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How to Connect a Printer to a Laptop

In today’s day and age, almost every document and file is presented in a digital form. iPads and tablets are people’s new pseudo paper friends. 

But sometimes, you can’t avoid the need for an actual hard copy, an actual printed document. And for that, you would require the help of a Printer. You will need to connect it to your PC or laptop for optimum use. 

And this is where the question of, how to connect a printer to a laptop comes into the equation. 

Worry not, this question and other questions like, “How to connect my canon printer to the laptop?” “How to connect HP printer to a laptop with USB?” or “How to connect a printer to computer wirelessly?” will be put to rest today in this article.

What One Needs to Do to Connect a Printer to a Laptop?

Firstly ensure that both your laptop and printer are compatible with each other. And both of these devices should also be in optimal working condition.

You have two choices with your printer: Either connect it locally or through a wireless connection. Choose whichever one suits your needs the best.

These are the steps that you need to follow:

How to Connect A Laptop to a local Printer?

Connect the printer to your computer using the USB cable and turn it on.

Step 1: Using the USB cable, connect your printer to your computer and turn it on.

Step 2: Click on the Start Menu and open Settings.

Image source: laptopmag

Step 3: Click on Devices.

Image source: laptopmag

Step 4: Click on Printers & Scanners on the left-hand side, and then select Add a printer or scanner.

Image source: laptopmag

Step 5: Windows would start detecting your printer. If it detects it successfully, click on its name and start following the on-screen instructions to finish the installation. This way, you are finished with connecting the printer to your computer.

But if Windows is unable to detect your printer, then you need to follow some more steps:

Step 1: Click on “The printer that I want isn’t listed” below the Add printers & scanners tab. (It is highlighted in blue)

Image source: laptopmag

Step 2: Windows troubleshooting guide would start finding your printer. It would search for all the printers available and help you in downloading drivers.

Image source: laptopmag

And if all this doesn’t work either, you need to go to your printer manufacturer’s website. From there, you need to download the drivers and install the tools for your printer. 

How to Connect a Laptop to a Printer Wirelessly?

Connect a Printer to Wi-Fi Network: 

Wireless printers require a connection over a network to work correctly. It’s always an internet connection or Wi-Fi connection. That means if you are using your wireless printer at home, you would connect it to your own wireless internet connection. And if you are planning to use a printer in the office, it’d be your office network.

Before you start doing anything, please read the printer manual and follow the manufacturer’s directions.

These are some basic steps to configure internet access on your printer:

Step 1: Turn on your laptop and the Wi-Fi router (or another internet connection source).

Step 2: Power on the printer.

Step 3: Go to the Printer control panel and click on wireless setup settings.

Step 4: You need to select the SSID, i.e., Service Set Identifier of your Wi-Fi network. 

Step 5: Now, enter the Security password of your Wi-Fi network. It is the WPA passphrase or WEP key of the Wi-Fi router.

Step 6: And when the printer connects to the Wi-Fi, the wireless light on it will turn on. 

Add a Printer to Windows 10 Laptop:

Step 1: Turn on the printer

Step 2: Either click on the Start menu and select Settings, and then Devices. Or you can open the search text box in Windows and type “printer”.

Image source: wikiHow

Step 3: Select Printers & Scanners.

Image source: wikiHow

Step 4: Then click on Add a printer or scanner.

Step 5: Windows would start detecting the available printers. Choose your wireless printer from the resulting list.

Step 6: Now click on your printer’s name, and choose the Add device.

Image source: wikiHow

Step 7: Just wait for a while until Windows sets up all the necessary drivers and adds the printer. 

Step 8: You might be prompt by Windows to install additional software. If that happens, click on Get App. This way, you’ll be able to download and install the software from the Microsoft store.

Step 9: After the setup completion, the laptop is able to print through the wireless printer over the shared internet network. 

But if the printer wasn’t recognized by Windows, you need to follow other steps:

This could be happening because the laptop and printer aren’t using the same network. Check on that before performing these steps.

Step 1: Return back to Printers & Scanners.

Step 2: Click on Add a printer or scanner.

Step 3: Now choose the link “The printer I want isn’t listed”, located below the Refresh option.

Step 4:  From the newly opened pop up window, choose the option Add a Bluetooth, wireless or network discoverable printer.

Step 5: Select your wireless printer.

Step 6: Finally, your laptop is connected with your printer. Close the Settings.

Add a Printer to Windows 8 and 7 Laptop:

Step 1: Click on Start and choose Devices and Printers.

Step 2: Click on Add a printer.

Step 3: Add Printer Wizard would open up, choose to Add a network, wireless or Bluetooth printer.

Step 4: You’ll get a list of printers available, choose your printer from it.

Step 5: Select Next.

Step 6: You might have to install a printer driver. If that is the case, click on the Install driver.

Step 7: Complete and perform all the steps in the wizard.

Step 8: Finally, click on Finish.

And after performing all of the above steps mentioned, you can print whatever document or file you would like by just following a very basic procedure.

Now, I would like to believe that any of your doubts like, “How to connect a printer to laptop or computer wirelessly?” have been solved. And you are completely able to print all your desired files through your printer.

About author

Diksha Lalwani is an aspiring content marketer and a self-declared bibliophile. An English honors graduate, she likes to keep up with the recent happenings around the world and form an opinion. Her interest in anything and everything tech made her follow the path into becoming a technical writer.
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