How To Setup A Network Print Server

Setting up a network print server can greatly improve the efficiency of your office or home network. A print server enables multiple users to share a single printer, eliminating the need for a dedicated printer for each computer. Here are the steps to set up a network print server:

1. **Choose the Right Print Server**: There are different types of print servers available, including hardware-based print servers and software-based print servers. Consider your network setup and requirements to choose the right print server for your needs. Any computer will function fine for this step. Just as long as it has at least 16 GB of RAM minimum and plenty of hard drive space, the latest version of Windows. You will also need to activate print and document services on the print server.
We can do this by going to the control panel, to add or remove Windows features, and checking print and document services to the on status. Windows will install all necessary modules and finish. After Windows is finished, you can type the following in the Windows search bar.
Printmanagement.msc, to load the print management console.

2. **Connect the Print Server**: If you're using a hardware-based print server, connect it to your network using an Ethernet cable. For software-based print servers, you'll need to install the server software on a computer connected to the network.

3. **Install Printer Drivers**: Ensure that the necessary printer drivers are installed on the print server. This step is crucial for ensuring that all connected devices can communicate with the printer properly. In the print management console, right-click on printers, and select add a printer. Next, choose the option to add a printer by tcp/ip port. Type in the IP address of the printer and click next. You should have chosen an IP address outside of your DHCP range and programmed this IP in the printer control panel as a static address. You don't want the IP address changing as this will cause connection issues to the printer.

4. **Configure the Print Server**: Access the print server's configuration interface using a web browser or proprietary software. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to set up the print server, including assigning it a static IP address and configuring other relevant settings.

5. **Connect Client Devices**: Once the print server is configured, you can connect client devices to the server. Installing the printer drivers is simple, you can type the computer hostname of the print server like this \\myprintserver in the Windows search box and hit enter. A list of all the printers on the server will populate, double click the printer you want. That's it the printer will connect and download the appropriate driver all on its own. Your printer is now ready to use.

Printers on a print server are known as shared network printers. These types of printers can be difficult to deploy to machine-level targeting. It's easy at user level, but becomes a manual adding of printers for each user that logs on to any machine in the company.
That's why we create a special software for deployment of these types of printers. Please take a moment and check it out. It's titled Workstation Configurator. You can learn all about it, what it does, and how it can make printer deployment a breeze within your organization.

Workstation Configurator will deploy the printer for you. It will even deploy remotely, meaning you don't have to be present at the machine. Do it all from your office, without a physical visit.

Read more about this software here:

6. **Test the Setup**: Print a test page from each client device to ensure that they can communicate with the print server and printer successfully.

7. **Troubleshooting and Maintenance**: Regularly check the print server for any issues and update the printer drivers as needed. Troubleshoot any connectivity or printing problems that may arise.

Setting up a network print server can streamline printing processes and make it easier for multiple users to access a single printer over the network. Follow these steps to establish a reliable and efficient printing solution for your network.
Back to blog