Question: When I try to print something from online, a window pops up and says the printer spool is not running and will not print, what is this?
Answer: When you request to print a page it is not written straight to the printer as the printer may still be processing a prior print request. Instead all print output is written to a storage area called the print spool. A separate program called the spooler usually runs in the background and handles the task of transferring the content of the spool area to the printer. When the spooler program is not running then there is nothing to copy the files to the printer. How you get the spooler to start if it is not running depends on which operating system you are running. On Windows NT/2000/XP systems typing NET START SPOOLER at a command prompt may get the spooler running again. Rebooting the computer will usually correct the problem (at least in the short term). If the spooler keeps crashing then a corrupted printer driver is probably to blame.
This article written by Stephen Chapman, Felgall Pty Ltd.