Looking For A Print Server

Discussion in 'Networking & Security' started by parityboy, Dec 26, 2018.

  1. parityboy

    parityboy Limp Gawd

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    I currently have a Linux VM running on an old iMac for print server duty. The iMac is actually quite power hungry and since it's too old for iOS development, I would like to decommission it. That being said, I now need something else to handle print server duty. I've see a couple of wireless USB print server units from D-Link, HP and StarTech, but can anyone recommend one?

    Thanks. :)
     
  2. BlueLineSwinger

    BlueLineSwinger Gawd

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    What about a Raspberry Pi? Your current config should simply transfer over.
     
  3. parityboy

    parityboy Limp Gawd

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    That's actually a good idea: I never remember those small devices. :) Definitely worth a look. Thanks! :D
     
  4. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    I hope the OP doesn't mind if I jump in on this thread. My home LAN is all Windows 10, all Wi-FI. I used to use a very old D-Link router as a print server to connect to my HP 400dn printer which has a Ethernet connection but no Wi-Fi. But the D-Link died a few months ago, and I've discovered that sharing the printer off my system is very inconvenient for all the other systems on the home LAN. So I need a low-cost print server or router that supports bridge mode.

    I don't need anything fancy, as long as the server (or low-cost router) speaks WPA2 in bridge mode. 5.0 GHz support and 802.11ac support are nice to have, but I can't spend big bucks just for a print server.

    Thanks in advance for suggestions.

    x509
     
  5. parityboy

    parityboy Limp Gawd

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    x509

    I don't mind at all. :D

    I did a quick search on eBay and it yielded these results. :)
     
  6. Eickst

    Eickst [H]ard|Gawd

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    Sorry this may be a dumb question, but if you have a network printer why do you need a print server? Just direct print to it
     
  7. rtangwai

    rtangwai [H]ard|Gawd

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    He never said he had a network printer, just a print server. If the printer is USB-only then OP needs a print server for multiple devices to access.
     
  8. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Actually this printer is both USB 2 and Ethernet. Problem is, my entire LAN is now Wi-Fi based, so I need an inexpensive box that speaks WiFi and either Ethernet or USB (or both). Plus support for WPA2 and bridge mode.

    I want to get something currently on sale for hopefully up to date security via a firmware update. Too many bad actors out there.
     
  9. swatbat

    swatbat [H]ardForum Junkie

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    As long as you are just doing some basic printing something like this isn't a bad idea. If you are printing big files though it can be an issue.
     
  10. IdiotInCharge

    IdiotInCharge [H]ardForum Junkie

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    So you just need a wifi bridge then...?
     
  11. The Lurker

    The Lurker [H]ardForum Junkie

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  12. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Yes.
     
  13. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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  14. rtangwai

    rtangwai [H]ard|Gawd

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    Good suggestion, although it won't power from the printer's USB port as most printers have USB-A connectors and normally don't provide power at all.

    OP, how far away is the printer from the nearest switch/router? If you can run an Ethernet cable then you don't need the bridge at all, the WAP/router itself acts as the bridge.
     
  15. The Lurker

    The Lurker [H]ardForum Junkie

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    If it helps, I have that one and it works great.
     
  16. BlueLineSwinger

    BlueLineSwinger Gawd

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    Eh, unless maybe you've got some OMG-complex docs the only limiting factor really is storage space for the print spooler. Use a large enough microSD card and it's not an issue. CUPS doc conversion/filtering doesn't take a lot of effort, really. If all these dinky little devices from the likes of TP-Link, Netgear, etc. can do it, a RPi certainly can.
     
  17. Dead Parrot

    Dead Parrot 2[H]4U

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    Some NAS units include the ability to connect and share a printer. On the off chance any of the folks needing a print server have or are considering adding a NAS.
     
  18. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    The router is on the first floor of the house but the printer is in a home office on the second floor. Ethernet is not an option since I don't want to bust open the walls.
     
  19. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    To answer this post, I have four systems in my home LAN, and two are laptops that move around a lot. I'm totally committed to WiFi at this point.
     
  20. Eickst

    Eickst [H]ard|Gawd

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    I print from my laptop to a printer on the network all the time, so not sure what you mean. The printer has an IP on the lan, you just set up the printer with an IP port and print over the network.
     
  21. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    My printer is an HP 400dn. It has only USB and Ethernet, but not WiFi.

    x509
     
  22. IdiotInCharge

    IdiotInCharge [H]ardForum Junkie

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    So you haven't picked up a wifi bridge yet?
     
    pendragon1 likes this.
  23. pendragon1

    pendragon1 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    ^ that is probably your simplest solution. add one to your wifi network, plug the printer in, give printer a fixed ip and point systems to it.
     
  24. x509

    x509 [H]ard|Gawd

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    Not yet. Just yesterday just made a decision to go all-in on streaming and I'm reading that I might need a much stronger router because of the distance between the router and our bedroom. So if that happens, I woluld repurpose the current router as a bridge.
     
  25. pek

    pek prairie dog

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    My QNAP NAS's have print server capability using a usb2 connection to the printer. So if you need an NAS and a print server, that's the way to go.