Configure Network Printer
Different ways to configure network printers
To configure network printers, you must first be able to identify which kind of setup you need for your home or office. There are three ways to configure network printers, each with its own pros and cons. The decision of choosing a particular setup method depends on the space and time allotted to configure a network printer. A printer can be shared over the Windows network, using external print servers and through a built-in Network Interface Card (NIC).
Different ways to configure network printers are as follows
- Adding a printer through Windows wizard
- Share printers through external printer servers
- Printers with Network Interface Cards
Adding a printer through Windows wizard
The Windows Add a Printer wizard is the easiest way to configure a network printer. The wizard works best when there is an existing network in the home or office. Once the network is established, then all that is needed to do is to set a host computer which will receive all the print queues. The driver will be installed on the host computer and then it will shared on the network through that computer.
Share printers through external printer servers
The Windows wizard is an easy way to configure network printers, however, there is a downside to sharing printers using this function. Printers shared through this wizard use computers as hosts. This means that if the computer is turned off in hibernation or in sleep mode, then the printer cannot be accessed by anyone in the network. Keeping a computer turned on at least 8 hours a day for the sole purpose of hosting a printer can be power consuming. To resolve this problem, external printer servers can be attached to the printer to eliminate the need of a host computer. External print servers can be bought in wireless and wired versions and the choice between these options depend on the layout of the home or office space.
Printers with Network Interface Cards
If you want to buy a new computer, then it is highly recommended that a printer with an in-built network interface card should be purchased. This is the best and fastest way to configure a network printer. This kind of printer has its own IP address, thus eliminating the need for an external printer server or connecting the printer to a computer network.
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