WiFi Printing Solutions for
Home and Small Business Networks
Printers have come a long way since the early days, when getting the print out meant tearing off a sheet of green bar paper in the print room, so you could check the output of your latest program changes.
Now days printers effortlessly stream data and images through the air using WiFi Technology, which has quickly become the most popular transfer method to print graphics and data.
Since the WiFi printing propagation has began, many varieties of WiFi printers have been showing up in the market place, and can be a little confusing for someone who is new to the wireless arena.
Just relax; Wireless Home Network Made Easy is here to cover all the basics of WiFi printers, and to teach our viewers about the different ways they can print wirelessly.
Whether you’re setting up a new wireless all in one printer, or trying to make a printer wireless that’s been around the office since the first day of business, WHNME will show you the way!
Let’s Get Started:
Regardless of which brand of printer has become your personal favorite, there are 2 basic ways you print wirelessly.
- Adding a fully enabled WiFi printer to your network. Meaning, the wireless functionality is built directly into the printer itself, and contains an internal 802.11a/b/g or /n wireless adapter.
- By converting your wired printer into a wireless network printing device, using either a USB Print Server, Wireless Router Print Server, or Wireless Printer Adapter Kit.
WHNME is going to cover each of these WiFi printing techniques, so you can understand which technology is the correct choice for your wireless home network.
Adding a WiFi Enabled Printer:
Wireless Printers allow WiFi enabled devices to connect directly with them, in the same way wireless computers connect with wireless networks.
To setup wireless printing the WiFi printer must support Wireless Direct technology, or you can setup a WiFi Ad Hoc Network connection on printers which do not support wireless direct connections.
When using the Wireless Direct procedure all wireless devices; laptops, smart phones, tablets, etc. must have the printers wireless software agent installed to establish the WiFi connection.
Wireless direct printers can support up to 5 simultaneous WiFi connections, and also be connected to your wireless home network at the same time.
Printers that are wireless direct enabled are a nice addition for large families which contain various types of wireless enabled devices and are active in social networking environments.
Converting a Wired Printer to a Wireless Printer:
Providing wireless printing capability to a standard wired printer can be achieved in several ways, depending on how you want the printer connected and shared on the wireless network.
One of the earlier methods is by having the wired printer connected to a USB Print Server instead of your computer.
This method is a wise choice for those who already have a high performance multi function printer, and just want the printer located somewhere other than right beside their office desk.
The USB print server synchronizes with the wireless router in 30 seconds, and can begin receiving print jobs sent by anyone one on the wireless home network.
All that’s needed for wireless printer sharing is to have the USB print server’s Control Center Utility installed on each computer that requires access to the printer.
Another approach is by upgrading your wireless router to a Wireless Router Print Server.
Using the wireless router USB option, now allows everyone on the wireless network to enjoy printing just by connecting the printer to the router using its USB Print and Storage Manager.
By attaching the printer to one of the wireless routers available USB ports, you can share it with anyone who connects to the wireless home network.
All that’s required for WiFi printing from each computer is to have wireless routers software and printer driver to be installed, and setting up wireless network printing is complete.
TIP: Using a wireless router print server is WHNME’s recommended choice, because it not only saves you the cost of buying an additional printer, but you also gain the added benefit of either upgrading your wireless router which is the central hub of your wireless home network, or locating the printer to any part of your network.
WiFi Printer Adapter Kits:
Applying a Wireless Printer Adapter kit to upgrade your current printer to achieve wireless capability is another course of action to achieving wireless printer capability, and can be found in the $50.00 – $80.00 range.
Going this route simply requires removing the printer cable that’s connected to your printer, whether it’s USB or the older DB25 type and replacing it with either WiFi or Bluetooth Technology dongles on both the printer port and computer.
FYI: When shopping around try to avoid buying a WiFi printer adapter which is proprietary to your specific model of printer, considering you may want to use it on another style of printer in the future.
That’s it! If you’re wireless home network requires handling many types of multi function printers, WHNME suggests looking into a dedicated Network Print Server.