Printer Problems, Solved

As part of an effort to troubleshoot our slow LAN and internet connection, Val (our CTO and head geek) decided to isolate the problem by bringing his router. After a few minutes of waiting, we got our network back and it was noticeably faster. Even Gmail, which used to freeze for a few seconds, was now going smoothly.

There was only one problem: I could not connect to our office printer again. I was getting the NT_STATUS_UNSUCCESSFUL and NT_STATUS_LOGON_FAILURE again. Troubleshooting the printer connection problem was a tedious but welcome break from the office grind. It helped me understand the problem better than the first time. Here are the solutions.

Unlike the first time I encountered the problem, there were now more resources on the web to deal with the error. The solution is to tweak the URL that is used to connect to the Windows printer, so that it follows this format: smb://YOURDOMAIN;login:password@SERVER/PATHTOPRINTER

Apple specifies that you use a valid login and password (ie, it is a valid username and password in the Windows PC that is sharing the printer). Some users over the web report that a fake username and password will work, but I suspect that this is because in their environment, the Windows computer is sharing the printer to Everyone.

Some of the websites I visited told me to option-click the "More printers" button in Mac's Printer Setup Utility. Some said to option-click "Add printers". Neither worked for me. I used my CUPS (C Unix Printing System) webpage instead, which is administered via a web browser connecting to http://localhost:631/. In CUPS, I clicked the Printers tab > Modify printer button and stepped through the setup all over again until I reached the part where it prompted me for the URL. And I entered the long URL.

Valuable Readings:

Manually Reconfiguring the Printer URL
(Apple Website)
Read the thread from MacOSX Hints
Apple's Explanation of the Error

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