How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing
How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing – Introduction
Wireless printing is easy to set up and can be performed very quickly once you know how.
Some may find the thought of tackling the job of setting up a wireless printer more than a little daunting and think that it can only be performed by a PC tech but there really is no need to worry – we tell you all you need to know and detail in easy steps the process of setting up wireless printer sharing on your home wireless network.
This guide assumes that you have some form of wireless printer or purchased one of the wireless all in one printers on offer today.
If you do not already have a wireless printer there are ways to make a printer wireless by using a wireless printer adaptor – visit our article on this site for more information.
Wireless networks have now become the most popular way to set up a home network and an obvious development of this is to provide wireless connection to your printer so that you can share it easily but without the need for unsightly Ethernet or USB cabling trailing around your house and home.
Using an existing PC as a print server is easy and straightforward but if you want to print from another networked PC or Laptop then the PC with the printer attached needs to be switched on which can be a real nuisance in a home setup where you may not wish to leave it on all the time.
Some printers offer connection to your network via an Ethernet cable connected between your printer and router and this is a better option allowing all on your home network users access to the printer but for all simplicity and neatness with no extra wires to get in the way the wireless printer route provides the best all round solution.
Now, for wireless printing to be shared between all devices on your home network, both wired and wireless, you will need to have a wireless router installed as the basis of your network.
Wireless printers can be accessed directly using the ‘ad-hoc’ mode if you don’t have a wireless router but you will need each PC or Laptop to have a wireless adapter installed in order to do this.
How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing – Location, location!
Decide on a good location for your wireless printer.
Even though your printer has wireless capability you will want to locate it reasonably close to your wireless router for the best signal strength, speed of operation and resistance to any interference which could slow down the communication between your wireless router and wireless printer.
Similarly you will want to position your printer in a convenient location for everyone to access it easily.
Once sited, you will need to setup the wireless printer itself.
Now, some models are configured directly on the printer itself using the LCD display and selector keys – others require you to load up software or are configured via a web browser.
For the purposes of this tutorial we will be using an Epson SX515W as our example wireless all in one printer.
Ok, let’s get to it :)
How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing – Step 1
First off we need to configure the printer itself. Turn the printer ON and then, using the keypad, select the ‘Setup’ button to access the setting up menu.
From here navigate to the ‘Network Settings’ section using the arrow keys and press ‘OK’.
Now select ‘Wireless LAN Setup’ and press ‘OK’.
Then select ‘Advanced Setup’ followed by ‘Manual Setup’ and press ‘OK’ to proceed with setting up your wireless connection manually.
You will now be presented with a choice of ‘Infrastructure Mode’ or ‘Ad-Hoc’ mode.
To join our home wireless network we will choose ‘Infrastructure Mode’ and click ‘OK’ again.
You will now have a list of options, choose ‘Search SSID’ and a list of available networks will be displayed.
Select your own home wireless network SSID (the name given to your network when you first set it up).
After selecting you will be presented with a choice of security settings, None, WEP 64 and 128 bit or WPA - hopefully your network is secured using WEP or WPA encryption (it is now isn’t it?!).
Select the one that matches your home network settings and then enter the code using the Alphanumeric or Hexadecimal input as required by using the printer keypad arrow keys.
You should now get a confirmation from your printer that you are connected to your home wireless network and the Active Wireless Signal Indicator will be illuminated.
If not check that you have entered the correct SSID, security type and code.
At this stage you have connected you wireless printer to your wireless router and have been allocated an IP address.
How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing – Step 2
Now your printer has had an IP address allocated we need to go to each PC or Laptop on our home wireless network and add your printer.
For Windows 7 users go to ‘Start’, and on the right hand side of the window select ‘Devices and Printers’.
Now select ‘Add a printer’ from the top left of the window and in the ‘Add Printer’ window select ‘Add a network, wireless or Bluetooth printer’.
Windows will now search for all available printers.
Select your printer and then click on the ‘Next’ button.
You will now be prompted to ‘Install the printer driver’ and Windows will present you with a list of printer manufacturers and their printers.
Either select yours from the list if it is present by clicking on the manufacturer and then selecting your printer model number or tell Windows that you ‘Have Disk…’ if it is not listed.
If this is your main PC and you have already connected this printer via a USB cable and loaded in the driver then Windows will recognize this and ask you if you wish to ‘Use the driver that is currently installed (recommended)’.
You will now be presented with a dialog box where you can type in the Printer name.
Add the printer name or use the one already allocated and click the ‘Next’ button.
You will now need to configure the ‘Printer Sharing’.
Use the suggested name or type in a new one.
Note that this name will be visible to all other users on your home wireless network and therefore should be easy to identify.
Click ‘Next’ and then, if you wish, you can set your printer as the default printer by clicking in the tick box and also you can ‘Print a test page’ if you wish then click on ‘Finish’ to complete installation.
How to Set Up Wireless Printer Sharing – Step 3
Repeat Step 2 for all of your PCs, Laptops and Notebooks etc connected to your home wireless network for which you wish to give access to your wireless printer.
That’s it! We’re done :)
For Windows Vista users just follow the same procedure but access by going to ‘Start’, ‘Control Panel’, ‘Hardware and Sound’, ‘Printers’ and then select ‘Add a Printer’.
For Windows XP users again follow the same procedure but access via ‘Start’, ‘Control Panel’ then ‘Printers’.
Sharing can be set by right clicking on the installed printer and then selecting ‘Properties’ then click on ‘Sharing’ and add a tick to the ‘Share this Printer’ option and click on ‘Apply’ then ‘OK’.
That’s it; you’re all set to share your printer wirelessly.
We hope you have found this article has given you all the information you need to set up wireless printer sharing – if you should have any suggestions or additions etc please use the ‘Contact Us’ page to inform us and we will do our best to incorporate these.
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