Windows – How to print XPS files?


My printer ran out of black toner and I didn’t have a spare, so I thought it’d be a good idea to “print” documents to .XPS files for now, then print them when the new toner arrives.

So, now I have my toner but I can’t work out how to print the files. I found this great post on Tim Barcz’s blog which seems to indicate I’m not alone.

I can open them and view them in IE, but if I try to print them it either ignores the command altogether or crashes.

I downloaded the XPS Essentials Pack from the Microsoft website and tried to install it, but it refuses to install and keeps crashing with a ten-page error message. Ironically, I would normally print this message out to deal with it.

My “solution” is to open the .XPS files in IE, then screenshot them and paste them into Paint Shop Pro so I can print them as graphics.

As Tim Barcz says in his post that I linked to:

That’s it…simple. What I don’t get is why people are so afraid to embrace new technology?

Best Solution

I have had no problems printing XPS docs from IE. The first thing that comes to mind is what OS are you running, what version of IE, are all service packs installed, etc?

Another option would be to copy the XPS files to a thumb drive (or send over the network) and print from another computer that does not have any issues.


Follow up questions...Can you print non-XPS docs? Have you restarted the printer? Is your print spooler messed up?

I have had many instances where I could not print due to a bad print job clogging the spooler. Restart the spooler or restarting your PC usually takes care of this issue.