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Postby *tanya* » Sat Apr 09, 2011 12:28 pm

Hi,
I need to share a printer between 2 PCs - I think the only way is to use a network:

Computers:
1. XP (home) SP3, (up to date) (Dell Dimension E520)
2. XP Professional (up to date) (Dell Optiplex 780)
3. XP (home) SP2 (HP Pavilion A1100N)...

Printer:
Canon All in One Printer: Multipass PIXMA MP240 series

Router:
D-LINK Ethernet broadband router: DI 704UP (wired)

USB hubs
Several (4 to 7 ports)

I have not installed any printer-related software for the router

I am worried about setting up a network since the 3 PCs all operate through the router independently.
I don't want to have to enter passwords etc.
I am concerned about the Windows XP SP2 being "kicked off" its internet connection.


Questions:
1. If there are complications from trying to set up the network (like passwords, etc., inability to access the internet) can I reverse it?

2. Is there any way to share the printer using only a USB hub?
If one uses a USB cable with 2 Standard-A plugs (connectors)? (instead of the usual USB cable (A-B - Standard-A plug and Standard-B plug))

3. Re: the HP A1100N (256 Mbs of RAM, and Windows Home XP2)
I don't want this PC to share the printer. I have not installed any Printer software on it but I still need it to access the internet through the Router.
I realize the Windows XP Home (SP2) computer should be upgraded to SP3 but:
a) It only has 256 MBs of RAM
b) I don't know if SP3 would "kill" it
and
c) If it did "kill" it could I remove the upgrade and revert to SP2 again?
Thank you in advance!
*tanya*
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Postby Karlsweldt » Sat Apr 09, 2011 2:33 pm

Depends on what port is on the printer. If the older style port, NewEgg has an LPT to LAN adapter available.
If via USB connection on the printer, then a USB printer auto-share switch may be useful. Or a wireless print server may be appropriate.
You could also consider one computer as the host for the printer, and all other users on the private network can access it. Simple to set up, just add a new printer, from network, on the other units.
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Postby *tanya* » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:30 am

Hi Karlsweldt,
I appreciate your reply.
Questions in Dark Red
Karlsweldt wrote:Depends on what port is on the printer.

It is USB
[...]
Karlsweldt wrote:If via USB connection on the printer, then a USB printer auto-share switch may be useful.

I found these on Ncix.ca
2PORT USB 2.0 AUTO PRINTER SHARE A PRINTER OR USB DEVICE -- Reg. Price $19.78 CAD
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=BH3707&vp ... ure=IOGEAR
and
IOGEAR 2 Port USB 2.0 Printer Auto Sharing Switch - Reg. Price: $27.56 CAD
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=43349&vpn ... ure=IOGEAR
(This is the same you recommended)

Do you know the difference?
Karlsweldt wrote:Or a wireless print server may be appropriate.

I think wireless would be too "complicated"
Karlsweldt wrote:You could also consider one computer as the host for the printer, and all other users on the private network can access it. Simple to set up, just add a new printer, from network, on the other units.


I have not set up a network (i.e. configured a network) - they are all physically networked but run independently of one another. I dread configuring a network - unless it is reversible:

1. PC 3 (HP windows XP home SP2) is physically attached to the router and if I network the other 2 (XP Pro SP3 and XP home SP3) and not the SP2 HP PC, would the SP2 still act independently?

2. If I mess up with the other 2 (the SP3's) and printer, could I reverse things and end up the way I am now (i.e. only physically networked independently)?

3. I have a 7-port hub. If I got 2 USB cables each with 2 Standard-A plugs (connectors)
A -------------------------A
instead of:
A -------------------------B
could I attach each PC to the hub from USB ports (on the PCs)?
I'd be using the printer as the component that has multiple devices (2 computers) instead of the usual hub set up where the PC is the component with multiple devices? (unless I had 1 computer with 2 devices - another computer, and a USB printer) - Would the hub technology allow this?


Thanks again, Karlsweldt!
*tanya*
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Postby Karlsweldt » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:52 am

The more expensive of your two listed hubs would have more features, but each still has only two 'in' ports. If your setup uses the USB feature for interconnecting, then a powered USB hub (required!) may be acceptable for all units to access the printer. Even if the printer interface is noted as USB 1.1, it still would be backward-compatible with any USB 2.0 devices or services. Having a multi-port USB hub connected directly with the printer will avoid any possible routing conflicts.
Those common auto-switch USB printer hubs are intended for just two computer feeds. There are more expensive printer hubs, which include a USB in port as well as a LAN port. Example: The LAN interface will still be best.
You would have to install the printer software on each computer either method, to be effective. If two computers send print jobs simultaneously, there would be no conflicts.. the one computer that was a few milliseconds slower in sending would have to "wait in line" for the print queue. Same with a LAN or wireless link.
Setting up a private or home network is simple.. just set the Firewall program to "fully trust" only those IP addresses of the local units.
To discover the IP address of any connected units on a home or private net, use the 'command' process of Windows: Start > Run > (type in cmd) then you have a window for command-prompts. Type in ipconfig/all and note all the LAN IP Intranet addresses.. even the IP address of an Internet hub or modem.
To find the routing address of a LAN-connected unit, use the phrase route print which will show any networked routes.
When done with the 'command' window, simply type in exit and the window will close.
The Windows XP version requires SP3 to be considered "active" or acceptable for use. You have another 3 years (approximately) for extended service life.
You can indeed network older and newer OS types with little difficulty, as long as the Firewall knows who to trust fully. The standards for LAN operations are backward-compatible, and a 10/100/1000 network will default to the lower range whenever needed, automatically.. but you will never gain any higher speeds than the slowest 2-way connection.. no 'forward' compatibility.
A LAN setup for all the computers to access the printer would be best, but you can still get good results if one computer hosts the printer.. and the other units connect to it.
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Postby *tanya* » Sat Apr 16, 2011 9:15 am

Hi Karlsweldt,
Thank you very much for replying and for the information!

Karlsweldt wrote:The more expensive of your two listed hubs would have more features, but each still has only two 'in' ports.

I only need 2 ports for now
Karlsweldt wrote:If your setup uses the USB feature for interconnecting, then a powered USB hub (required!) may be acceptable for all units to access the printer.

I have a 7-port powered USB hub (2.0). Would this method entail the 2 USB cables with the A --- A connectors instead of the <usual> A --- B connectors?
Karlsweldt wrote:Even if the printer interface is noted as USB 1.1, it still would be backward-compatible with any USB 2.0 devices or services. Having a multi-port USB hub connected directly with the printer will avoid any possible routing conflicts.

Could the 3 computers still use the router (D-LINK Ethernet broadband router: DI 704UP (wired)) for internet?
I.E. just be physically networked (independently networked) and not configured on a network?
Karlsweldt wrote:Those 7-port powered USB hub (2.0) are intended for just two computer feeds. There are more expensive printer hubs, which include a USB in port as well as a LAN port. Example: The LAN interface will still be best.
You would have to install the printer software on each computer either method, to be effective. If two computers send print jobs simultaneously, there would be no conflicts.. the one computer that was a few milliseconds slower in sending would have to "wait in line" for the print queue. Same with a LAN or wireless link.

Don't understand: LAN = Local Area Network" - If I use the item:
"Planet Multi-port USB/Parallel Fast Ethernet Print Server"
http://www.l-com.com/item.aspx?id=9216
I'd be *interfering* with the current set-up (using the router) wouldn't I?

Also: Do you mean all 3 methods (below) would negate conflicts (if 2 prints job were sent simultaneously, etc.) or only the LAN setup?
1. 7-port powered USB hub (2.0) (with A --- A USB cables) - each from 1 computer)
2. "2PORT USB 2.0 AUTO PRINTER SHARE A PRINTER OR USB DEVICE"
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=BH3707&vp ... ure=IOGEAR
3. "Planet Multi-port USB/Parallel Fast Ethernet Print Server"
http://www.l-com.com/item.aspx?id=9216

I.E. Would there be conflicts with a 7-port USB powered hub - (#1 above) or a 2-port auto printer share usb device / switch (#2 above) and no conflicts with the "Planet Multi-port USB/Parallel Fast Ethernet Print Server" (#3 above)
[...]
Karlsweldt wrote:The Windows XP version requires SP3 to be considered "active" or acceptable for use. You have another 3 years (approximately) for extended service life.

I am trying to find / buy memory for the SP2 HP PC....
so I can upgrade it to SP3

Printer:
"PIXMA MP240"
http://www.canon.ca/inetCA/arcproducts?m=gp&pid=3123
Thanks!
*tanya*
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Postby evasive » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:52 pm

memory for the HP (UK):
http://www.crucial.com/uk/upgrade/compa ... /list.html

or if you are in the US:
http://www.crucial.com/store/ListParts. ... n%20a1100n

The print server does only connect your USB-printer to the Ethernet network and will NOT interfere with your internet-networking stuff.

You simply connect its Ethernet side to the network and all computers (provided they have the printer driver installed) can use the printer. You can leave out the USB hub that way.
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Postby *tanya* » Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:06 am

Hi,
So glad this is still open...
[...below...]


I am in Canada: The only place I can get it for a reasonable shipping price is
"NCIX.com - Canada's Premier Computer Store - Online PC Discount Store, Buy Computer Accessories"
http://www.ncix.com/

The print server does only connect your USB-printer to the Ethernet network and will NOT interfere with your internet-networking stuff.

I don't understand the above:
You simply connect its Ethernet side to the network and all computers (provided they have the printer driver installed) can use the printer. You can leave out the USB hub that way.

I have 2 that I would use.
They both have the printer drivers.
Both print when I hook each (one-at-a-time) up (USB) to the printer.

I have the router (with the USB printer port)

I also have (in the meantime) 9 threats (viruses) on 1 of them which are all contained in the virus chest.
(Having stupidly run as per someones suggestion Combofix)

So I am still trying to get help reversing combofix and don't want to do too much to the computer to negate this possibility.
Plus I don't want to infect (with what?) the other one.

BTW the SP2 (256 MB RAM) is staying out of this right now....

I am rescanning the "sick" PC (boot and normal) but is there a danger of spreading (I don't see what it would spread) anything.... if they share the printer?
It runs fine except for Combofix related...


THANKS!
*tanya*
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Postby Hardware Junkie » Sun Jun 26, 2011 10:10 am

Tigerdirect.ca is not a bad site as well.
Just search for "USB Print Server"

http://www.tigerdirect.ca/applications/ ... &CatId=206

Diagram:

Image


If you picked up a router with a USB port on it - First, verify it actually works. Go to the product page for the device and make sure its not there for future revisions. I have seen a few where the USB port did nothing.
If it was advertised as a USB print server, then it should be fine.
Plug your printer into it.

Your router should have a display page for the print server which displays the IP address on the network. If not your router will have come with software to setup the printer.
If you have the printer IP, you can open the existing installed printer icon from the printers control panel and add a port.

Image

All you need to do is add the IP address and hit ok. It should print to it.
If not, delete your printer and use the software included with the router - or download from the web.


Side note: Never heard of Combofix. I'd use MalwareBytes or SuperAntiSpyware.
If either of those don't do it, reinstall the computer because it will take less time.
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Postby evasive » Sun Jun 26, 2011 12:07 pm

ComboFix is especially effective against all variants of SmitFraud, at nasty piece of malware. I have used it with great success before cleaning out the remainders with malwarebytes...
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Postby Toby B. » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:24 pm

evasive wrote:ComboFix is especially effective against all variants of SmitFraud, at nasty piece of malware. I have used it with great success before cleaning out the remainders with malwarebytes...
But like any other tool, if not used properly it can cause more problems
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