Wednesday, 17 September 2008

New netgear print server, easier said than done

After the failure of a JetDirect server on one of our workgroup printers, I purchased a NetGear PS101 mini print server to replace it. We have had joy with a similar D-link machine on another printer, so I was confident this would work.

It did work, but not without some fiddling around.

To start with, the server management software would not install on our Windows 2003 domain server. I didn't chase down why because I didn't want to have to use it anyway. It had something to do with the 16-bit subsystem. But it was a bad start.

Thanks to this thread on the netgear forums I was able to get things working to my satisfaction, and without having to use the print server software. Here's the summary.
  1. Discover the IP address the DHCP server had allocated to the print server, log into the web interface and then set a permanent IP address.
  2. Go to Printers and Faxes and "add a new printer". When asked for a port, create a new one.
  3. Choose "standard tcp/ip port"
  4. Set the IP address to the one you fixed.
  5. Do not try to select a particular print server or network card, just use the "choose generic network card" option.
  6. Finish creating the printer as normal.
  7. Go to the properties of that printer, go to the Port tab and then select "port properties" of the port you created.
  8. Set the protocol to LPR, make the queue name "L1" and enable "LPR byte counting".
  9. It took me a while to realise this, but I needed to reset the printer before continuing. Check the status page of the online management and if you see "offline" or something similar then a reset will probably solve that problem.
This took far too long to sort out today. When I installed the D-link earlier this year it only took minutes. But it is working now and is likely to stay that way. Good.