What is HPZinw12.exe?

The .exe extension on a filename indicates an executable file. Executable files may, in some cases, harm your computer. Therefore, please read below to decide for yourself whether the HPZinw12.exe on your computer is a Trojan that you should remove, or whether it is a file belonging to the Windows operating system or to a trusted application.

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HPZinw12.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with HPZinw12
HPZinw12.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as IEEE-1284.4-1999 Network Driver (Windows) belongs to software HP Dot4Net Windows or IEEE-1284.4-1999 Network Driver (Windows) by HP (

Description: HPZinw12.exe is not essential for the Windows OS and causes relatively few problems. HPZinw12.exe is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 61,440 bytes (53% of all occurrences), 65,536 bytes or 61,699 bytes. 
There is no file information. The program has no visible window. HPZinw12.exe is not a Windows core file. HPZinw12.exe is an unknown file in the Windows folder. HPZinw12.exe is able to manipulate other programs. Therefore the technical security rating is 47% dangerous; however you should also read the user reviews.

Recommended: Identify HPZinw12.exe related errors

Important: Some malware disguises itself as HPZinw12.exe, particularly when not located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the HPZinw12.exe process on your PC to see if it is a threat. We recommend Security Task Manager for verifying your computer's security. This was one of the Top Download Picks of The Washington Post and PC World.


User Comments

Started showing up after installing two new HP printers as network printers
  Andy Galloway  
Takes over the CPU, consumes 99% of processor time
  Chuck Koch  
Started showing up after installing HP 3310 printer as a network printer and consumes 99% of processor time
Device Polling program for HP printers. This program is activated when an HP printer has Device Polling activated, it sends alerts and device status to the computer. It is very annoying because it runs in the background, starting and stopping every few seconds. As far as I can tell, your printer will still function without it, but some alert messages might not be displayed.
  Jason Baker  
message error while closing XP : DLL initialysation failed
Showed up after installing HP Printer as network printer here as well. Remove printer, it goes away. It does, however, seem to lock up the computer's resources. Usually have to kill the process to get any work done.
This program is part of the HP printing drivers for some printers, the installations of which are now approaching 400MB, which is simply outrageous for a print driver. HPZinw12 seems to be prone to getting stuck in a loop and "running away" with 100% of your CPU power and the only way out is to ctrl-alt-del and kill the process, which does not seem to harm system stability.
  Max R.  
Also for me, this showed up after installing an HP network printer. Auto update app?
HP printer related, frequently uses 99% cpu
  Bill Mindur  
Same as others, this damn program eats up my CPU while its running. Had a difficult time dealing w/ it. Had to set my firewall to block it from starting. Tried HP for help and they were definately aware of the problem, but offered no real fix-only to uninstall and reinstall the software for my HP 2610 All in one. This is a typical HP problem, great product, but terrible, buggy software. Try setting your firewall to block this program.
  Brian Brooks  
It's a hewlitt packard printer component used w/wireless printers.
It is listed in services as pml driver hpz12, a service needed to print. Without it the following error results "HP All-in-One - Unable to Start Driver for Hpzi****.exe" HP PML Driver for HP’s Photosmart printers. PML stands for Printer Management Language and is an object-oriented request-reply printer management protocol where each PML object is associated with a unique piece of printer information while the PML commands specify the way the objects are accessed. From a layman’s perspective all you need to know is that PML is one of many printer control languages.
  John Ristaino  
I have this file on two different laptops and only one is reporting an error
HP printer file. Not dangerous, but is very buggy
Use task manager to end process, it will not destabilize system.
  Eric Snyder  
Installation of HP Printer Officejet 7410
  Randy Burnam  
I think it is a faulty driver from HP
  Giri Kowalke   (further information)
Showed up after installing HP Photosmart 3310 Drivers
  Charles Andrews  
HP Imaging Monitor and Update, for example if you have an HP PCS printer try to stop it and the process cpu usage will go down you have 3 processes to disable with msconfig at startup
  DesMo   (further information)
Takes over processor. Installed along with HP3310 network printer.
Installs with HP all in one printer software. sometimes goes into loop using all cpu.
  Larry Cole  
HP Dot4Net Windows
Found good info from HP website on how to reconcile
  Lee Beck  
It runs and ties up 100% of my processor on a laptop, too. HP Forum uses relate it directly to HP's printer management software. Forum users say HP Techs recommended disabling some HP software from starting. See Forum threads.
  Bo Petty  
Started Showing Up after installing HP Photosmart C5180 all-in-one printer on the network...uses very little percentage of Pentium II Processor...
HP Soft for Photosmart 3310 after install Wireless network
Definitely a printer file. definetly slows processes unless printer is on. HP can offer no solution. Some say remove software in msconfig, but why have it in the first place. This is incredible. Going to get my money back this afternoon.
  Trevor Blagg.  
A search of the HP website shows that it is used for scanning over a network connection. It maxed my processor out as well until I specifically let it throught the windows firewall as recommended by hp.
  engineer type  
Definitely related to an HP printer - HP Support Forums show no resolution to this badly-behaved software
  Dave Kingaby  
In my case, it loaded with HP C6180 printer software and showed itself as a post install problem when the HP software installed with Norton antivirus and/or internet security active. I resolved my problem by using the HP uninstall software option and then reinstalling the same HP printer software with Norton fully deactivated (ie. not just the anti virus part). I specified 4 hours for norton internet security deactivation. You have to ensure Norton stays inactive after the HP software restarts the PC. My HPzinw12 problem vanished. Task bar shows it active sometimes but not a hog.
I agree HPZinw12.exe uses 97%+ of CPU usage, but if diabled, printer does not work properly e.g. will only print 1st page of a 7 page document
network driver file
  Kabeer   (further information)
The HP printer Toolbox will not function here on XP without it.
Seems harmless, frequently uses up CPU cycles, needed for full HP printer/scanner/camera functionality, a good reason to call/write HP and complain about their abysmally buggy and bloated software
It takes over my processor, and there is no information about this problem on HPs site
  Mike G  
update to my previous post .. it still uses about 1% of my amd 6000+ every 4 sec, at least untill I turn the hp c7180 off.
Harmless HP driver but conflicts with Canon Digital Professional software, causing CPU hogging. The solution is to uninstall all HP Photosmart software and Canon Digital Photo Professional (not necessary to uninstall other Canon utilities). Then reinstall the Canon DPP *first*, followed by the HP software. Voila--no CPU problems.
  Liz G.  
gratuitous, duplicative, pointless piece of junk implemented by some tech happy HP nerd.
  GP duJour  
Very annyoying and doesn't seem to destablize pc by deleting it
I removed the file its located in the c:\windows\win32 folder. My CPU was using 100% to run this program now all is OK and my printers still work!
related to dot4net network driver - hp wireless printer; causes slow response when opening ms office files; slows extremely SAP; still not sure if the printer will function with dot4net.dll disabled
It tell me it can not start the installer. I just erased it after seeing it here. I hope that damn warning stops. A threat to your sanity.
  Daniel F.   (further information)
Definately process hog. Opens multiple network connections to printer on UDP port 161. I set mine to run in compatability mode for Windows2000 and the connections stopped. Programs seem to work fine and printer functionality has not been decreased. Definately eased the process hog for the moment.

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of HPZinw12.exe: based on 43 votes with 43 user comments. 14 users think HPZinw12.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. 10 users think it's probably harmless. 16 users think it's neither essential nor dangerous. 2 users suspect danger. One user thinks HPZinw12.exe is dangerous and recommends removing it. 7 users don't grade HPZinw12.exe ("not sure about it").

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Best practices for resolving HPZinw12 issues

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding problems with HPZinw12. This means running a scan for malware, cleaning your hard drive using 1cleanmgr and 2sfc /scannow, 3uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using 4msconfig) and enabling Windows' 5Automatic Update. Always remember to perform periodic backups, or at least to set restore points.

Should you experience an actual problem, try to recall the last thing you did, or the last thing you installed before the problem appeared for the first time. Use the 6resmon command to identify the processes that are causing your problem. Even for serious problems, rather than reinstalling Windows, you are better off repairing of your installation or, for Windows 8 and later versions, executing the 7DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.

To help you analyze the HPZinw12.exe process on your computer, the following programs have proven to be helpful: ASecurity Task Manager displays all running Windows tasks, including embedded hidden processes, such as keyboard and browser monitoring or Autostart entries. A unique security risk rating indicates the likelihood of the process being potential spyware, malware or a Trojan. BMalwarebytes Anti-Malware detects and removes sleeping spyware, adware, Trojans, keyloggers, malware and trackers from your hard drive.

Other processes

HPZinw12.exe [all]