Using the Printer Installer client on Windows Embedded devices with Write Filter enabled

Printer Installer supports installing printers on Windows Embedded devices, even when a write filter is enabled. There are two forms of write filter: File-Based Write Filter and Enhanced Write Filter.

Configuring the Printer Installer client for use with File-Based Write Filters

  1. Log in as an administrator. At a command prompt run: fbwfmgr -disable
  2. Reboot.
  3. Log in as an administrator and install the client using the following command:
    1. For a fresh install, use: msiexec /i PrinterInstallerClient.msi WFMODE=2 HOMEURL=http://yourserver.com
    2. If there is an existing install, use: msiexec /fvomus PrinterInstallerClient.msi WFMODE=2
  4. In a command prompt run: fbwfmgr -enable
  5. Reboot.

Configuring the Printer Installer client for use with Enhanced Write Filters

  1. Log in as an administrator and install the client using the following command:
    1. For a fresh install, use: msiexec /i PrinterInstallerClient.msi WFMODE=1 HOMEURL=http://yourserver.com
    2. If there is an existing install, use: msiexec /fvomus PrinterInstallerClient.msi WFMODE=1
  2. In a command prompt run: ewfmgr -all -commit
  3. Reboot.

Notes

WFMODE is the switch that specifies what form of write filter the client will support: WFMODE=0: Disable write filter support WFMODE=1: Enhanced write filter support WFMODE=2: File-based write filter support Write filter support can be disabled globally by going to "Tools" -> "Settings" -> "Client" in the Administrator console. This can be used if something goes wrong, such as an infinite reboot loop with a file-based write filter.

What is the difference between FBWF and EWF?

The FBWF is older, only supported up to Windows XP Embedded. It is limited to NTFS file systems, and is more complicated than EWF. When FBWF support is enabled for the Printer Installer client, a full check-in is done at startup. If something needs to be done, such as adding or removing a printer, it will disable the write filter, reboot, make the changes and re-enable the write filter, then reboot once more. The EWF is the current write filter technology, and is memory-based. When EWF support is enabled for the Printer Installer client, a full check-in is done at startup. If a change needs to be made, it will make the changes, then perform a commit command and reboot.