How to Share a Printer on Windows 11

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This post shows students and new users steps to share a printer in Windows 11. In Windows 11, you can add a new printer, and share it with others on the same network, whether at home or in the office.

There are two methods one can use to share a printer. If you have a network printer, and is connected to your network via a router or switch, then all PCs should be able to directly connect to the printer and add it individually.

However, if the printer is not a network printer, but attached or installed directly to one PC in the home, then you can share it on the PC it’s connected to with other PCs in the home or office. For others to add and print to the printer, make sure the printer is connected to the primary PC either wirelessly or by using a USB cable, and then turn on the printer.

Also make sure the primary PC is turned on, connected to the printer, and connected to the network.

Once all the requirements are checked above, use the steps below to share the printer so other can print to it.

To get started with sharing printer on Windows 11, follow the steps below.

How to share a printer in Windows 11

Again, one can share a printer connected to a PC with other users in a home network or office. You’ll need to know the name of the primary PC ( the PC the printer is connected to).

To share a printer, it should already be installed and connected to the primary PC. If you haven’t installed the printer, use the post below to learn how to add a printer on Windows 11.

How to add a printer on Windows 11

Once the printer is installed and ready, use the steps below to share it with others.

Windows 11 has a centralized location for majority of its settings. From system configurations to creating new users and updating Windows, all can be done from its System Settings pane.

To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + i shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings as shown in the image below:

windows 11 settings button

Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.

Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In Windows Settings, click Bluetooth & devices, then select Printers & scanners on the right pane of your screen shown in the image below.

windows 11 add new scanners

Next, click on the tile of the printer you want to share. If you have multiple printers installed on your PC, they should all be listed on this pane.

windows 11 share a printer with others

Once the printer detail pane opens, select Printer Properties tile as highlighted below.

windows 11 share printer properties pane

On the pop up windows, under the Sharing tab, click Change Sharing option as highlighted below.

windows 11 change sharing options 1

Finally, check the box next to: Share this printer to share the printer. In the Share name box, type in a shared name that other PCs will see when connecting to the printer. The name can be descriptive to identify the particular printer.

windows 11 share this printer settings

If you want, edit the share name of the printer. You’ll use this name to connect to the printer from a secondary PC.

The printer should be shared and ready for other PCs to connect and add it.

How to connect to a shared printer on Windows 11

Now that the printer is shared above, if you want to printer to it from another PC in the same network, use the steps below.

Read this post below to learn how to add a printer on Windows 11

How to add a printer on Windows 11

When adding a shared printer on another PC,

  1. If you don’t see the printer you want, select The printer that I want isn’t listed
  2. In the Add printer dialog box, select Select a shared printer by name, and then enter the computer or device name of the primary PC and the share name of the printer using one of these formats:
    • \\computername\printername
    • http://computername/printername/.printer
  3. When prompted to install the printer driver, select Next to complete the installation.
windows 11 share printer by name

By default, you need the user name and password of the primary PC to access the printer.

Once all is connected and added, you should be able to print to the printer from the secondary PCs on your network.

That should do it!

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to share a printer on Windows 11 as well as connecting to a shared printer. If you find any error above or have something to add, please use the comment form below.

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