Automatically Moving Users to a New Print Server


Our office needed to take down and replace our aging print server. The server had 25 Data Link Control (DLC) and TCP/IP printers attached to it. I used the simple registry technique that Sean Daily discusses in the sidebar "Poor Man's Consolidation Toolkit" in "Making the Case for Server Consolidation" (May 2000) to successfully move the printers to the new server.

Rather than have my IT staff manually reconfigure our company's 200 workstations to print to the new printers, I scripted the process. I used the Microsoft Windows 2000 Resource Kit's prnmgr.vbs and prnadmin.dll utilities and the Windows NT Zero Administration Kit (ZAK) con2prt.exe tool to develop the script in Listing 1 to check users' network printer connections and redirect and connect users to the corresponding new printer.

First, the script copies the files prnmgr.vbs, prn-admin.dll, and con2prt.exe onto each workstation. Using prnmgr.vbs to list all the network printers attached to a workstation, then parsing that information to a text file lets the for statement connect a user to a new printer.

Initially, you need to input and map the old print servers to the new ones. To expedite this task, you can use prnmgr.vbs to obtain a list of all the printers attached to a network print server, then use a spreadsheet or text editor to match the old print servers to the new ones.

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