32-bit verses 64-bit printer drivers

Discussion in 'Windows Networking' started by John L., Apr 28, 2010.

  1. John L.

    John L. Guest

    My company network is using an older HP LaserJet 4100TN printer. This worked
    for years by deploying the network driver from a 32-bit Windows print server
    to 32-bit company workstations. We have recently upgraded some of the
    workstations to Windows 7 64-bit (we were previously using all 32-bit

    The 64-bit Windows 7 machines are not able to download and use the 32-bit
    printer driver that is hosted on our Windows 32-bit printer server. We
    attempted to upgrade to a Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit printer server. That
    seems to work for the Windows 7 64-bit workstations, but not the 32-bit.

    The HP manufacturer appears to offer a universal driver that supports both,
    but this is not working for us so far:

    See this link:


    We would like to deploy both the 32-bit and 64-bit printer drivers from one
    server. Is there a solution for this? Is there a Microsoft White Paper that
    is designed to address this issue that you can point me to?

    Or does this require two machines to deploy the separate drivers?

    Thank you for the help.
    John L., Apr 28, 2010
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  2. Hello John L.,

    See here from another posting as 64/32bit driver assignment has changed within
    Windows server 2008:

    INSTALL additional drivers to 64 or 32bit systems.
    1). The driver names must match. HP Color LaserJet 9500 PCL6 driver is not
    the same driver as HP Color LaserJet 9500 PCL 6. HP has figured this out
    but I do know that they will release a Universal driver for a device on x64
    just to have support. It will work for the device but it's not the same driver
    as the HP Color LaserJet 3800.

    2) Install the cross platform drivers for the print server OS. I know you
    are looking for 32bit drivers for XP but install the 32bit drivers for Server
    2003 or Server 2008. Most vendors have written install infs for a specific
    operating system and quite frankly when we change things how drivers are
    installed in the OS, those older infs cannot be used on the new OS.

    3) Read the prompt for media dialogs. The first thing that is required is
    the vendor inf, the next is the path to ntprint.inf of the OS architecture,
    if unidrv.dll or pscript5.dll are in the same path great, if not , that's
    the next path. If the driver inf is working correctly, the next path is the
    first path for the driver files. If the driver files are in a different
    directory, you will need to specify this path.
    If you extract the complete file set to the same location, you can work
    around the multiple prompts.
    Alan Morris
    Windows Printing Team
    Search the Microsoft Knowledge Base here:

    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.
    Meinolf Weber [MVP-DS], Apr 28, 2010
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  3. John L.

    John L. Guest

    It looks like that is for a different printer. I'm sorry if I am not being
    clear. My question pertains to installing 32-bit and 64-bit drivers on the
    same server (for deployment across a network that has a mixture of 32-bit and
    64-bit client machines).

    Is this something that Windows Server supports? Is there some precise
    information on any special steps that need to be taken in order to implement
    this? Is this something that is specific to the driver vendor? It appears
    that the HP link that I provided says that the Universal driver should
    support this (as a single driver actually). It is not working though. I get
    an error that the driver is not correct when I try to add it to a 32-bit
    machine. I'm not sure where to go from here.

    Thank you for the help.
    John L., Apr 28, 2010
  4. Hello John L.,

    The mentioned drivers see as an example. The driver names still have to be
    the same.
    Meinolf Weber [MVP-DS], Apr 29, 2010
  5. John L.

    John L. Guest

    I'm confused with some of that post (especially parts 2 and 3). Would you
    mind elaborating on those?

    Also, for part 1, I understand the concept that the driver files must have
    the same name in order for it to work. Based on that, I assume that these
    files would have to be in different directories in order to have the same
    name. If so, what are these directories? Are we talking about the actual
    driver files or the info files in this case?

    May I at least presume that I am able to deploy 32-bit and 64-bit drivers
    from the same server? Or does this capability vary by manufacture?

    I appreciate your help.
    John L., Apr 29, 2010
  6. John L.

    John L. Guest

    Is there anyone that can help with this?
    John L., May 4, 2010
  7. John L.

    Jeremy Guest

    Not sure you're still following this post or not, but I'll try to help.

    I have this working on my network. All x64 and x86 clients are connecting
    to a single Server 2008 R2 print server.

    First, download the drivers from the corresponding manufacturer site. In
    this case, you could use the HP Universal print driver. Download both the
    x64 and x86 drivers.
    Expand the drivers into a folder accessible from your print server.

    Open your Print Manager in Server 2008 R2. Do this by opening
    printmanagement.msc or by adding the Print Management Snap-in into an MMC.
    Expand Print Servers > servename (local) > Printers
    In the right pane, right click and server and choose properties.
    Make sure you are using the driver you downloaded by clicking the advanced
    tab and adding the driver you downloaded.
    Click the Sharing tab.
    Click the Additional Drivers button at the bottom.
    Check the x86 and click ok. It will ask you to browse to the correct
    drivers. Just browse to the expanded x86 drivers you downloaded from HP.

    Let me know if that helps.
    Jeremy, May 14, 2010
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