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Don't Suffer Printing Downtime Because of 32- and 64-bit Driver Confusion

Posted by Chris Summerhays on August 23rd, 2016

Ever since the widespread migration from 32- to 64-bit platforms began—and with it the migration from 32-bit printer drivers to 64-bit printer drivers—there have been lingering compatibility problems. In most areas, incompatibility between 32- and 64-bit architectures has gradually resolved itself as 64-bit solutions have become available and 32-bit environments have been phased out over time. When it comes to printing, however, there are still many organizations who continue to struggle with the inability to use 32-bit printer drivers on 64-bit computers and vice versa.

The hard and fast rule is that 64-bit printer drivers cannot be used on 32-bit systems, and 32-bit printer drivers cannot be used on 64-bit platforms. Simple enough. But when you have a mixed 32-/64-bit environment and 32-bit and 64-bit printer drivers existing side by side, that can be a recipe for confusion. Even though newer print server platforms have responded to longstanding complaints about driver conflicts by offering improved driver support, there are continued problems with, for example, 32-bit printer drivers accidentally being deployed to 64-bit clients. This can cause printing downtime for individual end users, who then have to call the service desk to sort things out.

And because print servers have never been very robust in terms of driver management, these issues are more than just isolated individual cases. When two different versions of the same driver (meaning the 64-bit printer driver version and the 32-bit one) are forced to coexist in a single print environment, it can lead to conflicts that cause widespread downtime on account of print spooler issues, which also have 32- and 64-bit versions.

End users who can't print as a result of server downtime are rarely happy end users. They also have very little sympathy when your service desk technician explains the intricacies behind trying to use a 32-bit printer driver on a 64-bit computer.

Thanks to its powerful driver management, PrinterLogic enables your organization to avoid printing downtime (and unhappy end users) by avoiding conflicts between 32-bit printer drivers and 64-bit printer drivers – not to mention more general driver conflicts between printer models, manufacturers and operating systems. Its central repository provides you with a single destination to upload new drivers, update existing ones and disable or delete those no longer in use. Even in virtual environments like Citrix and VMware. From here you can deploy drivers to clients enterprise wide, selectively or en masse. This simple but granular administration allows you to reliably associate 32-bit and 64-bit printer drivers with their respective client devices and platforms, so there's never a risk of driver incompatibility and downtime.

Along with its incredible driver management, PrinterLogic's management console allows you to customize profiles in a detailed way. With a few simple clicks you can configure driver settings such as DPI, duplexing, paper size, paper tray and color or black-and-white printing for individual end users or entire client pools. What's more, you can leverage PrinterLogic's universal driver support to ensure broad compatibility in heterogeneous environments that use a mix of operating systems and architectures.

PrinterLogic's flexible yet robust print management solution removes the uncertainty and confusion from print environments that continue to maintain 64- and 32-bit printer drivers alongside one another. In doing so, it ensures the high availability of printing services across the enterprise. That won't just make your end users happy. It will delight your service desk team too.

Chris Summerhays
Chris Summerhays
Before becoming PrinterLogic's Technical Marketing Engineer, I spent more than two years as as a Systems Engineer and Sales Engineer working side by side with IT professionals to eliminate print servers from their environment. I have a Bachelors in Information Technology and love learning about all of the new and innovating solutions that continue to revolutionize the IT industry. .

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