If you send documents or print jobs to a network printer, people often receive an error message that Windows can not connect to the printer. Often an access-accompanying error message is rejected, while sometimes only the error is shown. There are many reasons why it pops up on Windows, but most of it depends on the configuration.
To fix the error, first, check whether the network printer is connected to the LAN port or whether the printer is connected to another system and shared on the network. Accordingly, you have to solve the question differently. You may use the following measures for troubleshooting network printers as a reference.
Troubleshooting Steps for Shared Network Printer
Try these steps if the printer is physically connected to the system and shared on the computer, and you’re trying to add the device to another PC on the network.
- Click the Start button, search for Add Printer in the Start Menu search box, and click the link that appears in the Search Results box.
- When the Add Printer wizard is opened, you need to select which printer to configure. To do this, select a network printer or a printer attached to another computer.
- Then click the Next button and select Connect to this printer. Under the name, you need to type the path to your shared printer using the special \ characters followed by the name of the PC to which the device is shared, followed by the name of the printer.
You need to be able to connect to a shared printer. However, if you get the above error, you can try adding your printer as a local device. To do this, follow the steps below to resolve printer issues. Use these steps only if the printer is attached to another system and shared on the network.
- You need to select a local printer attached to this computer checkbox from the Add Printer wizard and uncheck the checkbox below.
- In the next window, click Create a new port check box, and then select Local Port from the drop-down list next to the checkbox. Click the Next button, and you will be prompted to enter the Port Name key. In the graphical Port Name box, you have to type the printer path key.
Network Printer Troubleshooting
If you have a printer connected to a wireless or LAN network, follow the steps below to fix that Windows can not connect to a printer error.
- Select the Local Printer checkbox attached to this computer and then choose the checkbox to create a new port, as mentioned in the previous step. You need to select Standard TCP or IP Port instead of selecting a Local Port from the drop-down.
- Then the key in the IP address of the printer. If you don’t remember the IP address, take a printout of the printer configuration sheet. You should be able to do this directly from the printer menu – check the user manual provided by the printer manufacturer if you have any doubts.
Enable Windows Firewall File and Printer Sharing
You can not connect to the printer if the Windows Firewall prevents the connection. Ensure that an exception is made for printer and file sharing on the machine and Laptop to which the system is linked via Windows Firewall. Follow the steps below to enable the option.
- Press the Windows button, and from the Start menu, open the Control Panel.
- Choose Windows Firewall from the Control Panel and click Exceptions.
- Ensure that the File and Printer Sharing checkbox has a tick mark on it. If you don’t, select the checkbox. This will make sure that the application does not block the connection.
Update the Drivers for Printer
If you add a device to a Windows 7 PC and the system that hosts a printer has Windows Vista or XP, you will encounter a printer error. In that case, you should download the Windows 7 driver from the manufacturer’s website and install it on your host computer. If you are trying to connect from Windows 7 to a printer, the driver for the operating system should be available for installation from the host PC.
Disable Antivirus Software that Block Connections
If a virus has been installed on your computer and the connection is blocked, turn off the software and then try to connect to the regular printer. If the root cause behind the link issue is the blocking feature of the antivirus, the device should be disabled.
If you are still unable to connect to a printer error while printing on a network environment, please get in touch with our tech support professionals via the toll-free number above for advanced network printer troubleshooting.