It happens from time to time that a print job is not processed by Windows and that it cannot be deleted at the same time; a stuck print job so to speak which will block all other print jobs from being processed.
Even a restart of the computer system will not get rid of the stuck print job which makes it one of the most frustrating experienced when working with the operating system.
There is however a fast and efficient method to remove stuck print jobs from the print queue so that printing is not blocked anymore.
All that needs to be done basically is to stop the Print Spooler service, delete the stuck print jobs manually and restart the Print Spooler service afterwards.
This can all be done using the Windows command line for maximum effectiveness or in the Windows Explorer interface for users who prefer to click their way through the process.
To use the GUI approach you tap on Windows-R, type services.msc and look for the Print Spooler service. Right-click that service and select stop from the context menu.
This will stop the Print Spooler so that you can delete print jobs from the queue. Keep the window open as we need it again to start the Print Spooler service.
Now use Windows Explorer to open %systemroot%\system32\spool\printers\ and delete all files that are found inside. Once that has been done it is time to start the Print Spooler service again.
This is done in the same way it was stopped.Right-click the service again in the Services manager and select Start from the context menu to start it again. If you don't do that, you won't be able to print at all. All print jobs should be gone and it should be possible to run new print jobs again.
If you prefer the command line you can run the following four commands for the same effect. It is probably a good idea to add them to a batch script as you'd just have to click on the file to execute it and perform the operation in one step.
net stop spooler
net start spooler
The script does exactly the same as the manual method. The two lines in the middle delete the print jobs, the first stops the Print Spooler service, the last starts it again on the system.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.