How do I capture a spool file from a Windows print queue?

In troubleshooting problems, it is sometimes necessary to capture the data (spool file) being sent to the printer. Below are instructions for two different methods for capturing a spool file on a Windows computer.

The first step is to make sure that output is spooled to the printer, rather than printing directly.

  • Go to Devices and Printers, right click on the printer queue, and select "Printer Properties". 
  • Make sure that the setting "Spool print documents so program finishes printing faster" radio button is selected.

Next, we pause printing to the queue so we can capture the file:

  • Right click in Devcies and Printers, select See What's Printing
  • Select Pause Printing


Next, open the spool directory ( C:\Windows\System32\spool\PRINTERS\ ) to watch for the spool file after it enters the queue


Print your document through the print queue

Look for files with an extension of *.spl in the directory: 


Email the spool file to TypeHaus. 

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