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Networking between Mac & PC & Printer

by dawajo / March 1, 2007 1:53 PM PST

I have cable modem service going into a Netgear WPN824 Router. With this router I've been trying to home network a Dell Dimension PC (running XP Pro), an IBM Thinkpad notebook (running XP Pro), an iMac (recent purchase), and an HP PSC2510 all-in-one printer. I'd like all three computers to be able to print to the HP printer; if necessary I can connect the iMac directly to the printer via USB cable (then use the computer to share the printer), but ideally would like everything to run through the router. I have had no problem getting internet access to all computers through this router, but the printer (and file sharing)? Yecch.

This doesn't sound impossible, and yet I've seemingly tried everything for many, many hours to no avail. Can anyone much smarter than I am give me a step-by-step on how to get this accomplished? Even if I can get this network setup like this, due to the Mac/PC thing can I have any hope that it will be stable for more than a day?

Many thanks.

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use Bonjour
by hate pc / March 1, 2007 2:18 PM PST

I have a similar setup. Connect your mac to your printer. On each pc, download Bonjour for windows (its free on apple's website - just google bonjour for windows), and it's very self explanatory from there. It works perfectly. Leave it to apple to straighten out windows networking mess. The only downside is that the mac has to be awake in order to print from any of the computers.


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Qs on Bonjour
by dawajo / March 1, 2007 2:56 PM PST
In reply to: use Bonjour

Thanks but having the iMac awake doesn't sound too convenient for us (there are stairs involved!). On but in standby is not OK? Do you know if the print jobs are held in a queue so that when the iMac wakes up the print jobs go through, or are they just lost?

If not, are there any other ideas out there to setup this network?

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by hate pc / March 1, 2007 11:44 PM PST
In reply to: Qs on Bonjour

I'm not sure of the difference between standby and sleep on the Mac. You can set the preferences to put the screen to sleep while still keeping the computer awake (under system preferences/energy saver). In this scenario the jobs will print and you still save screen life.
If you send a print while the Mac is asleep, it does save the jobs in a queue. It will not automatically print them when you awaken the Mac. You need to go into the printer software and tell it to resume the print jobs. (system preferences/print & fax/print queue...)
One more thing I forgot to mention, the Mac must be awake while running the setup wizard for Bonjour on your other computers, or the pcs won't be able to find the printer.
There probably are other ways to set this up. But just like you, I wasted hours trying to get Windows and my router software to do the job with no success. Bonjour had it working in minutes. And it's been reliable from day one.
Try it and post your experience. I doubt you'll be disappointed.

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by dawajo / March 2, 2007 2:27 AM PST
In reply to: Bonjour

As you predicted, it works great on my laptop. I just had to open up UDP port 5353 in order for it to work, and that was pretty easy if you just look around a bit within Windows firewall. Also as you predicted, the iMac needs to be awake. Tonight I will try the other PC; no reason to not expect success here as well. I've decided that a trip up the stairs when we want to print is much better than not being able to print at all, and climbing stairs has other benefits ...

Thanks for the info on Bonjour; it appears that you and Apple have solved my problem!

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