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  • Problems printing TurboTax return if you applied latest Windows patches

    Posted on April 14th, 2012 at 11:36 woody 16 comments

    I’m getting peppered from many directions about the bug in MS 12-025 / KB 2653638, the .NET security bulletin that Microsoft just released.

    If you didn’t take my advice, and you installed that patch, you won’t be able to print your TurboTax return.

    As the TurboTax people say, “You are unable to print returns or tax forms in TurboTax for Windows Basic, Deluxe, Premier, Home & Business, and Business after installing the latest Windows update.  You may briefly see a Generating Document message but the paperwork never prints.”

    This from Microsoft (thanks, SB!): “It seems the .Net Framework team has what they need and are tracking down the problem. It’s unclear how widespread this issue may be. So as a precaution, the .Net updates have been down-throttled (they will not be checked or install by default on consumer PCs). “

    In other words, the cow’s outta the barn…

    Taxes aren’t due until April 17, so I guess that gives you some breathing room.

    I hate to sound like a broken record, but you should NEVER automatically install Windows patches. (Except for spam filter updates and MSE definition file updates.) Never. That’s why I created this site years ago.

    I’m moving us up to MS-DEFCON 1: Current Microsoft patches are causing havoc. Don’t patch.

    P.S. I haven’t seen any official acknowledgment from Microsoft on their usual pages, including KB 2671605, which is supposed to document any known issues. The patch has been out for five days, guys….

    I’m reminded of the botched .NET patch that was pushed on Income Tax Weekend four years ago. It broke Quicken, which made it impossible for many people to get their taxes done.

    UPDATE: Thanks to reader Mike (in the comments) who notes that MS has finally updated the KB article that’s supposed to include a list of known problems. “We are currently aware of an issue with printing from a Windows Forms application. After the installation of these security updates, certain Windows Forms applications may not print, or may not honor specified printer settings when they do print. There is no impact on systems that do not use printing functionality from a .NET Framework Windows Forms application. The investigation into this issue is ongoing.” Funny, they don’t mention TurboTax.

    MORE UPDATES: TurboTax has a fix. Still nothing from Microsoft. Thanks for all of your comments here. I’m continuing the discussion over on the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. Join us! I think you’ll find the first comment (at the bottom) amusing. At least, I did….

     

    16 responses to “Problems printing TurboTax return if you applied latest Windows patches”

    1. KB 2671605 has been revised and now contains:
      “We are currently aware of an issue with printing from a Windows Forms application. After the installation of these security updates, certain Windows Forms applications may not print, or may not honor specified printer settings when they do print. There is no impact on systems that do not use printing functionality from a .NET Framework Windows Forms application. The investigation into this issue is ongoing.”

      That sounds like the TT printing issue if you ask me.

      I cringed when the install of TurboTax said it needed .NET, glad I followed your & Susan’s advise and held off on doing the .NET patches, haven’t finished my taxes yet.

    2. I am using Windows XP and am also having problems printing my Turbo Tax return. Does the latest patch affect Windows XP also? Is there some way around this? If I transfer my account to an older computer, would that work?

    3. @Daphne -

      As I understand it, the problem may (and I must say “may” because I don’t think anybody’s figured out the exact cause, just yet) affect any program that uses .NET – which means TurboTax on just about any Windows machine.

      If you haven’t yet applied this month’s updates to a different Windows machine, yes, I would definitely recommend that you transfer the files and see what happens. Keep me posted.

    4. @Daphne -

      There’s also a workaround, posted by MS: “print the content to a file on your computer instead of directly printing to a printer device. For example, print to a PDF, XPS, or any other supported format file. You can then open the file that you created and print directly from there.”

    5. For Turbotax, there’s a workaround that works easily for individual forms – hit Preview, which shows the form as a pdf, then you can hit Print and get that form.

      Not sure if that will work for the entire return – has anyone tried that?

      Pretty outrageous, by the way. Just wasted a long time rebooting and troubleshooting. A warning when I opened up Turbotax sure would have been nice. And outrageous on Microsoft’s part

    6. @Daphne -

      Intuit also list a workaround:
      http://turbotax.intuit.com/support/iq/Print-and-Save/Unable-to-Print-TurboTax-Return-After-Installing-the-Latest-Windows-Update/SLN61229.html

    7. Intuit/TurboTax is now reporting “This issue has been resolved in a recent TurboTax update released on 4/14/2012.”

    8. Hi Woody, Julie Miller from TurboTax. Updates were available today (Saturday, April 14) at about 1 p.m. PT. Given we’re close to the tax filing deadline, would be great to have you update your story so TurboTax users know they can now print their return directly from TurboTax vs. using the work around (saving to PDF and then printing). Thanks!

    9. Hmmm? Yeah. Got that problem, too. Try preview on the TTax print screen. The document should open in acrobat, or whatever reader you have. Then, print from the preview reader, since it is independent of TTax. Worked fine for me. One federal return and four states printed. Good luck.

    10. Woody,

      I believe that the defective .NET patch is KB 2656368, not KB 2653638.

      The better news is that TurboTax now has posted an update that addresses the issue.

      Thanks as always for your advisories.

      Regards,

      M.M.

    11. I think you get a free “I told you so” on this one!!

      B

    12. Adobe has just released an update for Adobe Reader. Related to this problem, or not?

    13. @RC -

      Doubt it. The problem isn’t with PDF – it’s with trying to print PDF forms using .NET…

    14. @Midnight -

      Heh heh heh.

    15. Susan Bradley in Windows Secrets Newsletter (paid) says the Adobe Reader update is related to Flash content and security. Not PDF printing through Reader.

    16. Looks like MS has put up a batch of hotfixes, one for each .NET update: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2671605 Haven’t tried them yet myself.

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