Technology & InternetSolving Error 0x00000709: “Can’t Set Default Printer” Problem

This article talks about how to solve error 0x00000709 that arises when you are unable to set the default printer in the Windows operating system.


I recently had a troubleshooting appointment for an Epson all-in-one printer that could not be set as the default printer. When I tried to make it the default, a message box came up saying "operation could not be completed error (0x00000709)”. Other than that, it seemed to work fine. I even removed all the printer software through “Programs And Features” in the Windows control panel followed up by a Windows system registry scan. I then performed a clean install of the Epson printer software – still no joy.

Next, I began to research the "operation could not be completed error (0x00000709)” error message on the internet. I came across a variety of solutions, which I tried in succession with no luck. I finally discovered the one that worked. It was a simple fix to the Windows system registry. This is what I did to solve the annoying little problem:

I.      Type “regedit” followed by the enter key in the “search program and files” text box in the pop up menu that appears after clicking the Windows “start button” in the lower left hand corner of the Windows desktop screen.

II.      Next, click “HKEY_CURRENT_USER” in the left hand pane of the Windows registry editor.

III.      Then click “Software” followed by “Microsoft” and next “Windows NT”.

IV.      While under the “Windows NT” entry, click “CurrentVersion” and then “Windows”.

V.      Now, one of the entries you should see in the right hand pane is “Device”. If the value for “Device” as noted under the “Data” area is anything other than the printer you are using, then highlight “Device” in the right hand pane with the mouse and press the delete key to remove it.

VI.      Restart the computer so it starts with the altered Windows system registry.

After the Windows desktop appears again, you should be able to go into the “Printers” area and designate your printer as the default without receiving the "operation could not be completed error (0x00000709)” message.

Being able to designate the default printer can save you a fair amount of work over the long run. This is because you won’t have to specify your destination printer in the printer dialog box – it is already selected since it’s been set as the default.

Personally, I think these printer software vendors should be doing a more thorough job of removing these erroneous entries in the Windows system registry when their software is being uninstalled. They can’t seriously expect people without IT or computer repair backgrounds to be able to interpret arcane error messages and know how to proceed to a solution. Even most IT professionals would have to go online and research the solution so they could solve it themselves.

That said, this remedy is still fairly simple as long as you are careful not to change anything else that could potentially cause other serious problems with the Windows operating system.



0_cdhk-hmh59ujeetrbumc-cyhfnxxhitrvopr-_7s4pw7c7nkui4eyirnd408w28p9aosjxaalmee?2012Computer Program Designer Douglas Miller (LION)DOUGLAS B. MILLER, COMPUTER PROGRAM DESIGNERPC Troubleshooter And Software Developer


simona ssimona snot able to delete the device

hey, I did everything like you said but I've got a problem with deleting the "device", it says "unable to delete specified values", any idea what I can do with it? thanks

Sarah SapunganSarah Sapungan

You should change the permissions. Go to "File" then "Permissions" then check the "allow". This I also did the above instructions, but I can't delete the last part, I look for another blog then I was able to set the default printer after restart.

Note: I did not actually delete the "Device". I just delete the date on it. I click modify then delete my past default printer. :)

Carl  LunodCarl Lunod

thank you po ate i got it

Venus GadianoMiascoVenus GadianoMiasco

To mam sarah sapungan... helo mam can i ask where can i find the Files that u r imparting mam? Pls help me i am also encountering printer default problem right now.... hope u will respond to my query asap.... thank you mam.

Shahid HussainShahid Hussain

Thanks Sarah for the suggestion. Worked for me

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Arlyn  MoralejaArlyn MoralejaThank you

Thank you for sharing this solution. This was also my problem before. I followed the instructions and it really works. Thank you. Thank you.

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John MailleJohn MailleHi Idelated the key

and I still cannot set my default printer

sumit  bhatisumit bhati

In the last menu of "Device" it shows that cannot editing the value . How can i fix this

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Keith ArroyoKeith ArroyoFixed my Issue, Thanks a ton.

On my Win7 pc, deleted the key and the value.
I had to change permissions of the "Windows" tab to FULL access before I could delete the "Device" key. Right click on "Windows" tab to get to permissions. Thanks again.

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Himanshu PatidarHimanshu PatidarAwesome, just one more doubt to make it perfect

Hi Douglas,
It did work.
All i needed to do is allow permissions and them edit values.

But i have a problem now that when i have set printer 1(HP deskjet 2510) as default i am unable to set other printers default from control panel neither can i use other printers to print via excel or adobe reader.
Say i want to print using my Printer 2(Foxit reader) or (printer 3)One note. I am shown the 0x00000709 error.
But printing with printer 1 (Hp deskjet 2510) works great(i really appreciate your support for it)

Now, how can i keep printer 1 as default but use other printers to print via excel occasionally as and when needed without facing error 0x00000709 ???

I really think you can help me with this.


Pro GnoeyPro Gnoey

Fantabulous, Awesome. It works at all.
This method saves me a lot of time.
The solutions from this forum attract me to join explore B2B. Thanks.

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Emma SteuerEmma SteuerI've done all the steps, device isn't there.

Hi, I've gone to regedit and done all the steps up to step V., however, on the right hand pane there are only 2 things and all they say are "(Default)" and "UserSelectedDefault". I don't see anything that is the name for my printer... am I doing something wrong..? Or did I misinterpret? What do I do?
Thank you!
P.S. sorry if my question is dumb I'm only 14 :). Also, the printer I am dealing with is a Dell Photo AIO Printer 926.

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Rathish JebastionRathish JebastionThank You..........:)

Its working, thanks a lot

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Kamran AliKamran Aliunable to delete DEVICE vlaues

Good day to all,
i tried to delete data in DEVICE as per details mentioned above but unable to delete specified values.could you kindly let me know how to delete and then re-enter the data for new printer.
For your kind info i have old printer data still exist in DEVICE contents,now got new printer HP laserjet professional M1132 MFP.
Awaiting your kind and positive response.
Best regards

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