How do I enable printer location tracking?

A. Printer location tracking, when enabled, allows Windows 2000 to calculate a location based on the users subnet and fills in the Location field.

When a user searches for a printer, Windows 2000 uses the specified location (and other search criteria) to find a printer nearby. You can also use this policy to direct users to a particular printer or group of printers that you want them to use.

If you disable this policy, or do not configure it, and the user does not enter a location as a search criteria, Windows 2000 searches for a nearby printer based on the IP address and subnet mask of the user's computer.

To use printer location tracking you must have the following:

  • Active Directory must be installed on the network
  • There must be more than one site and subnet
  • The IP addressing scheme must match the network physical layout within reason
  • Client computers must be able to query via LDAP 2 or later
  • Each site must be on a separate subnet
  • Each subnet must have have its own subnet object in the Active Directory

To enable perform the following:

  1. Start the Active Directory Users and Computers MMC snap-in (Start - Programs - Administrative Tools - Active Directory Users and Computers)
  2. Right click on the domain and select Properties
  3. Select the Group Policy tab
  4. Select the 'Default Domain Policy' object and click Edit
  5. Expand Computer Configuration - Administrative Templates - Printers
  6. Double click 'Pre-populate printer search location text'
    Click here to view image
  7. Select Enable and click Apply then OK
  8. Close the Group Policy and the MMC snap-in

You then need to set a location for each printer:

  1. Select properties for the printer
  2. Enter a location
  3. Click Apply then OK

To test try and find a printer and a new browse button will be available and your location found!

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