There are ways to network a printer. You can network printers using Microsoft Windows, non-Windows devices, wireless print servers, Bluetooth. And for some printers, they can even print from the Cloud.
Networking Printers Using Microsoft Windows
All modern versions of Windows has a feature, which is called File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks. This feature allow a printer that are connected with one PC to be shared with other PCs. The printer is required to be actively connected with the PC. The computer should be running. Other devices will be able to reach the printer through that running computer. Firstly, you need to enable sharing on the computer. From the left-hand menu select “Change advanced system settings” and set “Turn on file and printer sharing.” This can be done from within the Network and Sharing Center of Control Panel. Secondly, share the printer. Choose “the Devices and Printers”on the start menu and select the “Printer properties” option after right-clicking on the target computer. A new feature called HomeGroup is added to Microsoft Window 7. It supports networking a printer and sharing files. If you want to share a printer, you can create a homegroup via the HomeGroup option on Control Panel. Make sure that the Printers setting is enabled to share. Connect other PCs to the homegroup appropriately.
For those printers usNetworking Printers Using Non-Windows Devices
non-windows devices, older versions of Mac OS X offered a utility which is called Printer Center. Printer Center can be used to set up printers connected. A new feature is added to the current versions. Current versions are capable of automatically detecting and adding certain types of printers. And in the Print &Fax section of System Preference there are manual configuration options.
Apple AirPrint enables Apple iOS devices’ capability of Wi-Fi wireless printing. However, a printer of the same brand is required.
Generic support for network printing is provided respectively by different flavors of Unix/Linux. Although user interface details may differ, most of them are based on CUPS, which is a common Unix printing mechanism.
Wireless Print Servers
Insert the printer into the printer server’s USB port. Connect the printer server to a access point or a wireless router.
Using Bluetooth Printers
Bluetooth printer, which offers Bluetooth network ability, is designed for supporting general-purpose printing. With Bluetooth printing , you can print from your cell phone.
Printing From the Cloud
If you want to print from the cloud, your printer should be connected to the Internet. And this involves special-purpose software.