If you have a USB printer, which doesn’t feature Wi-Fi or Ethernet network connectivity, Windows 10 makes it super easy to turn your computer into a print server by letting you share your USB printer in the network for everyone to access it with just a few click.
Printer sharing is nothing new, it’s a feature that has been part of the operating system for a long time, and you can still use it on Windows 10.
In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to share a printer on Windows 10 over the network without the need to set up Homegroup.
How to share a printer on Windows 10
To connect a USB printer to a Wi-Fi network without extra accessories, you can use Windows 10 “printer sharing”, here’s how to do it:
Click on Devices.
Select your printer from the list.
Click the Manage button.
Click the Printer properties link.
Open the Sharing tab.
Click the Change Share Options button.
Check the Share this printer option.
Change the printer share name as needed, but not required.
Click OK to complete the task.
Once you completed the steps, your USB printer will now be available in the network for anyone to connect and use.
How to install a shared printer on Windows 10
Installing a shared printer is an easy process, but it’s not the same as it would be to install a wireless printer.
To install a printer that you’re sharing in the network on another computer, do the following:
Click on Devices.
Click the Add printer & scanner button.
Click The printer that I want isn’t listed.
Check the Select a shared printer by name option.
Type the network path to the printer. For example,
\\computerName\printerName. You can also use the IP address for the computer sharing the printer if for some reason the name doesn’t work.
Leave the default printer name.
Click Next to install the shared printer on the computer.
Click Finish to complete the task.
After completing the steps, you should now be able to send print jobs through the network, to your computer, and to the USB printer.
Remember that users will only be able to print as long as the computer sharing the printer is turned on.
Although most new printers include a print server to connect it to a network using Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection, there are still a lot of printers that only feature USB or parallel cable connectivity, and Windows 10 offers an easy solution to enable you to share a printer with other people over the network.