See It In Print

Printers join the wireless pack
Magazine Contributor
1 min read

This story appears in the June 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Your office is on Wi-Fi, and just about every piece of hardware you have is wireless. If that sounds like your business, you'll be interested in extending that network to your printer. A wireless print server is your ticket to ride. It gives you flexibility in the placement of the printer and doesn't require a connected host PC to be on all the time. Most major Wi-Fi equipment makers--Belkin, D-Link, IOGear, Linksys and Netgear--have wireless print servers available.

Specs vary a little from device to device. Actiontec Electronic's $149 54Mbps Wireless Multiport Print Server, for example, supports two USB printers and one parallel port printer at the same time with 802.11g. Hewlett-Packard printer owners can look into HP's Jetdirect 802.11b wireless printer servers. Those run $199 for the internal version or $239 for the external model.

These servers come with typical Wi-Fi security features to keep out snoops. Expect to pay $100 to $300 for a wireless print server. If your whole network is already built around one manufacturer's equipment, check into that manufacturer's wireless print server offerings first. It can help minimize setup issues and make the installation process go smoothly.

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