Connect to a printer on a network

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

To connect to a printer on a network

  1. Open Printers and Faxes.

  2. Double-click Add Printer to start the Add Printer Wizard, and then click Next.

  3. Click A network printer, or a printer attached to another computer, and then click Next.

  4. Connect to the desired printer using one of the following three methods.

    Searching for it in the Active Directory

    If you are not logged on to a domain running Active Directory, this method will not be available.

    1. Click Find a printer in the Directory, and then click Next.

      If needed, change the default printer location listed in the Location field by clicking the Location Browse button, and then choosing the appropriate location.

    2. Click Find Now.

    3. In the list that appears, click the printer you want to connect to, and then click OK.

    Typing the printer name or browsing for it

    1. Click Connect to this printer, or click Next to browse for a printer.

    2. Do one of the following:

      • Type the printer name using the following format, and then click Next:


      • Browse for it on the network by clicking Next, locating the printer in Shared printers, and then clicking Next.

    Connecting to an Internet or intranet printer

    Connecting to a printer using its URL allows you to connect to printers across the Internet, provided you have permission to use that printer. If you cannot connect to your printer using the general URL format above, please see your printer's documentation or contact your network administrator.

    1. Click Connect to a printer on the Internet or on a home or office network.

    2. Type the URL to the printer using the following format, and then click Next:


  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to finish connecting to the printer.

    The icon for the printer appears in your Printers and Faxes folder.


  • To open Printers and Faxes, click Start, and then click Printers and Faxes.

  • You can also connect to a printer by dragging the printer from the Printers and Faxes folder on the print server and dropping it into your Printers and Faxes folder, or by right-clicking the icon and then clicking Connect.

  • After you have connected to a shared printer on the network, you can use it as if it were attached to your computer.

Information about functional differences

  • Your server might function differently based on the version and edition of the operating system that is installed, your account permissions, and your menu settings. For more information, see Viewing Help on the Web.

See Also


Connect to a printer on a NetWare server