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5 Ways to Convert a Wired Printer into a Wireless One

by Geek Insider Staff
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Now you can convert your wired printer into a wireless one. 

Wired printers’ popularity grew when most homes had only one desktop. Fast forward, and advanced technology has brought computers into our pockets. 

To use the wired printer, you must physically connect wires to your PC. This is pretty difficult and inconvenient, especially if you want to print a document from your smartphone. 

Updating your wired printer into a wireless one would be the most feasible strategy, and here are five ways to do it. 

  1. Connect with USB

If you want to convert your wired printer, the first thing should be to connect it to a router through USB. This is because modern routers come with a USB port that lets them act as a server for your network. When you insert a USB drive into the router’s port, it makes the router a USB host. This means that all devices connected to the router will access the printer. Similarly, any connected device can use that USB drive as network-attached file storage.  

The same case happens when you attach the printer to the router. Simply change the router settings from NAS to printer server mode and print files from your smartphones, laptops, and tablets. If the router has only one USB port, don’t think of attaching a hub to use the router as a storage and print server simultaneously- this will confuse the system. The single USB port can only function as a storage or print server-not both. 

  1. Check for Ethernet Port

If your router has only one USB port, you can still use the printer’s Ethernet port to make it wireless. This feature is common among business printer models used in corporations printing massive documents from different sources. 

Connect the printer to your local network by linking its Ethernet port to one of the router’s LAN slots. This way, all devices connected to the router’s Wi-Fi can detect and print. 

Although the two still connect via a LAN cable, you don’t have to physically connect your smartphone or laptop to use the printer. You only need to connect to the router’s Wi-Fi to access the printer wirelessly. 

You can also use the Ethernet to Wi-Fi adapter to connect the router with your compatible printer. The adapter transmits data wirelessly and channels it through the Ethernet port. So, a short Ethernet cable should function well as long as the home’s Wi-Fi signal covers the printer.

  1. Use a Wireless Adapter

Printer manufacturers used to make adapters for every type of wired printer. All you need is to find and attach the correct wireless adapter for your printer model. The adapter comes in handy for people using USB printers with no Ethernet ports. 

Unfortunately, manufacturers rarely produce these adapters anymore, as they no longer produce the old printer models. So, finding a brand-new wireless adapter would be a hassle. Nonetheless, the most important thing is to ensure that the adapter you purchase is compatible with your printer. 

It’s worth noting, though, that the low supply of these products has seen their prices skyrocket. You’ll come across wireless printer adapters costing more than a brand-new wireless printer. Do the math and canvass around for cheaper alternatives before committing to anything.  

  1. Get a Print Server

A dedicated print server is the best solution for the issues addressed in the 3 above. Use it when you can’t find the right wireless adapter for your printer or if the one you find is costly. The server is also helpful if your printer lacks an Ethernet plug or your router lacks a USB port. 

The dedicated print server acts as a computer or smartphone, attaching to the router via Ethernet. It’s also connected to the printer through a USB drive. 

The server’s sole responsibility is to process print functions and send them to the printer. This works the same as the wireless adapter, but it’s compatible with an array of models. Besides, print servers are typically provided by networking companies and are more affordable. 

  1. Use Your Printer Via Your Computer

If you don’t use your printers regularly or don’t want to get involved in setups, you can use your printer by connecting it to your computer. As long as the two are connected to the same network, you can use the PC to print wirelessly. 

Note that you must turn on the computer and connect it to the network. It would be best if you also studied the setup, especially when connecting different systems, like an iPhone and Windows PC.  

If you only print rarely, connecting your printer with your PC remains the best solution since the system is pretty easy with Windows 10 and 11. 

Print Wirelessly

The increasing number of wireless gadgets makes it necessary to convert your wired printer into a wireless one. Wireless printers have no port compatibility issues. 

If you have a wired printer, your case is half-solved. Choose from the methods highlighted here and print wirelessly without acquiring a new printer model.

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