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Connect Mac 10.6 to Windows XP Home and shared printer

Posted on 2011-02-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I am trying to get a new MacBook Pro connected to a Windows XP Home PC that has a shared printer installed on it (the Windows PC).  The printer is an Epson NX400 and I can print from other PC's connected to the same router.  

On the Mac, when I go into Finder, I see the PC but it says "Connection Failed" .  When I try to add the Windows Shared Printer to the Mac, I see my Workgroup name and then the PC name.  When I click on the PC name, it prompts me for a user name and password.  I enter the user name with no password (because there is not one set up on the PC).  The printer does not show up in the third panel on the Mac "Add Printer" dialog box and I'm returned to the Print & Fax Window.

Any thoughts?
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Question by:kbrannock
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by:wrmichael
ID: 34955644
Did you install the mac Epson NX400 driver on the macbook?

did you make sure it is supported on a mac?
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by:kbrannock
ID: 34955651
Yes and yes
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by:wrmichael
ID: 34955654
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Author Comment

by:kbrannock
ID: 34955668
If I connect the Epson directly to the Mac it works without any problems.
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Author Comment

by:kbrannock
ID: 34955714
I'm really thinking it is an authentication or connection issue between the Mac and PC due to the fact that the PC is XP Home.
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Expert Comment

by:wrmichael
ID: 34955733
Did you follow these steps?
Mac OS X v10.5 or later

   1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple menu.
   2. Choose Print & Fax from the View menu.
   3. Click the + button to add a printer.
   4. Press the Control key while clicking the "Default" icon (or any other icon on the toolbar), then choose Customize Toolbar from the contextual menu that appears.
   5. Drag the Advanced (gear) icon to the toolbar.
   6. Click Done.
   7. Click the Advanced icon that was added to the toolbar.
   8. Choose Windows from the Type pop-up menu.
   9. In the URL field, type the printer's address in one of the following formats:

      smb://workgroup/server/sharename
      smb://server/sharename

      Note: "workgroup" is the name of the Windows workgroup that the computer sharing the printer belongs to. "server" is the name of the computer sharing the printer (or its IP address). "sharename" is the shared Windows printer's share name. If the share name contains spaces, replace each space with "%20" (without quotation marks).

      Tip: You don't need a "workgroup" when specifying the IP address of the computer (such as when the printer is on a different subnet), or if your Mac belongs to the same Windows (SMB) workgroup.
  10. In the Name field, type the name you would like to use for this printer in Mac OS X.
  11. Choose the appropriate PPD or printer driver from the "Print Using" pop-up menu.
  12. Click Add.

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by:wrmichael
ID: 34955751
rereading your original post it sounds like you are not authenticating with the xp machine.


can you access the windows pc from other pc workstations?

Do you have the printer shared for "everyone" or to specific users?
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by:wrmichael
ID: 34955773
reading [http://www.windowsbbs.com/networking/47663-windows-xp-home-mac-os-x-tiger-printer-share.html]  I see this:


The usual cause for a situation where one PC can 'see' an XP system but not have access to anything is related to how the XP PC knows what access to grant.

The simplest way is to enable the guest account on XP and have the user on the other PC log on to their system. This works in a pure Microsoft environment and I'm guessing XP would require the same from a MAC OS it could work with. Guest is usually enabled by default on XP-home and disabled by default on XP-pro.

Log on to your XP box in safe mode as administrator and take a look at your user accounts. Make sure Guest is not disabled.

If the issue isn't this simple, there are some testing things you can to do pin down the source of the problem but no need for those until you need them.


Might need to enable the guest account.

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Expert Comment

by:wrmichael
ID: 34955781
on my home network I ended up using an IP Address instead of machine name to connect.  

the fact that you see it in the finder makes me think it should not matter but might be worth trying.  you can also go to a terminal windows and ping the pcname to see if it resolves correctly.

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by:wrmichael
ID: 34955804
another silly thing to check is the firewall.

disable it,  if it works then re enable it and figure out how to configure it to allow the shared printer on the XP machine.

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Expert Comment

by:roylong
ID: 34955860
Do you have a wireless router?  Does it have a USB port for printer sharing?  Have you thought about sharing the printer like that?
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Author Comment

by:kbrannock
ID: 34955949
Thanks.  I'll try these steps in the morning.
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Expert Comment

by:wrmichael
ID: 34955953
Good luck and have a great day!
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by:ocanada_techguy
ID: 34957809
Whenever connecting from standalone box A to standalone box B one generally from A logged in as user A one must supply machineBname\userB for the username and user B's password to connect to it.  Can even try \\IPaddress.of.box.B\sharenameonB  with IPaddress.of.box.B\userB for user cred.

Others with 10.6 are having problems too
http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2295042&tstart=0
http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2131955&tstart=0
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Accepted Solution

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kbrannock earned 0 total points
ID: 34960484
I'm going to close this because the customer just decided to buy a wireless printer.  Go figure.  Thanks for all the help.
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Author Closing Comment

by:kbrannock
ID: 34995322
Question closed because customer decided to go a different route.
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