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Add a printer attached to your computer

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

To add a printer attached to your computer

  1. Connect the printer to the appropriate port on your computer according to the printer manufacturer's documentation, and verify that it is ready to print.

  2. Although Windows automatically detects and installs most printers, you might need to provide additional information to complete the installation. Choose from the following, depending on the type of printer you have.

    Install a parallel port (LPT) attached printer

    Install a USB or IEEE 1394 printer

    Install an infrared printer

Install a parallel port (LPT) attached printer

If your printer attaches to your computer with a parallel port (LPT port), connect the printer to your computer, and then open Printers and Faxes. Double-click Add Printer to start the Add Printer Wizard, and then click Next. Click Local printer attached to this computer, make sure the Automatically detect and install my Plug and Play printer check box is selected, and then click Next. Depending on the printer you are installing, a Found New Hardware message or the Found New Hardware Wizard appears to notify you that the printer has been detected and that installation has begun. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the printer installation. (You do not need to continue with the following instructions.)

Alternatively, after connecting your printer, you can start or restart your computer to allow your operating system to automatically detect and start the Found New Hardware Wizard.

The printer icon will be added to your Printers and Faxes folder.

Install a USB or IEEE 1394 printer

If you install a universal serial bus (USB) or IEEE 1394 printer, your Windows Server 2003 family operating system detects it and automatically starts the Found New Hardware Wizard. You do not need to shut down or restart your computer; just follow the instructions on the screen to finish the setup.

The printer icon will be added to your Printers and Faxes folder.

Install an infrared printer

If you install an infrared printer, it is automatically detected and installed. You do not need to shut down or restart your computer. First, make sure that the infrared-enabled computer and the printer are turned on. Then, position the computer and printer within approximately 1 meter of each other to establish a wireless infrared connection. After several seconds, the computer recognizes the printer, and the appropriate drivers are installed on the computer. If the drivers are not installed, you will be prompted to insert a manufacturer's disk containing the drivers. (You do not need to continue with the rest of the steps in this topic.)

The printer icon will be added to your Printers and Faxes folder.

If your computer is not infrared-capable, you can attach an infrared transceiver to your serial (COM) port. For more information, see Related Topics.

  1. If you could not install your printer using Plug and Play, or if the printer is attached to your computer with a serial (COM) port, then open Printers and Faxes.

  2. Double-click Add Printer to start the Add Printer Wizard, and then click Next.

  3. Clear the Automatically detect and install my Plug-n-Play printer check box to avoid having to wait for the completion of another printer search.

  4. Click Local printer attached to this computer, and then click Next.

  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to finish setting up the printer by selecting a printer port, selecting the manufacturer and model of your printer, and typing a name for your printer.

    In Windows Server 2003 family products, the Add Printer Wizard shares the printer and publishes it in Active Directory by default, unless you select Do not share this printer in the wizard's Printer Sharing screen. The Add Printer Wizard does not share the printer automatically on a computer running Windows XP Professional. You need to select Share as to share and publish the printer.

Notes

  • To open Printers and Faxes, click Start, and then click Printers and Faxes.

  • Infrared functionality is not present on the following operating systems: Windows XP 64-bit Edition (Itanium); 64-bit version of Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition; and 64-bit version of Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition.

  • If you add and set up a Plug-and-Play printer (for example, USB, IEEE 1394, LPT, or Infrared), you do not need to have administrative credentials. However, to add and set up a non-Plug-and-Play printer connected directly to your computer, you must be logged on as an administrator or a member of the Administrators group. If your computer is connected to a network, network policy settings may also prevent you from completing this procedure.

  • If you intend to share the printer with client computers running operating systems other than Windows XP or Windows 2000, you need to install the appropriate printer drivers for these clients on the print server. When clients running Windows NT 4.0, Windows 95, and Windows 98 connect to the printer, the server automatically downloads the correct driver to the client.

  • When you are adding a new printer that is connected to a computer and the Add Printer Wizard prompts you to select the printer port, you normally select from the Existing list one of the parallel (LPT) ports. For some plotters you might need to select one of the serial (COM) ports.

  • The following Group Policy settings can change the default behavior of the Windows Server 2003 family Server Add Printer Wizard:

    Allow printers to be published is enabled by default; you can disable it to prevent printers from being published.

    Automatically publish new printers in the Active Directory is enabled by default; you can disable it to prevent the Add Printer Wizard from automatically publishing printers when adding a new printer.

    Browse the network to find printers is enabled by default; you can disable it to prevent the Add Printer Wizard from browsing the network for shared printers.

Information about functional differences

  • Your server might function differently based on the version and edition of the operating system that is installed, your account permissions, and your menu settings. For more information, see Viewing Help on the Web.

See Also

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