failure has been detected by the printer. This can be remedied by first powering down the printer and waiting ten seconds before powering it on. Next, power on the printer and see if the message has been cleared.  If the error is still present, replace the toner cartridge.

If your error is not listed above, an excellent resource to find any error code for all Dell printers is the Dell printer support site.  The Dell printer support site provides drivers, manuals and detailed instructions on how to resolve a variety of issues.

Month List