Dealing with Printer Error 0x8000ffff, which stems from a catastrophic failure, can be frustrating. When this issue occurs, you may have difficulty printing, installing the correct drivers, or updating the printer software.
This error code can be caused by a number of underlying factors, such as software conflicts, outdated drivers, antivirus interruption, or incomplete Windows updates. However, whatever the reason, we have provided practical solutions below to help you fix the problem. Choose the solution that best suits your situation.
1. Restart your computer
Before discussing system-specific troubleshooting methods, we suggest that you restart your system. This will refresh the system and remove any conflicts or temporary issues that may be causing the error.
Also, it will help the system reset the printer and establish a new connection with it.
After the system restarts, perform the action that initially triggered the error. If it reappears, continue to the next method below. Make sure you are logged in with your administrator account, as the solutions below will require administrative access to the system. If you are currently using a standard user account, switch to an administrator account and then continue.
2. Run relevant troubleshooters
The next thing we recommend you do is run the built-in troubleshooters, which work by scanning the system for potential errors and if any issues are identified, they will attempt to fix the issues automatically.
In the case of this specific error, we suggest that you start by running the Windows Update Troubleshooter.
Indeed, in several cases, the printer error is triggered by conflicts or inconsistencies with Windows updates. These updates may include driver updates, system updates, and updates to other relevant components that may be critical to the operation of your printer.
The Windows Update Troubleshooter will focus on detecting and fixing issues related to update installation, update downloads, or update configuration.
After the update troubleshooter completes its process, run the printer troubleshooter. This tool scans the system for printer connectivity issues, relevant drivers, or print queue errors. If any problem is identified, it will automatically fix it or suggest relevant fixes that you can perform automatically, fixing the printer error in the process.
3. Clear Print Spooler Files
The Windows Print Spooler service manages print jobs, ensuring they are directed to the correct printer for processing. However, sometimes a print job gets stuck or corrupted in the print spooler queue, leading to issues like this.
In cases like this, you can try clearing the print spooler files, which will essentially eliminate all problematic print jobs from the queue, hoping to fix the error.
- press the Earn + R keys together to open Run.
- Type “services.msc” in Run and press Enter.
- In the next window, find the Print spooler service and right-click on it.
- Choose Properties from the context menu.
- Now click on the Stop button and click Apply > ALL RIGHT to save changes.
- Leave the Services window open and go to File Explorer.
- Navigate to the location below:
- In the PRINTERS folders, delete all files and confirm the action in the User Account Control prompt. You will need administrative access to the system for this.
- Once done, return to the Services window and open the Print Spooler Service Properties dialog.
- Click on Begin and change the startup type to Automatique.
- Click on Apply > ALL RIGHT to save changes.
You can now close the Services window and check if the issue is resolved.
4. Temporarily disable your antivirus
Another possible cause of the running error is the interruption of the antivirus. If you are using a third-party security program on your computer, it may conflict with the printer process, causing issues like the one under review.
An easy way to check if this is the case is to temporarily disable the antivirus. You can usually achieve this by right-clicking the antivirus icon in your taskbar and choosing Disable until my computer restarts. The exact steps for this process vary depending on the program you are using.
Once the program is disabled, perform the action that was triggering the printer error and check if it appears now. If not, it is best to consider switching to another security program to prevent such issues from happening again.
5. Reinstall the printer
Finally, if none of the above solutions solved the problem for you, you can try reinstalling the printer as a last resort.
This method involves removing the existing printer installation from your system and then reinstalling it from scratch. This will fix issues with corrupted printer software, driver issues, and other printer conflicts.
Follow these steps to continue:
- Unplug the printer and other unnecessary peripherals from your computer.
- Press Earn + I keys to open the Settings app and access Bluetooth and devices > Printers and scanners.
- Here, click on the printer you want to remove and click on the To withdraw button.
- Once done, go to the manufacturer’s website and download the latest driver software for your printer.
- Run the downloaded file and follow the on-screen instructions to install.
- When prompted, reconnect the printer to your computer. The system will automatically recognize it and configure it using the newly installed driver.
Hopefully, once the printer is reinstalled, you won’t encounter the annoying error 0x8000ffff again.
Restart the printer in Windows
The solutions listed above should help you resolve the catastrophic error once and for all. To prevent such issues from happening in the future, we strongly recommend that you keep printer drivers up to date and ensure that the relevant services are working properly. You can also check the official documentation provided by the manufacturer of the printer to ensure that you are installing it correctly.
If the problem reappears even after taking all the precautionary measures, you can contact Microsoft official support team for further assistance.