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Helpful Computer stuff

I’m redoing my computer system at home after much craziness with my windows machines. It was one of the things that pushed me to get a Mac. Anyway, I’m trying to make everything all happy with three PCs and a Mac.

  • I want the printer to be available to all computers even if some of them are sleeping
  • I want a large hard drive to store all my itunes stuff, including movies, music, and apps
  • I want access to printer or hard drive, by any computer, to be wireless


So I got an Airport Extreme. It has a USB port on it that you can connect a hub to. Then you can put whatever you want on the hub, although I have so far only tried a printer and a hard drive.

With the Mac this set up with less brain cells required than I use to pee. I didn’t have to do anything for it to work. Different story for the windows machines. A disk comes with it that contains software (Airport Extreme Base Station Agent) that lets your PC see the hard drive attached to it. This worked pretty well, and I do not recall much of an issue as long as I set up the AirPort Extreme with the mac first.

Printing is a different story. I tried the method that apple suggested using the Bonjour Printer Wizard. It didn’t work at all. It set up just fine, but it would not print.

I found this to be the most helpful advice as to how to do it, but I would add a few steps.

  • Make sure you have installed the latest drivers for your printer
  1. Make sure the printer is recognized by the base station.
  2. Select 'Add a new printer' in Windows
  3. Select 'Local Printer' in the dialog box (auto detect and install should be off), click next.
  4. Choose 'Create a new port' and "Standard TCP/IP Port'. Click next.
  5. For the printer IP address, enter the address of the base station ie. The port name will be filled automatically. Click next.
  6. For the device type, choose 'Hewlet Packard Jet Direct', then click Finish.
  7. Choose your printer from the list and follow the rest of the prompts to install and configure the driver.
  • When it asks you if you want to use the existing driver or the new one, choose ‘existing’


This worked really well for me on the first shot. I wrote this blog post so I could get to it from the other two PC. LOL. Next I will back up the wireless drive to one of the local drives using scheduling backup software.

I hope this post helps someone, somewhere, at some time.

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