How to Install a Wireless Printer Without a Router

by Kammy Pow

Connecting a wireless printer to a wireless router provides convenience and flexibility for the work environment. While a router makes life easier for the larger network, it is not necessarily required for wireless printing. Wireless printers can be installed and shared through an ad hoc wireless connection.

Install the Printer Software

To set up wireless printing without a router, connect the wireless printer to the main computer through the USB port and install the printer software, selecting the option "Local printer attached to this computer." Refer to the printer's user guide for detailed instructions.

Set Up the Ad Hoc Wireless Network

Create an ad hoc wireless network on the main computer. In Windows Vista, select the "Set up a wireless ad hoc (computer-to-computer) network" option in the "Network and Sharing Center." Create a network name, choose the security type and create a security key or passphrase. Microsoft recommends using WPA2-Personal security. Check the box next to "Save this network" to save the settings.

Activate Printer Sharing Options

In Control Panel, go to the "Network Setup Wizard" to turn on file and printer sharing capabilities. Return to the printer's properties, and change the configuration to use a TCP/IP connection, assigning an IP address that resides on the same gateway, subnet and channel as the main computer. Make sure the wireless printer and computers are within range of one another to facilitate communication.

About the Author

Kammy Pow studied biological sciences at the University of California Irvine. She spent 13 years as a programmer for the financial, medical research, and healthcare sectors. She has been freelancing since 2005 and currently writes health-care related material and pens the occasional review for Southern California altweeklies.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera wireless image by DXfoto.com from Fotolia.com