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What Is Printer Pooling? How Can I Configure It?

This Tutorial addresses:
  • Configuration
  • Operating Systems
  • Printers
Printer pooling is a feature present in almost all latest versions of Microsoft Windows operating systems, and allows the printer administrators to create a single pool of multiple printers in order to reduce the workload from one printing device.

When a printer pool is created, all the printing tasks are equally distributed among all the participating printers on round-robin basis. For example, if there are three printers configured to form a printer pool, the first printing task will be sent to the first printer, the second task will be sent to the second printer, the third printing task will be sent to the third printer, and the fourth printing task will be sent to the first printer again, and so on.

Important

In order to add the printers to form a printing pool, it is important that all the participating printers must be from the same manufacturer and of the same model. In case the manufacturers or model of the printers differ, the printer pool cannot be created.

Also, it is important to place all the participating printers in a printer pool at a single location in order to avoid the confusion that may take place if the printers are kept at different locations. Since the users have no means of knowing as which printer received the print task, and any of the participating printing device can get the printout, if the printers are placed at different locations, the users would have to wander around in the entire premises in order to find their printouts.

In this tutorial, you will learn how you can create a printer pool on a Windows 7 operating system.

Here is what you need to do:

  1. Using the administrator account, log on to the computer on which you want to enable the printer pool.

  2. Make sure that the multiple printers from same vendor and of same model are connected to the computer or to the network.

  3. Also, ensure that the corresponding drivers (single or multiple instances) are installed on the computer.

  4. Once verified, click the Start button.

  5. From the displayed Start menu, go to the Devices and Printers option.

  6. From the displayed window, under the Printers and Faxes section, right-click any of the icons of the target printing devices that you want to use to form a printer pool.

  7. From the displayed context menu, go to the Printer properties option.



  8. On the opened printer’s properties box, go to the Ports tab.

  9. From the displayed list on the Ports tab, make sure that all the instances of the drivers of
    the participating printers are present.

  10. From the bottom of the interface, check the Enable printer pooling checkbox.

  11. Once the checkbox is checked, check the checkboxes representing all the instances of the participating printer drivers displayed in the list.



  12. Once done, click OK to save the changes.

  13. If required, restart the computer in order to allow the changes to take effect.

  • Note: Make sure that you check the Enable printer pooling before checking the checkboxes representing multiple instances of the printer drivers. If you try to check the checkboxes of the instances of the printer drivers without checking the Enable printer pooling checkbox, you won’t succeed whatsoever.
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