How to Connect a USB Printer to a Router

By Christian Petersen

Computer routers accept Ethernet cables.
i ADSL Router image by Phil2048 from

Connecting a printer to your network is an important part of maintaining your productivity. Connecting a printer to a router allows you to print documents from different computers on one printer, eliminating the need for multiple devices. Most newer printers use a USB interface for connecting to computers, while routers use Ethernet cables. Connecting a USB printer to a router is a matter of connecting it to a print server using its own USB cord, and then connecting the print server to the router using its Ethernet cable. Some newer routers have an integral print server with a USB interface; these routers allow you to simply plug the printer into the router directly.

Purchase a print server. Many leading networking companies like D-link, Linksys, Netgear, Belkin and others make print servers. If your router has an integral print server, you will not need to purchase this piece of equipment.

Connect the printer's USB cable to the print server. Connect the print server to the router using its Ethernet cable.

Turn on the printer. If the printer is one you are already using, you are finished. If it is a new printer, you will need to use the CD that came with it to install the drivers for the printer on your computer. Insert the CD and follow the on-screen instructions for installing the printer software.