Jumping the Queue: How To Remove Stuck Print Requests In Your Printer Queue

29-10-2012 by

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Wouldn’t it be nice if everything just worked out right the first time? With everything you’ve got to get done in a day, who wants to be given the run around by their printer? If your printer is giving you problems, then one of the most likely explanations is that something has gone wrong with your printer queue.

Much like a physical queue, the print queue is an ordered collection of successive tasks or messages that go from your computer to your printer. This usually works on the basis of first-come-first-served. Once one job is done another can begin and your printer is not overloaded with data.

That’s how it works in theory, but from time to time a file gets stuck in the queue and stops all the subsequent files from being processed by the printer. Getting rid of this rogue file can be quite a frustrating process, particularly if your machine ignores your orders to empty the printer queue.

Right clicking on the printer queue is often not enough, so if you find yourself struggling to clear your printer’s printer queue then you should try some basic steps to reboot the process and clear your system’s memory.

printer queue with request

Step one– If you are a Windows user click on the start bar. In Windows find Services.msc (in earlier versions of Windows you’ll need to use the “Run” command and type in Services.msc).

Click on Start

Find Services.msc

Click on Services

Step two – Once you have loaded Services scroll down to “Print Spooler Service”, right click on it and select “Restart” from the dropdown options.

print spooler service

If you have a Mac, click on the Apple icon to get the Apple menu bar and select 'System Preferences' from the drop down menu. Once there, you’ll need to select ‘Print & Fax’ from the ‘System Preferences” window ('Print & Scan' in OS X 10.7 or higher). This will open the ‘Print & Fax’ window. With the printing tab selected you need to select your printer, then click the “Print Queue” button. This will call up a new window specific to the printer you have selected. Select the document you want to remove from the printer queue from the status column and click the ‘Delete’ button.

And there you have it, that annoying file should be gone and your print queue should be clear. If you are still having trouble then you could try manually selecting “Stop” and “Start” on the dropdown, but by now most problems should be cleared up.

Hopefully that should see you through the worst of what your printer queue can throw at you. If you have any questions about printer cartridges or need any help, contact us.

From all of at us at Inksaver, happy printing.


Nic Venter

About the author

Nic Venter+

 is the founder and director of He started the business in 2009 with the idea to sell ink and toner cartridges online and to provide you with a quality product, value for money and convenience. He regularly blogs on about printing and technology. Part of his philosophy is having fun and making sure that he and his team think everything ink, so you don't have to.

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