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Thread: Networking a Printer

  1. #1
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    Networking a Printer

    I have 3 computers, A PC with Win 2000, A PC with Win XP Pro and a laptop with XP Home (I think). I have the printer connected to the Win 2000 PC and I tried to Network the Printer but the XP computers don't see it. Is there a way to have it on the Network without have the PC's on and being able to print from the Laptop. The laptop is the only wireless computer of the three.

    thanks, Pete

  2. #2
    If you want to be able to use the printer without a dedicated computer being turned on (I think that is what you're going for?), you'll need a print server.

    Here's one:
    http://www.compusa.com/products/prod...ct_code=306547

  3. #3
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    I second Steven's recommendation.

    I have been using a Netgear print server with my Epson printer for going on 8 years. Our house is wired for ether net throughout, and the print server just sets on the network waiting for some one to send it a TCPIP packet.

    Stop by your local compusa or Fryes and pick one up.
    Best Regards, Ken

  4. #4
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    There sometimes is a little, umm...problem...with XP machines and Win3K machines playing nice on the network, even when you have everything set properly. I think you're getting bit by that. The print server idea that Ken and Steven mention is one good solution. The other would be to upgrade the Win2K machine to one of the XP versions.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    There sometimes is a little, umm...problem...with XP machines and Win3K machines playing nice on the network, even when you have everything set properly. I think you're getting bit by that. The print server idea that Ken and Steven mention is one good solution. The other would be to upgrade the Win2K machine to one of the XP versions.
    Steve and Ken thanks for the reply, looks like a good cheap solution. Didn't know it would be that easy.

    Jim, The 2000 PC was upgraded from Win 98 and is a little too slow for XP. The 2000 PC will/maybe get phased out this fall. Thanks for the reply. Looks like a print server is the way to go.

  6. #6
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    I still run a 2000 machine for the same reason and the print server will be your best solution for your mixed OS environment. All your devices should talk to the printer via IP if not to each other. Enjoy.

  7. #7
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    I agree with the print server piece. I actually have XP Home on LOML's office computer, with the printer attached to it. I'm on a Win2K unit, and it does print. But I had to get the computer guru at work to come set it up, and he had trouble. When I had 2 machines on Win98, I was able to set it up myself with little or no problem. Lou, computer guru, thought the issue was the XP Home, not XP Pro. Jim.
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  8. #8
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    Glenn and Jim,

    thanks for the reply. I think I'm gonna try a print server.

  9. #9
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    Hello,
    Try this:
    Right click on network neighborhood and select properties.
    Right click on local area connection and select properties.
    Under the general tab, select Internet protocol - TCP/IP - highlight it and select properties.
    Click on advanced and select the WINS tab.

    Under the NetBIOS setting, change from the default to:
    Enable NetBIOS over TCP/IP.
    Hit Ok - Ok and Ok.

    The problem of finding services on a small home Lan is the lack of a local DNS or WINS server that knows the NetBIOS name of services.

    Windows for Workgroups 3.11, Win95, Win98 and to a lesser degree, Win2000, are based on core technology that uses broadcast protocols (NetBEUI / NetBIOS). XP, Pro, home of media edition, have gotten away from it to a large degree. Vista has done away with it ~ 90 or so %.

    The four easiest ways to aid comminication in a mixed enviorment using TCP/IP:

    - A WINS server. Not practical for a home LAN since you'd need to add a Win2K or 2K3 server.
    - An LMHOSTS entry. Not practical simply beacuse it's confusing for a non-geek to do, and in a larger enviorment, it means going from machine to machine.
    - Enable NetBIOS over TCP/IP. Fairly easy for a non-geek, but, in a large enviroment it can (and will) increase traffic on the LAN by up to 60%.
    - Add NetBEUI protocol. Seldom if ever a good idea. Usually only done as a last resort if there's a DOS and/or Windows 3.1(1) or NT 4.0 machine that has to comminicate and no other options available.
    (I believe I have 2 or 3 DOS/Windows 3.11 machines that are still in use. They run special software packages that are tied to the hardware & software the customers are running and can't be replaced..well,,they can,, but at a cost of several hundred thousand dollars)

    By default, XP is supposed to enable NetBIOS over TCP/IP unless otherwise specified - but - like most other MS "great ideas", it only works that way part of the time.

    Even if you add a print server to a home LAN, "locking down" the NetBIOS setting is still a good idea.
    Last edited by Rich Engelhardt; 07-29-2007 at 7:28 AM.
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  10. #10
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    Hi Rich. AFAIK, I am all TCPIP. With the software provided by the print server, I assigned a name and IP address 192.168.1.8 to the print server. All the devices behind my stand alone firewall are 192.168.1.x. Then on each of my computers I went to windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts and defined the name given to the print server name and IP address. From there you go to the add printer page and define the printer. You are done. Oh yes, it does take a reboot to get the new etc\hosts entry active before you define the printer.

    It has been a couple years since I did it, so I may have forgotten a step.
    Best Regards, Ken

  11. #11
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    Be aware that there can be issues with some printers and those print servers. They are usually fine if the printer is a decent one that supports PCL or Epson high level code. The really basic ones that rely mostly on the PCs CPU and having a bi-directional connection to the printer may not work. Also, forget the scanner etc functions.

    There is no reason you cant network printer in a mixed windows environment, although there may be gremlins that make life difficult. Try using explorer to search for the name of the PC with the printer connected and shared. That will often find it even if you cant browse the network to it, then you can locate the shared printer and right click to connect. Also check if you are running a firewall, if thats configured as high security (often the default) it will block file and printer sharing.

    Cheers

    Ian

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Abraham View Post
    Be aware that there can be issues with some printers and those print servers. They are usually fine if the printer is a decent one that supports PCL or Epson high level code. The really basic ones that rely mostly on the PCs CPU and having a bi-directional connection to the printer may not work.
    That is true. An easy way to tell, is what is listed on the box for compatible operating systems. If it is only compatible with Windows, this implies that it is controlled partly by the computer, and it likely won't work on one of these print servers. If it is compatible with Mac and/or Linux, than it likely does all the work on it's own, and will work on a print server. This isn't a guaranteed method, but is a pretty good indicator.

    Several people are giving advice on how he can get it to work despite his mixed OS network. If I understood his original post correctly, he wanted a way to be able to print to the printer even if all the other computers (other than the laptop) were turned off. The only way he is going to be able to access the printer without it being connected to a computer that is turned on is if he uses the print server method, or gets a printer with a built in NIC...

  13. #13
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    Thanks for all the replies so far. Lots of good info. My printer is a HP PSC 2350. Not sure when I'll get a chance to go and get a server but I give the other stuff a try.

  14. #14
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    You can probably print to one of those via a network print server, but you wont be able to scan or use the card readers. If you connect via a host PC then at least you can do those functions on the host PC, but usually not on the networked ones.

    Cheers

    Ian

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Abraham View Post
    You can probably print to one of those via a network print server, but you wont be able to scan or use the card readers. If you connect via a host PC then at least you can do those functions on the host PC, but usually not on the networked ones.

    Cheers

    Ian
    Ian, Thought you were a night owl until I saw where you were from. I'm liking the print server idea less and less as I hear the drawbacks. Thanks for the reply. Do you guys in New Zealand get the same stuff we get from manufactures? Don't think I'll ever get to visit there in this lifetime.

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