How to disable parallel port driver service in case you don't have any parallel ports

I migrated some Windows 2003 guests from Xen virtualization into KVM. Apparently Xen provided virtualized parallel ports to the guest, since starting up the Windows guest in KVM complains about the missing parallel port. The exact error is a popup (appearing before even I logged in) telling me that "at least one service or driver failed during startup". After login I see in Event Viewer the following error: "The Parallel port driver service failed to start due to the following error: The service cannot be started, either because it is disabled or because it has no enabled devices associated with it."

The solution is documented in the suggested Microsoft KB article. It says it's only for Vista or Win2008 based computers, but the method works for XP, 2003, etc. too. The strange thing is that I've checked a notebook that has Vista Home ed. on it and no parallel ports, and the startup type of the Parport service was set to "3" (as in my Win2003 guest that complained). Shock Thus there must be some other way that Vista knows about not having any parallel ports in the machine and therefore issues no popup error messages. However disabling the Parport service alltogether works too.

Note that on Win2003 (and most probably on XP, Vista, Win7, Win2008, etc. too) you can disable the parallel port driver service with a command too (thus you don't have to dig into the registry ... which has it's risks if you're not careful). Execute the following in a command prompt:
sc config parport start= disabled

The space between "start=" and "disabled" is important!


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Thank You

Thank you for your post - this was exactly my situation. Goodbye Xen, Hello Hyper-V!

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