Windows 2000 and Printing: What were they thinking?

Patrick Goetz pgoetz at
Sat Apr 28 03:34:06 GMT 2001

Samba 2.2 has a lovely system for providing UNIX printers to Windows
machines complete with downloadable printer drivers which works perfectly,
at least for me.  This system is, however, as far as I can tell,
commpletely useless for Windows 2000 machines unless all the users on the
network have administrative access to the workstations they're going to

I've been working on setting up a Samba server to provide network services
for a small number of W2K machines on our mostly linux network.  After
struggling with this and that, I finally have all the Samba PDC stuff
working, including the network printers.  As an administrative user, I can
connect to any of the UNIX printers without having to worry about having
the correct printer driver installed on the workstation, which is a big
advantage.  The problem is that for W2K, network printers set up by
administrators do not automatically appear on the desktops of ordinary
domain users.  I thought the problem could be solved by having a default
login script with stuff like

    start \\samba-server\printer1
    start \\samba-server\printer2

However, whenever I try to do this as an ordinary domain user I get a
message saying 

  "You do not have sufficient access to your machine to
   connect to the selected printer".

I've tried changing the security options on the printer shares so that
Everyone, Authenticated Users, Network, etc. have complete management
access to the printers, but nothing seems to provide domain users with the
correct permissions to mount printers.  I even tried setting up the
printers for root and then copying the root profile to Default User, but
this didn't work, either.

I just can't believe that it never occurred to Microsoft that someone
would want to set up workstations used by various domain users where a
common set of network printers should be available to every user who logs
in on the machine.  On the other hand, I've spent several hours pouring
over the MS knowlege-base and various mailing lists such as
microsoft.public.win2000.printing and this question is asked over and over
again, with either no response or responses which don't, as far as I can
tell, solve the problem.

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