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How to fix printer has experienced a configuration problem on Windows 10

Printers are normally plug & play devices. Years ago, every printer came with its own installation disk with drivers meant for a particular model or a series of printers. Since then, generic drivers have been developed for printers allowing most devices to work with the drivers that Windows 10 installs.

printer has experienced a configuration problem

Fix printer has experienced a configuration problem

Printers no longer require extensive set up. A user must ensure that there are no hardware problems with the printer i.e., paper is loaded, no doors are open, paper isn’t jammed etc., but the software is normally set up by Windows 10 and the app that’s being used for printing.

If you’re trying to print something and you see the ‘printer has experienced a configuration problem’ error, make sure that;

  • No paper is stuck in the printer
  • You’ve power cycled the printer at least once
  • The cable connecting the printer is not damaged
  • Try using a different port on your computer to connect the printer
  • Disconnect other peripheral devices and then try printing
  • Try printing from different apps

Try the fixes below to resolve the error.

1. Run printer troubleshooter

Windows 10 has a built-in troubleshooter for printers and it is one of the first tools you should use to resolve configuration problems with a printer.

  1. Open the Settings app with the Win+I keyboard shortcut.
  2. To to Update & Security.
  3. Select the Troubleshoot tab.
  4. Click Additional troubleshooters.
  5. Run the printer troubleshooter.
  6. Apply all fixes that it recommends.

2. Update printer drivers

Windows 10 installs drivers for the printer automatically but it doesn’t often update them. Check for updates and install the ones that are available.

  1. Open Device Manager.
  2. Expand Print queue.
  3. Right-click the printer and select Update driver.
  4. Search online for drivers and install the ones that are available.

3. Install proprietary printer software

Printers normally run with generic drivers but, many still have proprietary printer software. Check if there is one available for the printer model you’re using and install it.

4. Restart Print Spooler service

Print Spooler is an essential service that runs when you print something. This service can often run into problems for the simplest things e.g., if you had a paper jam and you cleared it, the spooler service will not run correctly and allow you to print unless you restart it.

  1. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  2. In the run box, enter services.msc and tap the Enter key.
  3. Right-click the Print Spooler service and select Properties.
  4. Click the Stop button.
  5. Open File Explorer and paste this %WINDIR%\system32\spool\printers in the location bar. Tap Enter.
  6. Delete everything in the Printer folder (you may need admin rights for this).
  7. Return to the Services app and right-click Print Spooler.
  8. Select Properties.
  9. Click Start.
  10. Try printing.

5. Share the printer

This is an odd fix but it works for many users, especially those using a network printer. 

  1. Open Control Panel.
  2. Go to Hardware and sound.
  3. Click Devices and printers.
  4. Right-click the printer and select Properties from the context menu.
  5. Go to the Sharing tab.
  6. Click Share this printer.
  7. Apply the change and try printing.

Conclusion

Setting up and printing from a desktop printer has become much easier over the years. Problems with printers normally have to do with hardware but configuration problems will pop up now and then. This should help fix them. 

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