How to Fix Windows Error: ‘Selected port cannot be deleted…’

Whilst mapping network printers today I came across an issue where printers had previously been mapped to the machine and print ports were being duplicated. Normally to delete ports you could follow these steps:

Go to Start -> Devices and Printers

Right click any printer and select Printer Properties

Head to the Ports tab, select the port in question then Delete Port

However, this was giving the error Selected port cannot be deleted. Access is denied.

This can be overcome by doing the following-

Go to Start then Run

Type regedit.exe then enter. Prepare for Windows prompts

Go to Computer -> HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> SYSTEM -> CurrentControlSet -> Control -> Print -> Monitors -> Standard TCP/IP Port -> Ports

From here, select and delete the entire directory that relates to the problematic printer port

Restart the Print Spooler service

Go to Start and search for and open Services

Scroll down the list to Print Spooler, right click and select Restart

You can now re-add printers using the deleted ports


  1. You are a genius…I’ve been trying to figure this out on several old printer ports that I needed to remove when they took away several of our network printers while I was on vacation…thank you very much!

  2. Thank you Jonny! My Dymo label printer decided to start throwing bluescreens on my Win 7 machine and I could not get anything to work, different port, new driver, add/remove, nothing was working! My system wouldn’t post if it was plugged in! Happy as a clam now…

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