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How to convert a local printer to a network printer?

by ubercool23 / May 16, 2013 3:32 PM PDT

I have a computer in my office connected to a network. The printer is attached with my system. I would like this printer to be available to the other PC down the hall. My printer does not have an ethernet port. Can I still share my printer. If yes, how?

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All Answers

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Re: network printer
by Kees_B Forum moderator / May 16, 2013 6:32 PM PDT

Just share it. Then from the any PC connected to the network you can print to it, provided this PC is turned on.

Printer sharing is standard in Windows. But since details might be different for different versions of Windows (like 98, ME, XP, Vista, 7, Cool I can't give an applicable link.


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converting a local printer to a network printer
by hebert123 / May 17, 2013 2:56 AM PDT

1. First make sure your computer is connected to your network.
2. If your printer is not currently connected to your computer, connect the USB cable between the computer and the printer.
3. Make sure your HP printer software is installed on your computer.
1. If your HP printer software is installed, use
Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7:
Start -> Programs -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
Windows 8:
• Launch the Printer Software from the Start screen (using the icon for your printer model) or from the tile named for your printer.
• Select (click or touch) Utilities on the top of the Printer Software screen
• Select Printer Setup & Software
• Select Convert a USB connected printer to Wireless
Mac OS X:
Open Finder and go to Applications -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
2. If your HP printer software is not installed on your PC, insert the printer software CD into your computer. If you don't have the CD, you can download software from
4. Select Convert a USB connected printer to wireless from Printer Setup & Software or from the Welcome Back screen from the CD.
5. Carefully follow the instructions on the software screens. If you see a software screen prompt instructing you to connect the USB cable and the cable is already connected, check the checkbox which says "the USB cable is already connected" and then continue.
6. The software may be able to automatically retrieve your wireless settings, which includes your network name and wireless password. If the wireless settings cannot be retrieved, you will have to pick your network name from a list of detected networks in your area and manually input your wireless password.
7. At the end of the process you will be instructed to remove the USB cable.
Note: The printer can be connected by a USB cable to a computer and also be connected to a wireless network. Both USB and wireless connections can be active and used at the same time. At the end of the conversion process, you may be given the option to either keep or delete the USB printer driver. If you choose to keep it, you will have two printer icons with the printer's model name in the computer's printer folder. One icon will be the printer originally installed and used over the USB connection. The second icon was just installed and should be used when using the printer over the network

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Oh what to do if there is not wireless?
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / May 17, 2013 8:24 AM PDT

Perhaps a line you should have started with is "If you have a wireless network in your office complex AND your printer is an HP, here is a long and complicated way to do what Kees_B did in the post above mine"


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(NT) Oh what to do if the printer is not wireless capable?
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / May 17, 2013 11:28 PM PDT
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Wireless printer is not necessarily required
by coffeejunkie / June 2, 2013 6:23 AM PDT

A network printer doesn't have to be wireless. It just need to be connected to the router in your wireless network.

With a network printer, newly purchased or with low-end retrofit as I suggested, there is less reason for not placing it right next to your router and be connected to it via an ethernet cable instead of wireless. There is a real advantage for a direct connection because an office microwave oven, depending on the power, can easily foul up your print job.

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My reply was made before you posted your suggestion,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / June 2, 2013 9:56 PM PDT

and I was commenting on the post by Hebert123 who made a big deal out of using a wireless printer, therefore I do not understand your post replying to mine


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Sorry! I replied out of sequence
by coffeejunkie / June 3, 2013 1:09 PM PDT

Right! Your reply doesn't apply to my post, I need to pay closer attention to the date of the posts or the indentation.

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by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / June 3, 2013 9:49 PM PDT
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copy work from others
by kamleshbvl / January 9, 2014 12:44 PM PST

Above is the copy paste work from HP site.

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Use a $55-$80 print server to free your printer from a PC or
by coffeejunkie / May 31, 2013 7:22 AM PDT

All the given solutions are based on a PC (or Mac) serving as a host to the printer. Print request from everyone in your office will go through this computer, slowing it down when there is a rush of printing jobs, like maybe at the end of the day. This makes the printer-connected PC unreliably slow for the person using it as a workstation. By the same token, if that same person starts a large upload to or download from Cloud Storage, or accepts an application or security software update, printing for everyone else will seriously slow down.

For about $55 to $80 you can get a dedicated print server that plays the part of the computer otherwise attached to the printer, and now every computer in your office can send jobs to the printer (now configured as a network printer), and the only bottleneck is the buffer size and speed of your printer. You connect your printer to your network, through an ethernet cable or Wifi.

An additional setup for your office computer is that the printer device driver has to be installed on everyone of your office computers. They would each format your document for the printer before sending it to the dumb print-server. In the PC-attached printer approach, that poor PC was doing it for everyone. The person doing the large print job pays the cost in PC slow-down himself/herself. It's only fair.

I've used such small print servers before. A search on Amazon tells you that brand name doesn't guarantee satisfaction. Read the reviews. However, if you leave the network setup on the previously printer-attached computer alone and name your new network printer by a different name, you have the ability to switch back to the old way just by connected the printer to the old computer USB(or printer) port instead of the print server's USB(or printer port). When your printer is connected through the PC, your network printer will appear to be offline. When it's attached to the print-server, your network printer will appear to be offline. An additional advantage of a print server is that they are so dumb they are not affected by virus.

These print servers are small and usually come with only one kind of printer port. Make sure you buy the right one for your printer.

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I wish this was a good deal.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 31, 2013 7:29 AM PDT

I picked up a newer better faster more capable amazing printer after asking my fellow moderators for ideas.

It was 129 bucks and was WiFi enabled. It's been great.

My neighbor needed a new printer and they has the adapter for years but it was time to let such be in the printer. They picked a newer better faster more capable more amazing printer after asking what I had and finding a newer model. They paid 129 bucks and are happy that there is less tinkering and more printing.

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We set ours, when we have to use the sharing method,
by mrmacfixit Forum moderator / May 31, 2013 11:14 AM PDT

to do all the heavy lifting on the machine that is sending the job and not on the host machine.


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not connected
by ubercool23 / June 11, 2013 9:10 PM PDT

My PC cannot detect the network printer down the hall although we are on the same network. The IP ADDRESS for my PC is and for the other PC is

What is the problem?

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Re: network printer
by Kees_B Forum moderator / June 11, 2013 9:18 PM PDT
In reply to: not connected

And what's the IP-address of the printer? Or is it a printer that is connected to that other PC?


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