What Is a Spooler Subsystem App?

By Chris Hoffman

The spooler subsystem app is a service included with Windows. This application runs in the background, managing all of the computer's print jobs.


Whenever a program sends a document to the printer, the spooler subsystem app adds it to the print queue. The print spooler service saves these print jobs in memory and sends them to the printer one by one when the printer is available.


Users can view the print queue when it's in use by double-clicking the printer icon in the system tray. You can pause or cancel print jobs in the spooler subsystem from the window that appears.


The spooler subsystem app appears as "spoolsv.exe" in the Windows Task Manager. The exact location of the file on the system is C:\Windows\System32\spoolsv.exe; programs with this name in other folders may be viruses.


Errors with the spooler subsystem app are often caused by incompatible third-party printer software. For example, if you have Lexmark printing software installed and you connect an HP printer to your computer, the Lexmark software can cause errors with the spooler subsystem app. Try stopping or uninstalling any third-party printer software if you encounter problems.