I'm trying to delete some network printer connections from a Windows Server 2003 (SP2) machine because the printer shares no longer exist. Windows shows the printers' status as "Printer not found on server, unable to connect"; this is expected; the printers are now on a different server. Only one machine ever connected to the printer shares; it no longer needs to and I'd like to clean it up.

However, when I try to delete the connections, I get an error message:

Remove Printer
Printer connection cannot be removed. Operation could not be completed.

The "solutions" I've found online seem to be more voodoo than anything (and they still don't work!). Does anybody know how I can delete these long-gone printers?


A couple of years ago I had the same problem and the only thing that worked properly was to locate the relevant registry entries and manually remove them, followed by a reboot.

  • I've also had to do this and it worked, don't forget your registry backup ;) – ITGuy24 Oct 26 '09 at 14:12
  • Yuck. I was hoping not to muck with the registry. Do you have a pointer to the relevant keys? – Jeff Hardy Oct 27 '09 at 20:26
  • As I said, it was a couple of years ago. Just do a search for the printer name and you should find all the entries. – John Gardeniers Oct 27 '09 at 20:29

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