How to share scanner on network

How to share scanner on network

Let's talk about sharing a USB scanner over network, LAN or wireless. I will borrow an example from my recent guide on sharing a USB printer: there are two Windows machines — one is in my home office upstairs, the other one is in a room downstairs, they need shared access to a USB scanner.

The PC upstairs has Lexmark 3500-4500 Series device connected to it via USB cable. I have a Wi-Fi router and wireless network, and I am to figure out various ways of sharing the scanner.


Method 1: Sharing scanner over network


Windows, macOS, Linux, Android
4.8 Rank based on 78+ users

The easiest way will be to use FlexiHub, an app that lets you access and share remote USB devices over IP. Figure out how to share scanner between two computers with FlexiHub help.


Step-by-step guide:

  1. Sign up a FlexiHub account here. Or you can register an account later in the app.
  2. Сhoose the number of connections for FlexiHub and start a trial.
  3. Install the software on each of your PCs that need access to the shared scanner.
  4. Launch FlexiHub and enter your login credentials — e-mail and password.
  5. Do the same for another PC that needs shared access.
    In the FlexiHub window on another computer find the USB scanner and select Connect.
  6. Here you go! Now the remote scanner is recognised like plugged in directly to your computer.
Sharing USB scanner with Flexihub

The free subscription - FlexiShare allows only to send invites to your local devices, you won't have an opportunity to access remote ones. To share and access your scanner you need to acquire a paid FlexiHub subscription.

  • The app is easy-to-use with no redundant settings or buttons;
  • Supports Windows, Mac and Linux;
  • Shares any USB and serial devices — printers, keyboards, fax machines, bluetooth adapters, etc.

  • Connection to remote devices is not possible in free plan.

Method 2: using reliable scanner sharing software

USB Network Gate

Windows XP and later, OS X 10.9+, Ubuntu 14.04+, Android 5.0+
4.9 Rank based on 179+ users

USB Network Gate is a software that helps you access USB devices as if they were directly connected to your machine. The way it works is pretty similar to FlexiHub.

USB Network Gate

How to connect scanner to PC over network. Step-by-step guide:

  1. Download USB Network Gate from the official web site, follow this link. Install the software on all the computers that need shared access.
  2. Once the app is installed on all computers, the connected device will be displayed in the app’s window. Press Share next to the name of a USB scanner, and it will appear in USB Network Gate on other computer. It’s ready to be used. If you need, you can add encryption or compression to the connection. Change ports to which the device is connected via USB Network Gate settings.
how to share usb scanner with software
  • 14-day trial version you can test and use for various experiments;
  • Works across platforms — Windows, Mac, Linux and Android;
  • Supports all USB devices, not only scanners;
  • Support services are available any time.

  • If you want to use it for more than 14 days, you will have to purchase a license;

Method 3: Windows functionality for scanner sharing

Windows OS offers functionality to share a scanner with other computers, or set it up as a wireless scanner on your network.

This is how you do it:

Step 1
Plug in your scanner’s USB cable to a computer connected to the network or to the USB port of a router or modem. Follow the instructions to install the scanner, if it has not been done before. You can refer to the installation instructions specific to your scanner model or Microsoft guide.

Step 2
Open Control Panel from Start menu, go to Network and Sharing Center and click View network computers and devices.

Step 3
Right-click your scanner icon and select Install to make it accessible to other machines in the network.

windows sharing scanner guide


This does not work on Windows XP, there is no such option. To share printer on Windows XP try either of the above methods.

  • Anyone in the network can use the shared scanner;
  • The connection cannot be protected — anyone can access scanned images, including important documents.

Summing up the scanner sharing topic

As you see, FlexiHub seems to be the easiest way to share the printer over the network. You don’t need any additional settings or hardware — just the single point access from the FlexiHub account.

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