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Print servers and WEP

Posted on 2006-04-28
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I have a computer lab of 25 wireless laptops connecting through a Proxim AP-700.  We use a mobile cart and decided to set a printer on it using a DLink DP-311U print server.  Everything works great until I enable WEP.  I cannot seem to get the print server to see the access point.  I called DLink and they told me it was impossible to add a WEP key in the print server.  While this Proxim device is very complex and worth every dollar, their technical support isn't.  Here are the steps I've taken.  I enabled MAC Authentication, I added in the DLink MAC address.  I can see the print server through the AP but it does not have the IP listed.  (static IP)

Any help on print servers and WEP would be much appreciated.

Thank you
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Question by:fferrel
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by:JimsZ
JimsZ earned 200 total points
ID: 16561596
If you have enabled MAC authentication for all devices, why run WEP ?  Unless your company needs to be very secure.  WEP isn't that strong of security and can be hacked.   Why not just remove WEP, keep the MAC authentication for all computers, and remove ssid broadcast ??
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by:jrits
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ID: 16561690
Is your Proxim B or G? Most print servers are 802.11b and that works fine on a AP that support 802.11b & 802.11g but when you activate WEP, most 802.11b fail to connect to the network. Try to set you AP to only 802.11b and check of your printserver can connect with WEP ennabled. I know it kinda sucks to set your AP to B, but it might help figure out the problem.

good luck..
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by:hfern
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If the printer does not support WEP then you will not be able to connect it to a WEP enabled access point. Sorry.

Can you not connect the printer over a wired connection? Note that printing to a wireless printer takes quite some bandwidth. Connecting to another wireless device means that your data first goes to the access point and then is relayed over the air to the printer. This reduces your bandwidth to half, but probably more. If the printer is a 802.11b device connecting over 11 MB/s and your laptops are 802.11g, then the penalty is much much more.

You will get the same functionality if you hook up the printer over an ethernet cable as when you hook it up over the air.
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lnfra earned 1400 total points
ID: 16563872
Hi fferrel,

Not too sure why Dlink inform you that their Print server does not support WEP. I see many other users who have it enabled.  
Maybe you can try the below suggestion from a user at Amazon.com.
Basically they just inform you when entering the WEP key do not enter spaces or dashes.  
Also it helps to disable you mac address filtering and enable the broadcast of your SSID while trouble shooting the WEP issue. Dont want any other security features to affect your connection.  It helps to follow jrits's suggestion to set your proxim transfer speed from Auto to 802.11B.

Wish you luck!


1. Wire it up (connect the print server to the router with an ethernet cable and the printer to the print server by USB).
2. Turn on printer, power on the print server (after startup sequence of ~20 sec, ethernet light should be lit).
3. At this point open up a browser and go to "192.168.0.10" and the print server config utility should start.
4. Click on the "configuration" tab and set: password, connection mode (mine is infrastructure), ESS-ID (your network's name), wireless channel, WEP (# bits and password). It's important to type the WEP key in exactly with no spaces or dashes because the utility won't give any error message if the password is wrong. Click 'save'.
5. Click on the "Network" tab and change the IP address if you want. It has to be within the range of assignable IP addresses for your wireless network (e.g. my router assigns from 192.169.1.1 to 192.169.1.101, so I set the print server to 192.169.1.2). Make sure to set "manually assign" otherwise you won't know what address your printer is on! I think the workgroup has to be set, but I'm not sure (I set it to the name of the wireless network).. Click 'save'.
6. At this point you should be able to print a test page. Click on the "tools" tab and click to print a test page. If it prints, you're in business.
7. Now you can set up the printer drivers. The instructions are actually pretty good for this, so use them here. Once that's done, try printing something that isn't a test page to make sure the printer itself is set up OK.
8. Now to configure the wireless portion. Unplug the ethernet cable, and click the reset button (recessed in the back of the print server). Once it finishes booting, the "wireless" light should be on or blinking. If so then you should be done. Try printing something.. I didn't have everything correctly set up initially, so this step took a few minutes. I think everything necessary to set was covered in #4.
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