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Printing possible through wireless network?

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9 replies to this topic

#1 smokehouse



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Posted 22 February 2008 - 01:44 PM

Hello! I have a Dell PC connected to a HP5610 printer/scanner/fax with internet service through comcast and life is good. I've recently acquired an Apple ibook laptop, so I purchased a Linksys WRT54G wireless router for use with the laptop and life is still good. My question is can I print from the laptop through the same HP printer wirelessly, and if so, how? I have software for Mac with the printer. Thanks in advance!!

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#2 Samurai Appliance Repair Man

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 03:18 PM

Your iBook should automatically pickup the wireless router if you have Airport enabled. If the printer if connected to the router (through a USB cable) then you should be printing out the next Great Ameedican Novel Mac-style!

#3 smokehouse



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Posted 22 February 2008 - 04:00 PM

With all due respect, master; there is only one USB port on the printer and it has to go to the PC, correct? (Please forgive my ignorance!)

#4 Budget Appliance Repair

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Posted 22 February 2008 - 08:39 PM

The USB plug that goes to the printer from your computer needs to be plugged into the router, not the computer.

I believe that is the method to make your printer a network printer.

With the printer plugged into the router, any computer that is accessing your network should then be able to print to the one network printer attached to the router.

I don't really know that much about networks, but from the little I do know, I believe that is correct.
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#5 zentec



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Posted 23 February 2008 - 02:56 AM

There is more than one way to skin a cat.  Which method you use depends upon your particular tastes.

The less attractive, but cheapest method of printing to that printer is to simply share the printer connected to the Dell PC.  Windows will permit you to share the printer and give it an appropriate name for the network share.  Your iBook will print to Windows shared printers.

Advantage:  Cheap.  Nothing to buy.

Disadvantage:  Your Dell computer has to be running in order to print.  Even at 40 watts, that's a fair amount of electricity throughout the year for the thing to be sitting idle.  It's a bit of work to get working.

A better way is to buy a wireless print server such as the Netgear WGPS606.  These things are surprisingly cheap; I watch for sales on them and have bought them for $50 at retail stores.  What makes these things awesome is that they work wonderfully as a wireless bridge, something that similar devices cost $120.  Instead of dropping a $100 on some proprietary wireless USB device for a Tivo, or an Xbox, I use one of these.  Better still, they're a print server in every sense of the word.  It supports IP printing to USB printers such as yours, and Bonjour has no problems working through it. 

Advantage:  Uses a hint of electricity, great wireless bridge, works great with OS X.  Supports USB printers, full IP printing.  Relatively cheap.

Disadvantage:  It's a royal pain in the neck to configure it for the first time without Windows.  If you use Windows and the setup CD, you'll be running in 5 minutes.  If you try to snub your nose and use your iBook and web browser, have the asprin handy.  And you'll need to reconfigure your Dell to use it (which the setup software does do).

Finally, the primero method is to just buy an Apple Airport Extreme 802.11n wireless access point, slam the USB cable for the printer into its USB port and tell your iBook to find the damn printer.

Advantage:  You have your cake and eat it too.  It's sexy, it's cool.  You'll be your neighborhood's latest drinker of the Apple Kool-Aid.  I take mine with a hint of mint and a little rum on the weekends.

Disadvantage.  Cost.  You already have an access point.  And you'll need to reconfigure the Dell to work with that.

#6 Pegi



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Posted 23 February 2008 - 03:11 AM

I have two desktops here and a laptop....my Dell desktop and my HP Laptop are connected thru a network, the laptop fed thru a wireless router that is fed by my Roadrunner Cable Modem...My Business pc that is now here also is not connected to this network.... my Printer is connected to the Dell Desktop system by usb, this Dell is  networked with the HP Laptop so if I select print from either the Dell desktop or the HP Laptop the one printer will print out the doc.....remember the desktop, or whichever unit the printer is attached to, has to be turned on for the printer to work thru that pc...example, if you are on the laptop and the printer is attached to the desktop the desktop must be on for the printer to work from either that desktop or the laptop...but these two must be set up on a network for this to work....at least here with my systems.....if I need something printed from this business pc I am on now I just e-mail it to the Dell and print it on out that way...I am not aware of attaching a printer direct to a modem or wireless router but there sure is a lot I do not know....all of this was explained to me and set up here in my home by the Geek Squad at Best Buy, so I would suggest talking to them about your options for your systems...;)

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#7 smokehouse



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Posted 24 February 2008 - 01:25 PM

Thank you all very much for your suggestions!! Will tackle that problem after I get the oven working!!:D

#8 volleyball



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Posted 21 March 2008 - 05:59 AM

Netgear make a usb port wireless router as well as a wireless switch with printer port. Belkin has a network usb sharing device to help accomplish the same thing. You have to make sure your printer ca handle being on a print server. Some need the computer to generate more of the print than others and if your is a scanner, sometimes that won't work.
I suggest to people with a high speed internet to get a network printer, that is the easiest way to share a printer

#9 matty1stop



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Posted 15 April 2008 - 02:15 AM

Here is a decent guide on how to share the printer on your primary PC to PC's on your network.  (assumes XP OS)

Doing it this way your primary PC (the one the printer is connected to) would need to be turned on in order to print.


Hope this helps,


#10 delawaredrew



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Posted 31 May 2008 - 02:48 AM

If you have a printer that requires bi-directional communication you'll have a few problems.  Many printer/scanner fax combos will require the ability to report their status back to the comp.  Some print servers allow this for some printers.  I tried to use a 500GB network drive/print server combo to achieve this but I have never gotten it to work for my HP 5610 printer and two laptops running XP.  Mixing a Mac into it makes it more complex.  I just carry the laptops into the office and plug right into the printer, but I don't print often so the minor inconvenience is ok.  I haven't used an Apple regularly since the IIe so maybe a mac user will have a better solution.

Also there may be new products out since I last tried to get it to work.  As Macs have gained market share, products to allow a windows/mac mixed network have been coming to market.  Don't know if you can share a printer between your dell and mac by setting up sharing on the windows machine.

As far as I know there is no way to do it sans computer without a new piece of equipment; you'll need either a print server or a network (wired/ethernet or wi fi) printer to use a printer with a router.  I have the same router and printer.  There is no USB on my router.  The USB  port on my modem is for direct wired connection to a comp.
Network (wi fi) printers:

Print servers:

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