To connect one printer to two computers, connect the printer to a home Ethernet or Wi-Fi network. If the printer does not have networking capabilities, connect it to a print server.
Many newer printers have networking capabilities. Some can connect to home wireless networks and some can connect to a network through an Ethernet connection. To connect multiple computers to a single printer using a home network, use the following steps.
- Plug in the printer and computers
- Install the printer drivers
- Set up the printer
To connect the printer using an Ethernet connection, connect the printer to a router using an Ethernet cable. Wireless printers contain wireless antennae, which do not require physical connections.
Install the printer drivers on each of the computers. This comes included on the CD that came with the printer. Most manufacturers also offer drivers and updates for download on their websites. Install the version compatible with the operating system.
After the installation is complete, set up the software. The driver setup may ask for a preferred connection method. Wording can vary depending on model or manufacturer, but users should select options prompting wireless or network connections. Follow any other prompts the setup process offers.
Some printers do not have networking capabilities. If this is the case, users can connect their printer to multiple computers using a print server. This is a standalone device that allows printers to connect to a network using an Ethernet connection. Some routers also have built-in print servers, which is also a convenient option.