How to Find Out What Was Printed on Your Printer

Written by langstond
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How to Find Out What Was Printed on Your Printer
A picture can hold a thousand words or so. (The printer image by vin5 from

With the growing popularity of home networks many printers are now capable of being shared among multiple computers. These printers can be bombarded with files and documents. You might be curious about what is being printed on these printers. By default the printer drops any files that are printed on the printer after the job is finished. However, there is an option in the printer drivers that keeps a record of all documents printed. Enabling this and viewing the print queue works as effectively as any third party software.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Click on the start menu orb that is located on the bottom left corner of the screen. Move the mouse over to the right side panel on the start menu and locate the "Devices and Printers" button. Click the button to bring up the next menu.

  2. 2

    Select the printer you want to change the properties of so that it keeps a record of all the files printed. Right click on the printer and then roll the mouse down to "Printer Properties." Click on the "Advanced Tab" within the Printer Properties window.

  3. 3

    Click on the check box next to the text "Keep Printed Documents." This option will ensure that any documents printed to the printer will be saved. Press the "Apply" button to save the changes and then press the "OK" button.

  4. 4

    View any files that have been printed to the printer by clicking on the printer within the "Devices and Printer" menu that was opened in the previous steps. Right-click on the printer that has the "Keep Printed Documents" check box enabled. Click the "See What's Printing" option at the top of the pop-up menu. A new menu will appear with all the documents that have been printed to the printer.

Tips and warnings

  • Only the documents that have been printed after the "Keep Printed Documents" check box has been enabled will show and stay permanently within the print history.

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