Printer Settings in Windows – Windows Reference

Target Audience: Basic User, Advanced User, IT Manager
Article #: 12586


Understanding the relationship between Printer Preferences and Printer Defaults helps better control printer settings. This leads to more reliable printing output.


Three Common Ways to Change Printer Settings

A. Printers & Scanners

Printing Properties and Printing Preferences in Printers & Scanners console.

B. Print Manager

Printing Preferences and Printing Defaults in Print Manager.

C. Within the Application

Print Settings within an Application

Printing Setting Types

Printing Preferences (from within application)

  • Pulls default settings for all newly opened documents from the Printing Preferences set when the application is launched
  • Only lasts while the application is running. Forgets previous settings to document if the document is saved with different settings.
  • Often, different documents in the same application can retain different settings while open.

Printing Preference

  • Pulls default settings for new user from Printing Defaults settings
  • Saves changed preferences permanently for that user only.
  • Can be found in:
    • Printer & ScannersPrinting Preferences and Printer Properties Preferences button
    • Print ManagementProperties, under General Tab

Printing Defaults

  • Sets the printer settings for initial installs or new users
  • Can be found in:
    Printer & ScannersPrinter Properties Advanced tab
    • Print Management – Properties… Advanced Tab and Set Printing Defaults…

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