Sunday, November 9, 2014

Google Cloud Print -- getting offline printers back online (for Chromebook, or other devices)

Quick Fix: scroll to Solution below.

What it is:  Google Cloud Print is a great way to share your printers with someone else; all you need is the Chrome browser.

A friend needs to print something?
They could send you the file, you could save it, open it and hope it looks the same, doesn't contain any malware, you have the same program and version, and then print it.  Or they could install the necessary drivers, software, and then come over and configure a new printer.
Or, you can just share the printer with them (like you do any google doc),
and it will appear in their list of printers available to them (at least from Chrome).
No additional software to install,
no special configuration,
just select that printer in the list of available printers.

Visiting an office or campus, and don't have access to the network printers, don't have the drivers available, etc. ?
Having someone share their printer via google cloud print is an easy way for you to print something there and not bother them every time.  If you don't have a printer, or want to pay for some high-quality output, you can also print directly to a Fedex/kinkos office (and probably other commercial print services) ("Print to Fedex Office" is already available when you print from Chrome).

You don't even have to be on the same network, so you can print on the printer at work while you're at home or on the road, or vice versa.  Some newer printers come "Cloud print enabled", other (older dumb, or directly attached) printers will need to have a Chrome browser running on a computer that can print to that printer (and is shared with you).  An old or cheap computer could be set up to run chrome and be the office "print server", saving everyone one else from having to all install the

Sharing printers via google cloud print may be the only way to print from a Chromebook or Android (direct printing, not by emailing files or photos), because the printer may not support this device or have "drivers" available (stupid manufacturers should use common open protocols, not proprietary device-specific controls).

Symptom:

Occasionally, the printer goes offline.  After months of working fine, it stopped, and said "Printer offline for 10 days", even though it was on, and I had printed to it (minutes before) from the computer where I had shared it.  "Cloud Printers"
showed it as offline, but refreshing did not change the status.
One thing that would probably work is removing, and then adding the printer again to Google Cloud Print (and then probably having to share it again with everyone).  I was starting down this route, and the first step to adding a printer is to go to Chrome settings, find Google Cloud Print (fastest way is to just type "print" into the Search settings box), and then click the Manage button.

Solution:

Just viewing the devices listed in Google Cloud Print brought the printer back online.
In fact I heard the printer wake up and it commenced to printing the queued document.
Here's a shortcut to that section in your settings:
  -- you'll need to copy and paste it manually (browser security reasons),
or search in settings for "printers".

Now, go the the "Cloud Printers" link above, or if you have the tab open already click refresh, and now it should be online.


If you are using Windows and want to print from other programs, there is "Cloud Printer" software (available from Google).

Why does the printer go offline?  I don't know.
Did this work for you?
Let me know.

Update 2016-02-21This has been reported as a bug at the link below. To vote for it to get fixed, please go to the link and click the star icon near the upper left corner of the webpage. You need to be signed into your Google account to vote. 
https://bugs.chromium.org/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=588462 

42 comments:

Andreas Diesner said...

Same here... printer was offline for days with two queued documents printed from other computers. Going to chrome://devices brought the printer back online and the documents were printed.

So far it sucks... haven't really used it yet. But my assumption was that as soon as I start Chrome on a computer that is connected to my network printer it will print the queued documents.

Arthur Jackson said...

This is a chrome problem. When the printer sleeps it goes offline, then have to go to settings to put it back on. Have no problem with firefox it never goes offline.

Todd Kaufmann said...

Thanks, I'll have to give Firefox a test.

p.s. Do you have two sheds ?

James said...

Awesome, this worked for me too.

I had the same experience as well, printed to it earlier and it worked fine but then it went offline.

Thanks!

Pilothouse32 said...

I am on a Chromebook and the printer always shows up offline, even though I can see it (and change settings on it) via the IP in the Chrome browser. It will beep if I Save Settings, so I know it is connecting real time. I can print from my Android phone or my iPad sometimes to kick the printer into gear, so perhaps it's not just a Chrome problem. Today, however, required a printer reboot. I first tried other things like logging in and out of the Chromebook, deleting and re-adding the printer (I could not do this step, as it did not see the device through the chrome://devices page, despite being able to see it via the IP). I even tried printing from my iPad and could not, though I could choose the printer. Hopefully, these issues will be resolved soon, along with the scanner problems (to a Chromebook).

Mz Gus Chavez said...

I also have this issue and going to chrome://devices also fixes it. Very annoying.

Rick Hart said...

I can print from all of my Android tablets and Samsung S5 as well as the Dell tablet that the printer is registered to. All of them say Printer online, ready, available, etc. The only thing it cannot print to is my Samsung Chromebox. Everything is up to date with the latest firmware and versions. The Chromebox always show the Printer (a Dell 1265DNF Cloud Ready) as Offline. I use Google docs on the Chromebox and in order to print a Google dos, I have to save it to my Google drive and retrieve it on one of my tablets or phone and print from their. I have researched extensively and have not found any answers. Looking into Devices did not help at all

Owned by me
Last print job was 10 days ago
Location not available
Printer is offline
Advanced Details
Printer Type
Cloud Ready Printer
Registered with Cloud Print
Feb 13, 2015, 1:15:59 PM
Last Updated
Feb 13, 2015, 1:15:59 PM
Printer ID
f517ed32-25ad-6197-8da2-048c92910b02
Supported Content Types
application/pdf
Proxy
CLOUDSEC

Angel M. Hernandez said...

This worked! Thanks :)

John Bower said...

Sorry, but this doesn't always work.

Jon said...

Running a help desk for a PreK-12 school and I have been seeing this quite a bit on my print server. The solution that I have found that works for me is adding another copy of the printer (chrome://devices - Add Classic Printer) and then later deleting it (https://www.google.com/cloudprint#printers - Delete the copies you just added). The original printers that are shared come back online.

Nick Newsome said...

I tried going to chrome://devices and manage printers, but neither worked. Then I unplugged the printer and plugged it back in. It fired back up and printed the document in the queue.

Kathy Dempsey said...

this didn't work for me. I'm trying to print from an HP Chromebook 14 and the only way I can print from it is if my PC is on (the PC that I almost gave away when I got the Chromebook). I just printed a doc from my Edge, no problem, then almost immediately tried to print a page from the chromebook and the printer was offline. Going to the Cloud Print printer page and refreshing didn't change anything. About the dump the chromebook, go back to a Windows based PC.

Mom said...

After several frustrating days trying to get my cloud printer back online I found the problem. In my case I have a "classic printer" not a cloud enabled printer. So if the device connected to the printer via my network is offline so is my printer. I powered on the device and my cloud printer is back online. :)

Mom said...

If you are using a "classic printer" vice a "cloud printer" the device connecting your printer to the network must be online for the printer to be online.

KI time said...

If you have a WiFi Extender operating, it's WiFi network name will be slightly different than the original WiFi network name. If your computer is connected to the WiFi Extended network, and your printer is connected to the original WiFi network, the printer will appear to be offline WHILE you're connected to the WiFi Extended network. Try Reconnecting your computer to the original WiFi network 1st. You should once agian be able to print to your google icloud printer.

Kathy Dempsey said...

I think I've tried most if not all of the solutions offered here. NONE have worked. I'm resigned to the fact that if I want to print from my Chromebook, I MUST have my PC on and ready to print. Next computer will NOT be a Chromebook (esp. since now it's started to crash with the message OS is missing or damaged; takes DAYS to get it restored).

Charles Lamm said...

Set up 2 days ago and worked fine off chromebook. Unable to get back online.

Steve V said...

I've had this problem with my Canon MX920 for over a year. The fix was to periodically enter the following from the printer's control panel.

select menu -> webservices -> cloud services -> check for print jobs

That usually brought the printer back on-line in Chrome. However lately that doesn't work.

This DOES work (for me at least):
1. From Chrome, Print and select the printer which is "offline". The job is sent to GCP and will appear as "Queued".
2. From the printer control panel select menu -> webservices -> cloud services -> check for print jobs. This brings down the job and prints!

"It's only crazy if it doesn't work."

Steve V said...

Correction to the previously posted menu path on the printer control panel. Correct path is:

select menu -> webservices -> start cloud print -> Print from Google Cloud Print -> (Do you want to connect to the server and check for print jobs?) YES

Wesley Fryer said...

Thanks for this post. Your info about connecting via:

chrome://devices/

helped but was not everything I needed. I had to unregister my printer using it's local IP address in my web browser, then I could add it again. When it went offline again, connecting directly to it via IP address in a web browser fixed that and put it back online. Very strange. I wrote up more details on:
http://www.speedofcreativity.org/2015/10/26/google-cloud-print-offline-with-brother-mfc-j4420dw/

Jc Maxwell said...

I'm having the weirdest time with Google Cloud Print.

Executive summary: printer shows as "offline" when it isn't, but randomly shows up and prints through GCP at times.

My printer is a network model (Brother MFC-7440N) hosted on my home LAN, so it doesn't depend on a PC to act as its host.

Ordinarily, Google Cloud Print sees it as "offline" whenever I check from my Android phone, or a PC on the LAN.

But last night when I brought my laptop out of sleep mode, and started Chrome, suddenly a whole bunch of jobs I had submitted in the last week or so - which had all failed to print, because the printer was magically "offline" - suddenly started printing! What the...

FWIW, that particular Chrome install is one where I'm signed in to the gmail account that my MFC-7440N "belongs" to.

I'm similarly "signed in" to the Chrome browser on my Android phone, since the phone is tightly integrated into my Gmail account (email, calendar, etc.). One reason I started signing in to Chrome on my laptop was so that I could sync bookmarks and tabs with the Chrome instance on my phone.

I thought one of the main features of GCP was that printing would be independent of any particular PC. For a network printer, anyway. Obviously, a non-network printer would have to have its host PC up and running, or it wouldn't be able to receive any print jobs.

Greg Hill, Principal Tye River ES said...

That is an obscure Monty Python reference well done. Cheers!

Milan A. F. said...

The device check in Chrome doesn't work for me. But a simple router reboot does. I own a Canon Mx925

Jared G said...

No luck for me by just viewing the devices on my Toshiba Chromebook nor by pulling up the devices on my MacBook again. The only thing that has worked so far is deleting and then re-adding the printer. My printer is a Canon MP495 and the printer menu tools cannot be accessed easily. Any other solutions would be welcomed!

denny said...

thanks this worked

Michael Convey said...

This has been reported as a bug at the link below. To vote for it to get fixed, please go to the link and click the star icon near the upper left corner of the webpage. You need to be signed into your Google account to vote.
https://bugs.chromium.org/p/chromium/issues/detail?id=588462
Thanks.

Michael Convey said...

I'm giving up on the Canon MG7720. Although it is advertised as a Google Cloud Print Printer; after over 10 hours of troubleshooting, I cannot get it to work properly with my Dell Chromebox -- what an infuriating waste of time!!!! Canon should be charged with false advertising!!! I'm returning the MG7720. Please provide suggestions for a reasonably-priced, quality photo printer that works flawlessly with Google Cloud Print.

Paul Nurmi said...

Arthur 2 Sheds Jackson. Fabulous!

Unknown said...

That worked! Thanks for saving me the cost and effort of hiring IT help! Thank you!

Matt Butterworth said...

That worked for me! Sorted out my google cloud print offline problem! Thank you!

Michael Convey said...

Here's my Amazon review of the Canon MG7720 (which I returned due to Google Cloud print issues) This review discusses the printer I purchased instead (which is working flawlessly with Google Cloud Print):

https://www.amazon.com/review/RQ0ERVIKG9WFS/ref=cm_cr_rev_detup_redir?_encoding=UTF8&asin=B013C0ZY3C&cdForum=Fx3TJ4FJR8PAGAA&cdPage=1&cdThread=Tx3EI3TPV449LKF&newContentID=Mx2ANCO2R4BJ227&store=electronics#Mx2ANCO2R4BJ227

Revival said...

thanks worked for me..
chrome://devices..

i just registered the printer

thanks

Nancy Hasiuk said...

It isn't working for me :(

I have a fairly old printer that will print wirelessly from EVERY other program on my computer EXCEPT chrome. Your fixes didn't work. It still shows as offline, yet I printed from Chrome about a month ago. I'm confused and frustrated by it. I have to save everything I want to print to my desktop to print it, or switch to another program. This seems like an ENORMOUS issue. You would think that Google would finally remedy the situation :(

Sarah Simkins said...

Thank you, Todd. I love you! I'm bookmarking this post.

Mariah Jensen said...

Did not work me in the slightest.

AnnieM said...

Didn't work for me but I rebooted the printer and then it worked. Don't know for how long.

Garret said...

My Brother printer has gone offline twice in the couple years I have had it in such a way that none of the above posted advice helped. what has brought it back has been to go to the printer under the wifi / tcpip settings and see the IP address is, then go to the browser and access the page http://ip address - in the form 192.168.1.147 or whatever you have. then on that page you can select google cloud print and register the machine again.

Becka said...

My printer isn't even showing in the devices list so I can't remove and then add it again. When I go to the printer setup (IP address), it says it's already registered with GCP. I desperately need help to print!

Andrew Kersten said...

I fixed this issue by deleting the printer that I had inadvertently set up as a "classic" printer and set it up as a Google Cloud Printer. My printer, a Brother printer, had separate instructions for that. The link is here: http://support.brother.com/g/b/manuallist.aspx?c=eu_ot&lang=en&prod=mfcl2700dw_us_eu_as&flang=English&type3=459&type2=85

MammaBear2 said...

Just a couple of observations -- seems like lots of issues with primarily Canon printers. That is troubling. In fact, I see a few people with the same Canon Pixma MX922 that I am fighting with right now.

I bought the printer 14 days ago, had a nightmare install, and today was no different - another nightmare install. Today, the printer started messing with document formatting (arbitrarily adding page breaks and scaling pages) and there was no way to fix it. It became apparent that all I could do was delete the printer and reinstall it to fix whatever corruption was going on. And, so, the nightmare began again.

Briefly the installation that took me all day and all of my problem solving skills resulted in 3 problems consistent across both installations --
1) registration timed out multiple times because Canon's website fails to provide a clean handshake to finish registration before it all times out. I finally just took control and entered the DNS address manually to prevent timing out.
2) when registration succeeded, "printer offline" became the new issue. No idea what to do about that when the third issue revealed itself -
3) "unknown location"! Say What??

I manually edited what I could and saw only minor improvements until I finally gave up and ran the WLAN auto routine and amazingly it worked when that time when it had not worked before. All of this (printing problems followed by installation problems) screams programming bugs - something is not looping correctly. So, anyway, that's my take on things after 30 years of messing around with hardware and software and not loving it any more now than I did in the beginning. :)

Conclusions: repeated registration failures, "printer offline," and "unknown location" are ALL Canon issues and not Google Print issues. Google did what it was supposed to do and Canon didn't.

Best of luck to you all and I hope this information helps someone else.

charnish said...

Use Brother printer with Chromebook. Printer went offline and I just cannot bring it back online, no matter what directions I follow. Have gone thru Settings, Advanced Settings, Manage, sign into Google Acct but then don't get a selection of Printers. Brothers directions are woeful. HELP...........Carl

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