The process of printing seems easy, it seems like it is from the screen to the paper, however, this is far from the truth. When the document is sent to the printer it is translated to what the printer can understand, if documents are being printed, the other documents are Spooled as they await their turn. Spool is where the print job is held until it is ready to be printed. Printers do not have large memory like computers so spooling helps to hold the file in a line and keep track of which file is next. Because of the intermediaries between the screen and the paper problems can develop and you may notice that documents disappear from the print queue without printing.
Documents disappear from print queue without printing
If you ever have to print, you know how frustrating it is when the documents do not print. The print queue shows the documents waiting to be printed. In some cases, the document will disappear from the queue when it is being printed. However, there are times when the document will disappear but is not printed. Let us look at reasons why the document will disappear from the queue but not come out on paper, we will also look at ways to fix this problem.
- Check Memory
- Update Printer Driver
- Check Document size and contents
- Run the Printer Troubleshooter.
1] Check Memory
Just like your computer, printers do have memory, but the memory in a printer does not have as large a capacity as the one in your computer. If your printer runs out of memory it will have problems holding files that it needs to print. When you send documents to be printed and the printer is low on memory, some of the files may disappear from the queue. The queue will hold files that are being printed and files that are waiting to be printed. If the memory is low the printer will not be able to hold all the files, some may disappear from the queue without coming out on paper.
If you suspect that the printer is low on memory, you can turn off the printer. Clear the print queue on the computer as well. Restart the printer then try to print again. Larger printers especially laser printers have the capacity for extra memory. You can upgrade the memory in the printer and this will help with printing.
2] Update Driver
Printer drivers need to be compatible with the computer and the printer. The printer driver is what goes between the computer and the printer so that documents can be sent and printed. If the driver is not compatible possibly due to it being the wrong driver or it is outdated, this may cause documents to disappear from the print queue without printing. Drivers may also become corrupt due to malware or if there is an improper shutdown of the computer possibly due to power failure.
Ensure that the computer and printer drivers are compatible, and search the printer manufacturer’s website for the correct driver for the printer. Ensure that the printer driver and your computer are up to date. Check the manufacturer’s website for printer driver updates. Go to the computer system and check for updates to Windows. Windows accommodate updates for the computer’s hardware as well when you do an update. You may have to remove the printer driver and reinstall it and see if this helps.
3] Check Document size and contents
Documents may disappear from the printer queue without printing based on the document’s properties. One of the main document properties is size. Large files may cause problems when sent to print. The document can be large not just because of the number of pages but also due to the photos and other graphics present in the document. the document may also be largely due to other things linked to the document. Files may also have corrupt elements in them, for example, a PDF file may have fonts that are not properly embedded. A document may be a combination of premade elements that were used before, this may cause the documents to have problems when it is to be printed.
If you have documents disappearing from the print queue and not coming out on paper, you can test other files and see if they print. If other files print then you know that something is wrong with the document. You can try to print the document page by page or section by section. You will then reach the part of the document that causes the problem and you may then figure out what is the cause of the problem. If the problem is based on the file being too large for the printer’s memory, the problem will not occur if the file is printed in small batches or page by page.
If you reuse parts of documents, create a proper template as the foundation of the document. Depending on what the document is, you can use Illustrator or other software to create templates. The template can then be placed into Microsoft Word and saved to be used whenever you need to create a file. The great thing about the template is that the images and other contents are flat and compressed so that the file is not large. Since it will be used for small files it can be saved as JPEG or other small file types.
Ensure that PDF files are created from sources that have properly embedded fonts and other elements.
4] Run the Printer Troubleshooter
The Printer Troubleshooter will check if:
- You have the latest Printer drivers, and fix and or update them
- If you have connectivity issues
- If the Print Spooler and required Services are running fine
- Any other Printer related issues.
Run it and see if it helps.
Read: Printer printing only Small Fonts and not large
Why do documents stay in queue and not printing?
There are a few reasons why your document stays in the queue and do not get printed to paper.
One reason is that the document may be quite complex and the printer may need time to process the document before printing. You may need to wait a while for the printer to process the document.
Another reason why the document may be stuck in the queue is that the printer may be low on memory so it may take a while to process or it may not process. You should turn off the printer and computer, wait for between 10 to 30 seconds then power them back on and try to print again.
Another reason the document gets stuck in the queue is that the printer driver needs updating. Check the manufacturer’s website for driver updates. You can also set the driver to be updated automatically when there are new updates available.
Another reason for the document to be stuck in the print queue is that there may be a tripped error code that causes the printer to stop. Check the printer for any error codes that are displayed if the printer has a display screen. If the printer has no screen, check the computer to see if there are any error messages. The printer may stop printing if there is an error so that it is not seriously damaged.
Read: How to check Print History in Windows
How do I delete a document from my printer queue that won’t delete?
There are a few ways to delete stubborn documents from the printer queue. One way to delete the document is to restart the Print spooler service. To restart the Print spooler service click the Winkey + R at the same time. When the Run window appears type services.msc. When the Services window opens up scroll down to Print spooler. You then right-click on the Print spooler and click Stop. You then go to C:\Windows\System32\spool\PRINTERS, open the folder, and delete the files in the folder but not the folder itself. You then go back to the Services window, right-click on the Print spooler and click Start.