How to Fix the “Another Computer Is Using the Printer” Error on Windows 10 & 11

For many users, printing documents and images are essential. However, some users’ printers don’t print because of a Windows error message that says, “Another computer is using the printer.” Users have reported this error message appears when they select to print in Windows software packages.

This error message suggests the printer can’t print because it’s already in use by another computer. However, the error also arises for home users who aren’t sharing their printers with other computers on organization networks. This is how you can fix the “Another computer is using the printer” error on Windows 10 & 11.

1. Restart the printer

Restarting the printer is a simple possible fix that’s worth a try. This solution may resolve a printer that is stuck on a previous request. Turn off your printer and turn it on again after a few moments to see if this makes any difference.

2. Uncheck the “Allow Windows My default printer to manage” option

You can also find out more about the following: Windows will manage my default Printer When enabled, this option makes the printer that was most recently used the default. This can cause issues if the printer with which you’re trying to print isn’t set as default. This can be disabled by following these steps:

  1. Click the button to open the Start menu and then right-click it. Search Engine.
  2. Types of printers & scanners Inside the search tool.
  3. Select Printers & scanners To open the Settings section, click on it.
  4. Turn off your Windows will manage my default Printer setting by clicking that option’s toggle switch.
    The Allow Windows to manage my default printer option

  5. Select your printer by clicking on Settings. Set as default button.
    The Set as default button

In Settings, you may see an alternate WS printer (most commonly for Canon models). The WS stands for web services, and that printer shouldn’t be your default one. Make sure you have your standard printer set as default.

3. Print Troubleshooter

Windows has a Printer troubleshooter that’s there to detect and resolve all manner of printing issues. So, that troubleshooter could feasibly offer a solution for the “Another computer is using the printer” error. This article on how to run any Troubleshooter will explain how you can get that troubleshooter from the Windows 11/10 Settings App.

The Printer troubleshooter

Make sure the printer’s cable is connected to your PC before running the Printer troubleshooter if it’s a non-wireless one. Choose your printer’s model from the troubleshooter. Then, apply the suggested fixes.

4. Start or restart the Print Spooler

Print spooler handles print jobs. Some users say they’ve been able to fix the “Another computer is using the printer” error by restarting that service. This solution can be applied by following our step-by-step directions in the article on how to restart the Printer Spooler. If the service isn’t already running, click its Start option.

The Restart option for the Print Spooler service

5. Clear the Printers Folder

The Printers directory is a spooler that stores print jobs. Deleting files in that folder is a potential solution for the “Another computer is using the printer” error as that will clear the print queue. Here’s how to clear the Printers Folder on Windows 10/11:

  1. Press the button to access Services Windows logo + You can also read about R Type key combination services.msc Run. OK.
  2. Right-click on the Print spooler Service and Select Stop.
    The Stop option

  3. Click the button to learn more. Windows + The following are some of the reasons why you should consider hiring someone else Use keyboard shortcuts to open the File Manager tool.
  4. You can find this folder by clicking on the following link:
  5. Press and hold the button to select all items in the printers folder. Ctrl + The following are some of the ways to get in touch with each other.
    The PRINTERS folder

  6. Click the button to learn more. Del The keyboard is used to delete the selected files.
  7. Click on the Services app and then click on “Return to Services” Print spooler. and select Start.

6. Disconnect previous users

If you share your PC with other users, the “Another computer is using the printer” error could be due to a previous user who hasn’t been completely logged off. This can be fixed by disabling previous users using Task Manager.

  1. Select the desired space by right-clicking on any area of the taskbar. Task Manager shortcut.
  2. Click here to learn more. Users tab.
  3. Right-click on a previous member of the group. Users Tab and select Disconnect.
    The Disconnect option

  4. Continue the previous step to disconnect any users that are not you.

7. Update the Printer’s Driver

Printer drivers that are outdated can lead to a variety of printing problems. So, you may need to update your printer’s driver to resolve the “Another computer is using the printer” error if other potential solutions aren’t effective.

You can update a printer’s driver by manually downloading it from the manufacturer’s website. Epson’s, HP’s, Cannon’s, Brother Xerox and Brother sites all have sections where you can download drivers for the printers they sell. When you’ve downloaded the driver for your printer, you can double-click on the driver setup package to install it. Update device drivers with this article on finding and replacing outdated Windows drivers.

The printer driver downloads section on the HP website

Getting the “Another computer is using the printer” error fixed is essential for the many users who can’t afford to lose printing functionality. Many users were able to resolve the problem by using these Windows 11/10 solutions. So, applying them will probably get that issue sorted on your Windows PC, and then you can print to your heart’s content again.

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