> I have 2 computers, 1 desktop and 1 laptop. How do I connect the laptop
> to the printer connected to the desktop?
> I tried using the manufacts name but it didn't work
You need to set up file/printer sharing on your Local Area Network (LAN).
Once you have successfully done this - and tested by transferring files
both ways - then you can set up the printer. Go to the printer mftr.'s
website and download the Vista drivers for your specific model printer. Do
this on your laptop. Share out the printer on the Desktop machine and then
go to the laptop and run the printer installer you downloaded.
Here are instructions for setting up your network. Not everything may be
applicable to your situation, so just take the bits that are. It may look
daunting, but if you follow the steps at the links and suggestions below
systematically and calmly, you will have no difficulty in setting up your
sharing. If it looks too complicated (and there's no shame in admitting
this isn't your cup of tea), have a local professional come on-site and set
up your network. It will only take a few minutes. Don't use someone from
BigComputerStore/GeekSquad; get recommendations from family, friends,
Excellent, thorough, yet easy to understand article about File/Printer
Sharing in Vista. Includes details about sharing printers as well as files
For XP, start by running the Network Setup Wizard on all machines (see
caveat in Item A below).
Problems sharing files between computers on a network are generally caused
by 1) a misconfigured firewall; or 2) inadvertently running two firewalls
such as the built-in Windows Firewall and a third-party firewall; and/or 3)
not having identical user accounts and passwords on all Workgroup machines;
4) trying to create shares where the operating system does not permit it.
A. Configure firewalls on all machines to allow the Local Area Network (LAN)
traffic as trusted. With Windows Firewall, this means allowing File/Printer
Sharing on the Exceptions tab. Normally running the Network Setup Wizard on
XP will take care of this for those machines.The only "gotcha" is that this
will turn on the XPSP2 Windows Firewall. If you aren't running a
third-party firewall or have an antivirus with "Internet Worm
Protection" (like Norton 2006/07) which acts as a firewall, then you're
fine. With third-party firewalls, I usually configure the LAN allowance
with an IP range. Ex. would be 192.168.1.0-192.168.1.254. Obviously you
would substitute your correct subnet. Do not run more than one firewall.
B. For ease of organization, put all computers in the same Workgroup. This
is done from the System applet in Control Panel, Computer Name tab.
C. Create matching user accounts and passwords on all machines. You do not
need to be logged into the same account on all machines and the passwords
assigned to each user account can be different; the accounts/passwords just
need to exist and match on all machines. If you wish a machine to boot
directly to the Desktop (into one particular user's account) for
convenience, you can do this. The instructions at this link work for both
XP and Vista:
Configure Windows to Automatically Login (MVP Ramesh) -
D. If one or more of the computers is XP Pro or Media Center:
1. If you need Pro's ability to set fine-grained permissions, turn off
Simple File Sharing (Folder Options>View tab) and create identical user
accounts/passwords on all computers.
2. If you don't care about using Pro's advanced features, leave the Simple
File Sharing enabled. Simple File Sharing means that Guest (network) is
enabled. This means that anyone without a user account on the target system
can use its resources. This is a security hole but only you can decide if
it matters in your situation.
E. Create shares as desired, including sharing the printer.
Elephant Boy Computers