Wireless networking help (specifically wireless printer network card)

Here's my setup:

Laptop ---- connected to printer
Desktop PC
Desktop PC

I want to set up a wireless network. Using the network, I want to be able to share a broadband connection, and share the printer.
My solution to that would be to add a wireless network card to each PC (the laptop already has one) and get a wireless broadband router/access point.
However, the laptop will not be present at all times yet I want the printer to be accessible to the rest of the network all the time. Therefore I presume the only solution (that I can think of, short of moving the printer to a different room and connecting it to a different PC) is to find some wireless network card for the printer, and something to handle the document queues when the printers buffer fills up.

Secondly, is it better to have one PC to be connected to the net all the time, and use ICS to share the connection, or to have a wireless broadband router that is constantly connected (if that's possible, i'm not quite sure about that stuff)

Here's the spec of the stuff:

Laptop - Centrino wireless, WinXP pro, connected to printer
Printer - OKI C5100, network card (non-wireless)
PC 1 - WinXP Pro, no networking cards etc.
PC 2 - WinXP Pro, network card (non-wireless)

All the PCs have expantion slots for any nessecary upgrades.
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LucFEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
Hi liquideagle,

You can use a wireless printserver like this http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF06c/A10-12771-64302-34210-64302-87206-46205-46207.html to connect your printer to the network. There might be cheaper ones though....

For your internet connection. A broadband router is preffered, most of the times they have a build in firewall to protect your network.


liquideagleAuthor Commented:
(whoops, I haven't really asked a question.. its just facts... here we go...)

So what do i need? Is it just the network cards, one special printer one and an access point? Or somehing more?
Also, please suggest a specific product to get (especially with the printer one), as i'm hopeless.
liquideagleAuthor Commented:
Thanks! I posted my comment before i saw yours. I'll look into it.
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For the printer, a wireless bridge would do the job.  This is any wireless access point that can act as a sort of "reverse AP."  D-Link and Linksys each haev a couple of models.  Essentially, you plug a cable from a regular network card into the bridge, and it is as if the regular card is a wireless card.

Definitely do NOT use ICS. It will slow down the ICS PC's performance, it rqires the PC to be up all the time, it isn't as secure, and it isn't as efficient.  if you have not already bought an AP, then get one of the routers with a built-in access point, it will cost you less than separate units.  Also, f you ae getting a briding AP and a router/AP combo, get a pair that are designed to work together.
liquideagleAuthor Commented:
(Increasing the points 350->600)

Could you be a little more specific with the products? With a search on either site, too many results come up for me to decide which one i'm looking for.

Can someone reccomend a router/AP combo?
LucFEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
If you use ADSL, you should really take a look at this one http://www.draytek.com/english/product/vigor2600_x_w_we.php to be specific, the Vigor 2600We for using for your internet connection. It has a build in firewall and includes a wireless access point.
LucFEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
I personally have the Vigor 2600 (the version without the wireless access point) and have really good results with it.
http://www.dlink.com/products/?pid=241 (DWL-G810)

This is a bridge product that "converts virtually any Ethernet-based device—set-top box, game console, printer, laptop, or even desktop—into a wireless network device"

It is 802.11g.  the same page shows their older 802.11b and 802.11b+ bridge products.

You can use it with any of their wirless routers.  Here's an example product: http://www.dlink.com/products/?pid=274 (DI-824VUP)

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wireless broadband router is the way to go
some have print servers build in
if you have a machine that's nearly always on, share the printer on it
liquideagleAuthor Commented:
Will it make any difference that I have to 'dial-up' to my broadband connection? I don't dial a number, but I do have to use windows' DUN.

Those d-link products seem to be exactly what i'm looking for, and the added print server is a great feature. The price, however (hundreds of dollars) is quite a lot...
The draytek website seems to be down at the moment.
LucFEMEA Server EngineerCommented:
The router will take care of the dial up thingy, you can set the loginname and password there, you should look around on the internet site of the ISP for the other settings. Drayteks website seems to be down :-( You'll have to check again tomorrow.
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