This article was previously published under Q264662
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
After all print jobs are completed, you have several SPL, SHD, and TMP files left over in the C:\Winnt\System32\Spool\Printers directory.
You can safely delete leftover files that have an .spl, .shd, or .tmp extension from the C:\Winnt\System32\Spool\Printers directory. These files should have been automatically deleted when the print job was printed.
The following briefly describes the purpose of SPL, SHD, and TMP files:
SPL files are the actual spool (print job) files.
TMP files are usually associated with LPR print jobs.
SHD files provide information about which printer the print job was sent to and from whom the print job came. An SHD file is a "shadow" file that keeps track of what logical printer a (same number) xxxxx.spl file goes to. It also contains the file's order in the queue, the user who sent the file to the printer, and other information. These files are usually deleted unless the logical printer settings state otherwise.