Unable to cancel a print job with a USB printer on Windows 7 or Windows Vista

Applies to: Windows 7 StarterWindows 7 Home BasicWindows 7 Home Premium


Consider the following scenario.

- You have a USB printer attached to a Windows 7 or Windows Vista PC
- You start printing on the printer
- Communication between the PC and the printer is halted during printing.
For example, the PC is put to sleep, or the printer cover is opened.
- You cancel the print job
In this case, the job status will change to "Restarting" but the cancelation may not complete. 


When communications between the PC and printer is halted abruptly, subsequent communications may occur on a different thread in the spooler service. However, when this occurs, the spooler is not able to delete the old data from before the communication was halted.

This problem occurs due to a limitation in the Windows spooler service.


To work around this problem, perform the following action carefully to restart the spooler service using the command prompt:

1. Open Start Menu and type “cmd.exe” (without the quotes) in the search box.
2. Right click cmd.exe at the top of results list and click “Run as Administrator”
3. In the resulting command box, type the following two lines and hit enter after each line:

Net Stop Spooler
Net Start Spooler

At this point disconnect your printer’s USB cable, and then reconnect it.

Restart the PC