Home EDITOR’S PICKS How to properly Migrate Print Services from Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2019

How to properly Migrate Print Services from Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2019

by Cengiz Kuskaya

Migrating a Print Server from Windows Server 2012 or 2012R2 to Windows Server 2019 is a pretty straightforward action but what to do if all or some of the Print Queues cannot migrated properly to the destionation Server ? What if the Print Queues doesn’t appear on the destination Server ? In this tutorial I will show you how you can migrate and troubleshoot the possible problems.

The Print Management Console both in Windows Server 2012/R2 and Windows Server 2019 uses PrintBrm.exe and PrintBrmEngine.exe Command Line Tools in the background to migrate the Printer Drivers and Queues.

PrintBrm.exe is located under the following destination C:\Windows\System32\spool\tools\PrintBrm.exe on every server. If you prefer to use the Command Line Version instead of the UI Version you can type PrintBrm.exe /? to get more information about the Options and Parameters. The CMD Version of the Printer Migration Tool gives you of course more customization options which aren’t available in the UI (PMC Console).
 

Overview at a glance :

1. Export Printer Queues and Drivers on Windows Server 2012/R2
2. Import Printer Queues and Drivers on Windows Server 2019
3. Troubleshoot possible problems with migrated Print Queues and Drivers

 

1. Export Printer Queues and Drivers on Windows Server 2012/R2

 
1.1 Open the Print Management Console > Right click Print Management in the left pane and click Migrate Printers.

1.2 Select Export printer queues and printer drivers to a file.

1.3 Select this print server.

1.4 Review the list of items to be exported.

1.5 Select the file location.

1.6 Exporting … .

1.7 A Printer Migration File will be generated which includes both your Printer Queue Information and Printer Drivers.

 

2. Import Printer Queues and Drivers on Windows Server 2019

 
2.1 On the target Windows 2019 Print Server 4 Printers are available.

2.2 Select “Import printer queues and printer drivers from a file.

2.3 Select the copied “Printer Migration File”.

2.4 Click on “Next”.

2.5 Review the list of items to be imported and click on next.

2.6 Select This print server.

2.7 Select import options. In this example I will keep my existing printers on my Windows Server 2019 Printer Server.

2.8 Importing … .

2.9 Importing Settings … .

2.10 Once Import is complete click on “Finish”.

2.11 Go back to the Print Management Console and check if all imported Printer Drivers are visible.

2.12 Check and be sure that all of your Printe Queues are visible.

 
I would strongly recommend to print a test page on all migrated (imported) print queues. Furthermore be sure that all print queues are visible. If you figure that some of your print queues aren’t visible in PMC or any print jobs gets stuck please proceed as follows to troubleshoot the problems.
 

3. Troubleshoot possible problems with migrated Print Queues and Drivers

 
3.1 The Print Queue information are stored under the following Registry Key on the destination Windows Server 2019. Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Printers . If your Print Queue doesn’t appear in PMC or Printer and Devices, first be sure that the Print Queue information is visible in the Registry. If the Print Queue is visible in the Registry but not in PMC or Printer and Devices, this would mean that some of the related Printer Driver DLL’s could not be exported successfully. Under these circumstances you have to install the driver again. The missing Print Queue will appear automatically after the driver installation but it has to be the same driver and version which you installed on the source W2K12 Print Server.

3.2 The Printer Driver information are stored under the following Registry Key on your destination Windows Server 2019 Print Server Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Print\Environments\Windows x64\Drivers\Version-4 . In case of a driver re-installation if you receive an error message that the driver is already installed and you cannot remove it over the PMC, you have to stop the spooler service and remove the related driver key from the registry and start the spooler service again. Afterwards you can re-install the required printer drivers.

Good luck !