Printers are an essential tool that helps us print documents, photos, and everything that we might need in the hard copy format. Typically, if you just use a single printer to get your documents printed you might not face the hassle of marking a printer default in your system.
However, in case you use separate printers to print separate types of documents, or your routine involves connecting to several printers very frequently, you might face the trouble and annoyance of Windows automatically picking up one of the last used printers as your default one.
Many times you do not even realize that you have sent a print command to the printer and then you again have to go through again the process of setting up the print properties and select a printer from the list that is currently connected to your system. Moreover, at times the print job continues to reside in the spooler and can start printing the job as soon as you are connected to that specific printer. Though the probability is less, there is a possibility.
Fortunately, setting a default printer in Windows 11 is a very straightforward process, along with that, there are multiple ways through which you can achieve, which can suit everyone’s needs and preferences.
Method 1: Set a Default Printer from the Settings App
One of the most convenient ways to set a default printer on your system is through the Settings app on your Windows device.
To do so, first, head to the Start Menu and click on the ‘Settings’ tile present under the ‘Pinned apps’ section to proceed. Otherwise, type Settings in the menu to perform a search for it.
Then, click on the ‘Bluetooth & devices’ tab present on the left sidebar of the Settings window to continue.
On the next screen, locate and click on the ‘Printers & scanners’ tile to proceed.
After that, on the ‘Printers & scanners’ settings screen, scroll down and locate the ‘Let Windows manage my default printer’ tile present under the ‘Printer preferences’ section. Then, click on the toggle switch present on the far right edge of the tile to bring it to the ‘Off’ position. Now windows, will not change your default printer automatically.
Once you have toggled off the automatic default printer selection, locate the list of printers present on the page, and click on the specific printer tile that you wish to set as the system default.
Then, on the printer properties page, locate and click on the ‘Set as default’ button to set the printer as the system default.
Method 2: Set a Default Printer from the Control Panel
Another way to set a default printer on your Windows system is through the Control Panel. Moreover, if you are not so comfortable navigating the Settings app, this method might suit you the best.
To set a default printer this way, first. head to the Start Menu and type Control to perform a search for it. Then, from the search results, click on the ‘Control Panel’ to open it.
Alternatively, you can also open Control Panel using the Run command utility. To do so, press the Windows+R keys together on your keyboard to bring up the Run command utility. Then, type Control in the text box and hit Enter on your keyboard to open it.
Next, on the Control Panel window, you will need to switch to the category view. To do so, click on the drop-down menu following the ‘View by’ option and click on the ‘Category’ option to proceed.
After that, from the category view, click on the ‘Hardware and Sound’ category to proceed.
Then, from the next screen, click on the ‘Devices and Printers’ option to continue.
Next, on the ‘Device and printers’ screen, locate the ‘Printers’ section and right-click on one of the printer options that you wish to set as default, this will reveal a context menu. Now, from the menu, click on the ‘Set as default’ option to set the specific printer as a default on your system.
Method 3: Set a Default Printer Using the Command Prompt
If hopping through menus and navigating to the Control Panel seems like a hassle to you, you can also set a default printer right from the Command Prompt. However, if you plan on using the method, make sure you have the complete name of your printer device as displayed in your system in order to set it as default.
To do so, first, head to the Start Menu and type Command Prompt to perform a search for it. Then, from the search results, right-click on the ‘Command Prompt’ tile to reveal a context menu and then click on the ‘Run as administrator’ option to launch Command Prompt.
After that, a UAC (User Account Control) window will appear on your screen. If you are not logged in with an admin account, enter the credentials for one. Otherwise, click on the ‘Yes’ button to proceed.
Then, on the Command Prompt window, type or copy+paste the command mentioned below and hit Enter on your keyboard to execute the command.
Note: Replace the <Printer name> placeholder with the actual printer name installed on your system.
rundll32 printui.dll, PrintUIEntry /y /g /n "<Printer name>"
There you go folks, hopefully, using this guide, you will be able to set a default printer on your Windows 11 PC.