How do you connect multiple wireless laptops to printers

J.R. Sitman
J.R. Sitman used Ask the Experts™
on
We are going to an event at a convention center.  They are providing only wireless access.  We will have 6 laptops and 3 printers.  Printers are not wireless.  How do I connect the printers to all the laptops
Comment
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Active Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015
Commented:
In your scenario you want to connect the printers to a usb wireless printserver.

ref link:  http://www.ricksdailytips.com/convert-usb-printer-to-wireless/
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
We tried that a while back with a TP-Link wireless print server and the results were less than desirable.  
Can the laptops be connected to a switch as well as the printers?
FOXActive Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015
Commented:
of course...that is even better...you can get a usb printserver that connects to the switch as well, give the printer(s) addresses and your off to the races.
C++ 11 Fundamentals

This course will introduce you to C++ 11 and teach you about syntax fundamentals.

J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
I just ordered this to test.  What do you think?

NETGEAR WGPS606 54 Mbps Wireless Print Server with 4-port Switch
FOXActive Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015

Commented:
That is good, it supports up to 2 usb printers I believe.  This specific model is at end of life though, you know that, correct?
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
I didn't.  Is there a newer model?
FOXActive Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015

Commented:
If you are running hp printers...they offer brand specific wireless print servers.  What brand of printers are you using?
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
They are HP.
I'd like to throw a spanner in the works here. What model printers are these?

If the printers do not support PCL5/6 or PostScript, then they are host-based printers, using something like HP's PCL3. Host-based printers are difficult to network. They work fine if shared from a PC, but, if you want to use a printserver, you must make sure the printserver supports your particular printer model. All reputable printserver manufacturers have compatibility lists. If your printer is not on the list you must assume that it will not work.

Ifs your printer supports PCL or PS, any printserver will do the job.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
HP 401n.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
@Foxluv, so I would configure the Printer server to the printers, then connect it to the switch.  Then connect laptops to the switch and add the printers to the laptops?
FOXActive Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015

Commented:
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
yes
FOXActive Directory/Exchange Engineer
Top Expert 2015
Commented:
Jrsitman,
You have 2 options.  You can purchase a wireless router with printserver like we mentioned above and plug the usb printer in to the router and configure it , then have each laptop connect to it wirelessly.
ref link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0zi3GrR5Ek

The second option is to purchase just a wireless router make sure all your laptops connect to the router.  Plug the printer in to one of the laptops and share it out to the rest of the laptops.  With this scenario the other laptops will rely on the source laptop to be on and have the printer plugged in to it at all times.
ref link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pi1Ld3_0mRg

Make sure you have the drivers for the printer already installed on your laptops or you have them on a usb in case windows doesn't have it preinstalled.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
Thanks.  This sounds perfect.
Foxluv is correct. The printer supports languages so any printserver will work.

I would try to avoid sharing the printer from a PC.

My preference would be a third option: plug the printer into the wireless router (if it has a network port)
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
@hdhondt.  You say "plug the printer into the wireless router".  Do you mean the wireless print server router or a standard wireless router?

We will be at a convention center with no way to connect a wireless router directly to their network to configure it.  I'm not a wireless expert, but believe that's how it's done, correct?
They may provide a wireless router at or near your stand. If that is not available, ignore my third option.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
What if we bring our own
As long as it can be connected to the rest of the exhibition network it should be fine. However, a router will need a wired connection, so that probably rules it out. So you're back to the printserver option.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
Thanks.  Just wanted to verify.
J.R. SitmanIT Director

Author

Commented:
Thanks for helping

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial