How to share a printer.

Posted on 2005-05-02
Last Modified: 2013-11-13
I have 4 PCs running 2000 and XP, and 1 Mac running OS8.6
all are connected via a Linksys Wireless router. All have internet connectivity thru that.
I want to know how to allow the mac to be able to see the other machines on the work group, access the shared printer on Desktop1.
The other thing that I would like to be able to accomplish is allowing  the mac to transfer files to Desktop1 so they can be burnt to cd/dvd. I need this share to appear on the desktop.
Since the mac is an older laptop (wallstreet) Which I do not want to upgrade.
I am not very familiar with macs protocols or configs. So I really need a down and dirty on how to accomplish this.

Any other documentation that can be given on how to accomplish this and other tasks that might come in handy is appreciated.
Question by:RX8_Tech
    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    To provide the best range of connectivity to windows PCs from your Mac, I'd recommend DAVE, from Thursby software.

    As you'll see from that page, it greatly simplifies connecting from a Mac to Windows PCs.
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    With out buying Software is there any way to do it?

    Expert Comment

    I do not know of any way of sharing a printer easily (or at all) with a mac using an OS that's below OS X. Dave really is the only hope I know of in an os 8/9 environment. OS X has Samba built into the operating system allowing you to browse and connect to pc shares/printers. Dave on OS X makes connecting to windows domains and sharing a mac shared printer with a pc a bit simplier, but for the most part there are in operating system supported features which allow you to do these things without using Dave. If the printer was shared to an IP instead of being an object in a workgroup it would be a different story.

    Accepted Solution

    Besides using DAVE you have these options:

    a. Run a Windows Server variant on your Desktop1 and enable Services for Macintosh. Both File-access and printing will be possible natively on the Mac (via Chooser ...). All your problems solved, skip the rest of my post!

    b. Just for the printing (no file-access) you could consider networking your printer (=connecting it to the network directly instead of Desktop1 sharing it).
    MacOS 8/9 compatible printer/printserver combinations include HP/HP JetDirect or Epson/Axis. (If your printer has an Ethernet-port already, just use that.)

    c. A fast, cheap and convenient solution for the occasional file-transfer between Mac and PC is buying a USB-Stick.

    d. If the USB-Stick is not convenient (or cheap) enough you can run an FTP-Server on Desktop1 (eg Cerberus <>) and on the Mac use an FTP-Client (eg NetFinder, Transmit 1.7 <>)

    Expert Comment

    Thanks for accepting the answer, I am glad if I could help. (It was my first comment on Experts-Exchange.)

    Depending on the path you choose I can give you a follow-up on the "down and dirty" details.

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