HP JetDirect 300X

I was thinking of buying a HP JetDirect300X printer server and wanted to know if:

1. The 300x stores the drivers so you can install the printer over the network without having to download drivers.  

2.  The 300x needs a dedicated computer.

3.  Will it show up in the network neighborhood.

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1. No. This is a function of printing from a share. No print server box does this.

2. No dedicated PC is required for direct mode printing, but it's easier to administer if you have a client/server print setup. This doesn't require an actual server OS - a 95/98 box will work fine.

3. Only in two situations:
  a) If you install the HP Print Provider it will show up in the Net Hood on that PC only. The Print Provider is crappy and should not be used.
  b) If you configure a box as a server and share it out the Jetdirect will show up in NetHood for all PC's.

There are much cheaper printer servers out there - none are as fast as the Jetdirect boxes. Some are utter crap for configuration and some are unsuitable for any kind network beyond a few local PC's.

What a Jetdirect box will do for you is give you the ability to put you printer wherever you want it and be able to print from all your networked PC's.

It isn't always the best choice, and if you give me more details and can give you a better idea of whether the unit is likely to meet your expectations.

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