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Windows Home Server as an iOS Print Server - AirPrint Compatibility Not Required


tinkererguy
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I would guess that some of you use your Windows Home Server 2011 for print serving, especially if you have a USB-only printer that you wish to share out with the home network, 24x7.

 

What if you also want to allow any iOS devices to print as well, such as the iPhone or iPad?

 

Turns out, iOS 5.0 temporarily broke some workarounds folks had found for iOS 4.2 printing, back in November of 2010. But today, I located a very new blog post with a solution that works with iOS 5.0, with no special apps on the iOS device required. I even works even with some non-AirPrint printers, such as the Brother models I tested. Well worth the $9.99, it's called FingerPrint (for PC or Mac).

 

Here's the caveats from Collobos Software's site (but it does install and work just fine on WHS2011, even if not on the officially supported/tested list):

• FingerPrint requires OS X 10.5, OS X 10.6, Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista, or Windows 7

• iDevices running iOS 4.2 or later will see AirPrint™ enabled printers.

• Not all printers are compatible with AirPrint.™

 

What got me thinking recently was when a member of my family was looking at a great photo on their iPhone, asking for me to print it. Well, I've now removed myself and my PC from that loop, so anybody on my WiFi can now print from their iPhone/iPads for themselves, directly to our USB-based Epson PM 260 photo printer.

 

I wrote up all the details here:

http://tinkertry.com...printforwindows

but I'm curious what you folks think? Perhaps post your success stories here in the forums?

 

fingerprintforwindows.png

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I have a couple of HP175a Ethernet-USB adapters that I use to attach USB printers to my network. We install the print drivers on the client computers, installing as if it's a network printer instead of USB and then just print to the network address. Not sure if something like that would work for this or not.

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Instead of using IP Addresses to create your Port ID's, use the DNS name of the printer. No more worrying about the IP. Any good network printer will have an interface you can log into to change the default DNS name to something more easy to remember.

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I have a network connected Dell 1320c color laser printer. Do I just use fingerprint to print to it? My wife has an ipad 2 and has asked how to do this before. Not being an apple guy I wasnt sure it could be done.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

I have now received news from Collobos, announced Jan 30, 2011. They’ve added FingerPrint for Windows installing as a service, so I tested extensively, and found it now works fine:

Operating Systems Supported by Collobos:

 

Microsoft Windows 7 SP1 (64 bit)

Microsoft Windows XP SP3 (32 bit)

 

Operating Systems I tested:

Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 (64 bit)

Windows Home Server SP2 (based on Windows Server 2003 32 bit)*

Windows Home Server 2011 SP1 (based on Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit)*

Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 Essentials SP1

(based on Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit)*

*Just remember to Add Role, Print and Document Services, Print Server, before installing FingerPrint

 

Colobos hasn't made a big splash about this at their site (yet).

 

For now, it’s still just $10 for FingerPrint for Windows.

 

See all the details and full video (that also shows me "FingerPrinting" on an iPhone screen) at:

http://tinkertry.com/fingerprintforwindows

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  • 10 months later...

I had found this and installed it on my homeserver 2011 system and it was working but then it stopped. Can't figure out why, either. I'll let you know when I find the cause. But when it was working it was great.

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