Microsoft Cloud Printing Service Enters Preview

Printer

Remember the name, Universal Print. This is the cloud printing service that Microsoft has been developing for a while. And it has now entered a private preview.

The company shared the details in an announcement.

And, well, the service does exactly what it sounds like. That is, eliminating the need for on-premises print servers, or even require the installation of printer drivers on your PC.

It basically takes the Windows Server print functionality and moves it to the cloud, with Microsoft christening the resulting product as its Universal Print Service.

Universal Print

Administrators can now basically view all of their Universal Print printers through a dashboard on Azure, and they can manage the printers accordingly. Nothing changes for the end users, though. From their perspective, the change is seamless, and they can print as they always have.

The software titan is, as you may have guessed, targeting its new cloud printing service at Microsoft 365 commercial and education customers.

Organizations can centrally manage printers that are connected to their Windows 10 devices joined via Azure Active Directory. A Universal Print proxy application connects printers to the service.

Microsoft claims that you will need a printer that supports Universal Print to get the best experience, though as of this writing these don’t exist. The service just entered a preview, after all. And that too, a private preview.

But if you are interested in using it, you will need to be running Windows 10 Enterprise or Windows 10 Education, version 1903 or later. And, of course, you will also need to be an Azure AD tenant.

One thing is for sure, though.

We have come a long way from the fussy and messy days of tinkering with printers and their drivers.

Those were the day!

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