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usb sharing

Posted on 2003-11-28
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Last Modified: 2013-11-09
is there a way of sharing a usb thing eg a webcam or a scanner on a Local area network
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Question by:johnlwarence
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by:shivsa
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u need to buy usb sharing hub.

like this
http://www.thinkgeek.com/computing/accessories/5f2a/
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by:johnlwarence
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is there not any software
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by:shivsa
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I think it depends on the device u are having.
you can share a USB port presuming that the USB device has software support enabling the device itself to be shared.
HP provide software for its scanner and printers to be shared on usb.
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by:shivsa
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There is no comparison between a USB share and a serial or parallel share, as the device is handled via independent software.
check your scanner manual for share software.
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by:chicagoan
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AFAIK, while you can share a USB device like a printer via the network, there aren't any that you can share over the BUS. There are USB switches that will let you avoid reconnecting everything like http://www.thinkgeek.com/computing/accessories/5f2a/

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Geekelite earned 75 total points
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The fast answer is no.

Yes, you could share a device like a printer, but it would shared directly via the PC that it is connected to, such that that PC would have to be on for the printer to be shared by other computers on the network.

Devices such as webcams and scanners cannot be shared via USB.  The suggestion for a USB switch might be your best bet, but really, the technology doesnt currently support it.
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