How To Use 1 Printer for 2 Computers

Dear Computer Lady,

I have Time Warner cable with RoadRunner, a several year old Gateway PC and an HP 2355 all-in-one printer.

The printer is plugged into the PC and the PC is plugged into my Netgear wireless router. I got the router because my wife recently got a laptop.

My question is, how can she print things? The jacks in the router aren’t compatible with the cable on the printer and it would be very inconvenient to have to unplug the printer from my PC and plug it into her laptop every time she needs to print something. I do have the software CD that came with the printer.

Thanks, Mike

Dear Mike,

You have a couple of options for your wife to print.

If you want to keep the same physical setup that you currently have, (the printer plugged into your computer all the time) you can network your computer and your wife’s laptop, then share the printer from your computer with your wife’s laptop.

Once you have networked the two computers, (which is too complicated to outline here) you only need to make sure your computer is turned on, and your wife can print from her laptop.

You have already mentioned another option, which would be to connect the printer directly to her laptop when she wants to print.

Your third option would be to purchase a printer that can be attached directly to your network. With a network printer, you would either attach an ethernet cable directly to your router, or connect it wirelessly, and all computers on the network will be able to print to that printer.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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