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How to share a printer?
A comprehensive printer sharing guide

If you are using a printer at home or in your office and looking for a way to get the much desired ability to access your peripheral from a remote computer, then you've come to the right place. In this guide, I’ll highlight the simplest ways to share your printer for remote access. The good news for Windows users: you can do this with the help of the built-in HomeGroup feature working across LAN. The even better news: if you’d like to go further than your local network and share a printer over the Internet, there are efficient software apps that can help you easily achieve this. Plus, the dedicated programs will let you share printers from not only Windows but also Mac, Linux, and Android. Read on to learn more.

Contents

  1. Software for sharing printers over the Internet
    1. FlexiHub
    2. USB Network Gate
  2. Wireless Printer

Software for sharing printers over the Internet

As I’ve already mentioned, the standard Windows options allow you to connect your printer to network only within a local area. So, I’ll start the write-up with more versatile solutions like FlexiHub and USB Network Gate. These third-party tools work across any distance and make it possible to redirect printers over the Internet.


FlexiHub

If you don’t know which solution to choose to share a USB device over IP, you may use an efficient printer sharing software - FlexiHub. It allows access and helps to share a printer on Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android platforms.

FlexiHub

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

FlexiHub easily connects any remote printer no matter where it is.

FlexiHub

How to connect to a shared printer. Step-by-step guide

  1. Register a free FlexiHub account here or directly in the app later.
  2. Start a FlexiHub trial by choosing the number of connections.
  3. Install and open the software on both machines participating in the connection. To log in enter your registration e-mail and password.
  4. In the FlexiHub interface find the printer you are going to connect to and click the "Connect" button.
  5. That’s it! You may manage the printer like it is plugged to your computer directly!
printer sharing last step

Your printer will be redirected to the machine, and you can use it as if it were connected physically to the computer. In free FlexiShare subscription you don't have an opportunity to connect to remote devices. If you need to access remote printer over network you will have to pay for FlexiHub connections.

Pros:
  • The app works via wireless network
  • All connections are protected with advanced encryption
  • The app enables you to share any USB and Serial devices – scanners, web cameras, projectors, mobile phones, etc.

Cons:
  • Free version doesn't allow to access remote devices
  • The software has to be installed on all of your machines which will connect to the remote printer

USB Network Gate

Looking for an easy and effective way to share a printer over the network? USB Network Gate is specifically designed to provide remote access to USB devices, and will certainly help with sharing a printer over network in a couple of clicks.

Few easy steps:

  1. Download and install USB Network Gate .exe file (version for Mac). Install it on other computers as well.
  2. Once you install it, the printer to be shared will be displayed in the Devices window. If you need to change the port, add encryption into the connection or encipher data transfer – press the gearwheel icon next to Share. Once the setup is complete, click Share. Now the printer can be seen on all machines with USB Network Gate.

USB Network Gate

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

Looking for an easy and effective way to share printer over LAN? USB Network Gate is specifically designed to provide remote access to USB devices, and will certainly help with sharing a printer over network in a couple of clicks.

USB Network Gate
Pros:
  • 14-days trial version has a complete functionality
  • App is available for Mac and Linux also
  • Licensing works as standard software – you will only have to pay once
  • Unlike FlexiHub, it is capable to share printers over LAN as well

Cons:
  • Once the trial period is over you will need to buy a license for $159.95
  • The app has to be installed on every computer that needs access to the printer
Sharing printer over network

Wireless Printer

One of the most useful capabilities you may find in a modern printer is the built in networking. More and more current-day printers come with support for Wi-Fi, Ethernet or both. This is very convenient, as you don’t need to have your PC turned on to be able to access the printer. Now, you can connect to the printer directly over the network.

There’s no a general instruction on how to configure the networking option on your printer, as the set up depends on the type of the printer you have. But if you are sure that your device supports this feature just check the manual that came with your printer or the manufacturer’s website for information.

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