How to Connect a Laptop to a Shared Printer
By Ruri Ranbe
Businesses can use homegroups -- a collection of one or more computers connected to the same network -- to share files and devices across workstations in the office. Once a printer is connected and installed to a particular computer, it can be shared with other PCs within range. Windows 7 includes a wizard that automates the installation of a shared printer on a laptop; all you need to know is the name of the printer and name of the workstation to which the printer is connected.
Click "Start | Control Panel | Network and Internet | Network and Sharing Center." Select "Change Advanced Sharing Settings" from the left pane.
Click "Home or Work." Select "Turn on Network Discovery" and then click "Save Changes."
Select "Control Panel Home" from the left pane. Click "Hardware and Sound," then "Devices and Printers." Choose "Add a Printer" from the toolbar to run the Add Printer wizard.
Click "Add a Network, Wireless or Bluetooth Printer." Select "The Printer That I Want Isn't Listed."
Choose "Select a Shared Printer by Name." Click "Browse." Double-click the computer to which the printer is connected.
Click the target printer and then click "Select." Click "Next." Create a name for the printer, or use the default name. Click "Next."
Deselect "Set as the Default Printer," if preferred. Click "Finish" to install the printer to the laptop.
The computer must be connected to the homegroup to detect and connect to the shared printer. Click "Start," type "homegroup" and then press "Enter." Select "Join Now," if available, and follow the on-screen prompts to add the laptop to the homegroup.
Ruri Ranbe has been working as a writer since 2008. She received an A.A. in English literature from Valencia College and is completing a B.S. in computer science at the University of Central Florida. Ranbe also has more than six years of professional information-technology experience, specializing in computer architecture, operating systems, networking, server administration, virtualization and Web design.