Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Fix - HP Universal Print Driver "Heavy" Paper

Read the HP Universal Print Driver 4.7 Release Notes.doc

Upgrade to UPD 4.5 or 4.7 causes paper type mismatch: When switching older HP printer drivers to newer product specific drivers or UPD 4.5 or higher, many customers have noticed that the paper type changed from "Unspecified" or "Plain" to a new setting such as "Heavy Media" following installation. This change is caused by a mismatch in the DevMode structures of the old driver and the new driver.

Current HP product specific printer drivers and UPD rely on the UNIDRV.DLL or PSCRIPT5.DLL files supplied by Microsoft. On March 8, 2007, Microsoft updated their UNIDRV.DLL and PSCRIPT5.DLL files from v5.xxx to v6.xxx and as a consequence has caused changes in the structure of DEVMODE tables within UNIDRV or PSCRIPT based drivers. HP printer drivers with file versions prior to 61.074.xx.xx* were built with the version 5 files. HP drivers with file versions of 61.074.xx.xx* or later were built for compatibility with the version 6 files. When the DevMode structure changed from version 5 to version 6, the change to the structure caused a misalignment in the variables that hold paper type, trays, etc. This caused a pre version 61.074.xx.xx hp driver with a DevMode that held a paper type of "Unspecified" or "Plain" to be read by a version 61.074.xx.xx or newer driver as "Heavy Media".

Steps: For printer driver upgrades, check the version of the HP printer driver files by selecting the printer, right click Properties, select the About tab. The version is displayed at the top of the screen. If the version is older than 61.074.xx.xx review the three scenarios below.

Scenario 1: On new/fresh server, create new print queues with new queue names: This is HP's recommended upgrade path. Users must connect to the new print shares.

Scenario 2: On same server, delete/re-create queues using the same queues and queue names: On the print server, delete each printer to be upgraded and re-create it using the new driver. Similarly, on the client side, delete the printer connections forcing default and user setting DevModes to synchronize with the server.

To delete the print queue from the system, open the Printer and Faxes window, select the queue name, right-click and select Delete
To delete the driver:
1. From the Printers and Faxes or Printers folder, click File and then Server Properties.
2. Click the Drivers tab.
3. Select the driver to be uninstalled, and then click Remove.
4. OPTIONAL: Delete the entire UPD registry entry at HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Hewlett\Packard\HP Print Settings to clean out the cached UPD registry settings.
5. OPTIONAL: remove driver files from \3 directory. Example ..\windows\system32\spool\drivers\w32x86\3

Scenario 3: On same server or new server, delete/re-create HP device print queues using the same queues and queue names, and preserve settings through scripting: This advanced level upgrade assumes customers create scripts to preserve print queue settings before deletion and repurpose those settings after new queue creation. HP white papers will be made available covering best practice and scripting examples.


  1. I have found that recreating the queue on the server is all you have to do. The clients seem to recognize that it is a different GUID and pull the new settings down correctly.

    I create a new queue of similar name and then do a name swap (this way it can be done in a live scenario and users don't notice the few seconds the printer was actually unavailable).

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  3. Thanks! You explanation of the driver behavior was a great help for a similar problem I had.

  4. Thanks ! This helped a lot ! I've been pulling my hair out !

  5. I just ran into this drama using HP UPD 5.x on a ton of older laserjet 4000 series printers. On the print queue, it showed "Heavy Paper" or "Envelope" in paper type. I changed it to unspecified, and simply unshared the print queue, reshared it with the same name and the client picked up the paper type changes.

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