This article explains how to connect two computers to one printer. Here we assume that you have a USB printer which needs to be connected with two computers.
USB printer sharing
Follow the steps to setup and share the printer with a USB switch capable of printer sharing.
USB printer switch
A USB printer switch is a device which is capable of sharing a USB printer with multiple computers.
1. Purchase a 2 Port USB switch. The 2 port USB switch which is also a printer sharing switch , will allow you to share the USB printer with multiple PC’s.
The IOGEAR 2 Port USB 2.0 Switch – Auto Printer Switch is a good choice for 2 port USB switch.
You can purchase the USB printer switch from Amazon here – 2 Port USB switch
2. Install the printer driver on the PCs. This can either be installed using the CD which came with the printer or downloaded from the internet based on the model number.
3. Configure the printer on the respective PCs for USB printer configuration.
4. Connect the PC’s to the USB port on the 2 Port USB switch using USB cables. This is as shown below. The device is connected to the printer using a USB cable. Both the PC’s connect to the device using USB cables.
5. The above 5 steps would ensure that the PC’ are now able to share and connect to the printer.
6. Test the print from both the PC’s. If the configuration is successful, the prints would be successful.
The above setup does not need any wired or wireless network since the computers are connected to the printer using USB cables.
If there are more computers to be connected to the printer, a IOGEAR 4-Port USB 2.0 Automatic Printer Switch can be purchased. This is also recommended , when you have expansion plans like requiring to add additional computers to the printer at a later date.
4 port USB switches can be purchased here – Check out 4 port USB hub on Amazon
Check out our Home Networking Book on Amazon. Learn how to setup home networks. Case studies and FAQ’s included.
1. My printer does not support USB. It is a parallel port printer. Would this configuration work.
A parallel port to USB converter can be purchased here – Parallel to USB converter. This would convert your printers parallel port to USB port which can then be connected to the device.
2. Will this device work with any printer
The device is a USB switch. It should not have issues with any printers unless specified in the documentation.
3. Should any additional configuration be performed on the PCs for this setup to work
No. it is not required. The normal USB configuration for printers would suffice.
4. Would the device require any drivers to be configured for the PCs to work
No. This is a USB device. The drivers would be installed automatically once connected to it.
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