Leopard: Print Sharing to Windows

Leopard: Print Sharing to Windows

For those of us who run multiple different machines it can be a pain to share resources such as printers. Most of the how-to guides I’ve seen on the Internet tell how to share a Windows based printer to OS X. I’m going to show how to share an OS X based printer to Windows.

The first step is to make sure your printer works in OS X. If you’re looking for a new printer, try here for Tiger (OS X 10.4) or here for Leopard (OS X 10.5). Any printer on this list is going to be Windows compatible. There are a lot more printers then this that will work, but be sure to check the manufacturers web site for updated OS X drivers. On the Windows box make sure to download and install the Windows drivers too. They might fail, but it’s easier to have the driver preinstalled.

On the OSX Machine go to System Preferences then Sharing. Simply click on Printer Sharing and exit out of the screen.

In Windows go to Start -> Control Panel (or All Programs, then Ctonrol Panel.) Click on Printers and Faxes, then “Add a Printer”. Choose Next then “A Network Printer,” next again and make sure Browse for a Printer is checked. A list of computers with shared resources will come up. Double Click on the one that is your OSX box and hit next yet again. The OS X name may be something like MAC00123456, this is the EtherNet card’s unique Mac address. A list of available printers should come up, highlight the one you want to install and hit next again.

The next step is a bit complicated, when you see a message saying that the printer drive will install automatically and it could be a security risk, go ahead and say Yes to the message. The next message may says “The server for the printer does not have the correct printer driver installed.” Click Ok, as this is why the printer driver was already installed. If the printer driver isn’t on the list, then browse to the printer driver that you installed earlier. Hit OK, perhaps do a test page just to be safe, and enjoy printing!

2 thoughts on “Leopard: Print Sharing to Windows

  1. Rick Reply

    Something I forgot to mention that I found out while researching this article.

    Certain printers just do not like to be shared. The old HP 4000 Laserjet didn't have a problem doing this. The HP PSC 1200 all-in-one, won't work at all.

    Another option is use a Local Port instead of "Network Printer" then make a new TCP/IP port to the host machine. You may need to choose a print queue name for this which is usually default, print or direct.

    Most of the problems are going to be that Windows just doesn't see the printer correctly. This can be resolved by using the IP of the host machine instead of the name for the TCP/IP port, but keep in mind that this will stop working if the IP address changes.

  2. Tony Reply

    There is an even easier option: http://www.apple.com/support/downloads/bonjourfor

    Just install the Bonjour for Windows Client, and it will use Bonjour zero-config protocol detect the printer connected to the OSX machine. I think all you have to do from there is then install the printer in Windows, and choose Bonjour as the connection (it's been awhile since I have done this).

    I wish Apple would make this more prominent on their site.

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