i bought both my laptop (dell inspiron 1150) and my printer (dell personal all-in-one printer a940) at the same time; june of 2004.
i used both the laptop and the printer from august 2004-december 2004, then the printer sat in a box until two weeks ago (i used the computer, however). i got back to school, hooked up the printer... and it doesn't work. well, let me rephrase that -- the printer is actually a scanner/copier/printer. it copies fine. i can scan, it brings up the "all in one center", but then i cannot do anything with the scanned image -- i can't send it to another program, i can't save it. obviously i can't print at all.
the only way i can get the all-in-one center to come up is by pressing the scan button on the scanner. when i try to open it manually, i get "the dell AIO printer A940 printer driver is not installed. please reinstall your printer driver". (that itself is weird, because the printer icon shows up in the taskbar whenever it's plugged in, and i never uninstalled the printer). then i go control panel --> printers & other hardware --> view installed printers or fax printers, and there is indeed nothing installed. i click on "add a printer", and i get "operation could not be completed. the print spooler service is not running".
i looked up how to enable the print spooler service (services --> print spooler --> start). whenever i try to do this, i get "Could not start the Print Spooler service on Local Computer. Error 1068: The dependency service or group failed to start".
after this, i again looked up what to do, and got the impression that i needed to download the Windows Resource Kit and run cleanspl.exe. i downloaded the resource kit, ran cleanspl.exe. it asked for the name of my computer and where to save the spooler log (or whatever), and before it could run this message came up: "unable to enumerate the files in the directory \\[computer name]\C$\WINDOWS\system32\spool\printers matching the files '*.spl'. the network path was not found. the specified directory cannot be validated".
i'm pretty much at a loose end right now, as i haven't been able to find any suggestions on what to do next. i think i've done everything i can so far in order to fix this, and it's still not working. please help me if you can; i'm getting really frustrated. thanks.