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Network World - How do I add the Microsoft TCP/IP Printing Service to WinXP system?
-- Richard Mijokovich
The good news this is done by default. To verify this, I installed XP from scratch on a new system and it was there once all the updates/reboots had been completed. When creating a new TCP/IP based printer entry, all you need to do is to select "Create a new port" when creating a printer and select "Standard TCP/IP Port." You will next be prompted to enter a IP address for the printer. The port name will automatically be filled in. In most cases, this will be sufficient to get things up and running.
Ideally, the printer should be online when you try to add the new IP printer to your workstation. Ping the printer. This will verify that the printer is properly configured for the network and is connected to the network. The workstation may discover additional information that it will use in properly setting up the printer. You will need to have the printer drivers ready to install once you are prompted for that step.
In most cases, this is all that you will need to do. A few printers require that a special port type exist when trying to print via TCP/IP. The documentation that comes with the printer should tell you if this is necessary. There is an additional Unix printing service that can be installed under Add/Remove Programs / Add/Remove Windows Components. While it can't hurt to install this if you have any doubt, I don't think that you will need it.
There is another option to the above. You can install the printer on one of your servers and then "share" it with the workstations, where you will see it as a normal Windows printer. The plus here is that if you have to change the IP address of the printer or direct the jobs to another printer, it can be done at a central location and you won't have to touch all the workstations that have been configured for this printer.
Read more about small business networking in Network World's Small Business Networking section.