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Question Win10 laptop can't find network printer

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
First, apologies if this isn't the right forum. It's both hardware and software and seems to be a Win10 or a network issue so I'm posting here and in the Windows forum.

I just bought a new HP color laserjet all in one printer. It's connected via ethernet cable through a desktop switch, then through house hardwires to my router. The Win7 PC next to it which is also hard wired to the same switch and router immediately found the printer and I've printed off of it. 2 iPhones, an iPad and a Macbook Air have also immediately found the printer and we've printed off all of these devices.

My wife has an HP Pavilion laptop running Win10 and it cannot find the printer. Going to Printers and Devices shows a list of printers without the new color laserjet. Choosing Add Printer makes the cursor spin for minutes until it shows a window with no detected printers. Trying to add the printer with the printer's IP address also fails to find it.

Right now I'm just going around in circles with this single device that can't find my new printer. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
 

Muadib

Lifer
May 30, 2000
16,279
294
126
Did you turn on the wireless in the laserjet? Unless your wife's laptop is wired too, I bet a beer that you didn't set up the wireless. You also need to install the driver for the laserjet on your wife's laptop.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,069
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If the Printer is Network Printer connected to the Network on a Router through wire, the Printer's Wireless does not need to be On.

Actually in HP printers it can cause problem. A wireless device can direct connect to the printer and "Stael the wired connection form the other Network devices (it creates two different IPs for the printer).

If there is WIFI on the Router and the Laptop can connected to it, its just a matter of correct Printer sharing.



:cool:
 

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
Thanks for your replies. Muadib, JackMDS explained my understanding of what I've done. The printer is connected to the router with a cable, so the laptop wifi should connect with the printer through my router wifi. And the printer wifi is off.

razel, the laptop's network profile is set to private.

Jack MDS, I'm not up to speed on Win10 yet, my work and home pcs are still, but not for long, on win7. I carefully read and followed the link you provided, thanks for including that. But I'm having no luck. The link has several instructions, I'll list them in order along with what I have done and what happens:

1. Share your printer. It instructs me to go to Settings>Devices>Printers & Scanners. This brings me to the familiar window that shows available printers. The problem here is this instruction for sharing a printer assumes the printer name shows up, but the laptop is not showing the new printer, thus nothing I can share it with.

2. Connect a shared Printer. It directs me to the same window, this time telling me to click on Add a Printer or Scanner. I have also done this before now, no new printers show up, so it instructs me to click on 'The printer that I want isn't listed'. I do that and get another by now familiar dialog box that says 'Find a printer by other options. In that window are 5 options.
2a My printer is a little older, help me find it. Even though the printer is new, if I choose this option it searches, the cursor spins, and I get a blank box with the message that no printers were found.
2b Select a shared printer by name. I enter my computer name and printer name in this format \\computername\printername/.printer. Strangely, when I enter the computer name and the next backslash the name of the new printer shows up in the list of possibilities. I choose the new printer and click next. I get a message that says I have successfully added my new printer. I click on Next, I get a window that says I can print a test page, clicking on that tells me the file was sent to the printer but nothing happens. When I click on Finish the new printer is still not in the list of available printers, I can't choose it, I can't make it the default. I'm back where I started.
2c Add a printer using TCP/IP address or hostname. I know the IP address of my new printer from the printer info screen. And, when I type in that address in my browser I get the HP web pages for my correct printer. So I click on Next. In the next window I leave Device type as Autodetect, I enter the address in the next box and window fills in the Port name automatically, I select Next. It says it is detecting the TCP/IP port, the cursor spins for quite a while until I get the message that the device is not found on the network. I have done this several times and even though I confirm that the device is on the network at this address it doesn't find it.

3.Set up sharing settings I follow the instructions and confirm that my settings are correct according to the link you included.

Sorry for the length, but you can see that I just keep going around in circles with this laptop. If you've stayed with me so far, is there anything else I can do?

Edit: I disabled windows defender firewall since the Microsoft link listed firewall interference as a possible cause. Nothing changed, the new printer is not listed and can't be found.
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
5,523
667
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AIO HP printer model? Turn on Widows 10 SMBv1?

Turning on SMBv1 is the last resort though.

 
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KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
mxnerd, it is a Color Laserjet MFP M281fdw, just bought from Costco. I'll try SMBv1 when I have access to the laptop, it's my wife's work computer and she is using it.
 

mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
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667
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See if this helps. (on HP Printer enable IPv4 only)

 
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KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
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mxnerd, that's an interesting conversation, interesting because originally I set up the printer with wifi connectivity. I had numerous problems that came and went just like that person but the problem I described above with my wife's laptop was the same, it just could not find the printer. I also submitted my problem to the HP forums and within a few hours got some help from two people. I tried their suggestions with limited success and replied to both of them with my results and some questions. Both of them ghosted me, I never heard from them again. After several days I decided that since I had a hard wired internet connection available I would try ethernet connectivity. Once everything was setup I was able to print from the Win7 PC next to the printer, 2 iPhones, an iPad and a Macbook Air. All of them found the new printer immediately but the problem with the Win10 laptop has not changed, no matter what I do the laptop cannot find the new printer. I have also submitted this question to the HP forums but have not had a reply from anyone. There is a lot of traffic on the laserjet forum, my question was pushed to page 2 in about 3 hours, I bumped it back to the top, now about 5 hours later it has been pushed back to page 2 again. I don't have much hope of getting any kind of reply there.

As far as the instruction in that thread to enable IPv4 only, when I access the extended web service by entering the IP address in my browser, I don't see anything described. There is a Network tab but there is no General, no Network Protocols and no place to choose IPv4 only as far as I can tell.
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
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Sometimes it could be that one particular device is not stable.

I used to have a AIO Brother that would just disappear from the network from time to time even if I did not change anything.

I finally had a reason to junk it when the color ink cartridges were clogged and can''t print anymore.
 

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
49,223
5,466
126
All of them found the new printer immediately but the problem with the Win10 laptop has not changed, no matter what I do the laptop cannot find the new printer. I have also submitted this question to the HP forums but have not had a reply from anyone.
So, you originally set up the printer with wireless, and then decided to set it up wired, and most of the PCs and devices found the printer OK when it was wired, but the HP Win10 laptop did NOT?

Have you tried un-installing the laptop's HP driver for that printer (possibly by going to Device Manager, show hidden devices, and then right-clicking on the printer and selecting "Uninstall", and checking the box to "Delete drivers".

Then reboot, and attempt to install the printer wired.

I had to do something similar with my Brother inkjet MFC model, which identifies as a DIFFERENT "node id" on the network, depending on whether the connection is wired or wireless, so if I were to switch between them, I would have to re-install the driver (under Win7 64-bit, I think Win10 will automagically re-detect and re-install the driver. I'll just have two driver instances in the printer chooser box).
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,069
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"It is her work computer"? may be you can find/borrow a regular laptop and try it.


:cool:
 

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
Thanks everyone for the help and suggestions. First I tried enabling SMBv1 suggested by mxnerd. That did nothing, the printer still couldn't be found.

VirtualLarry, yes, out of the box I set up the printer for wireless connectivity but had many problems, intermittent connections with multiple devices. HP community member suggested that the printer was too far from the router. They are at opposite ends of the house but it's not a big place and they are less than 50 feet apart while HP user manual says 100ft is the wireless limit. But when I was at a dead end with wireless and I had a wired connection available I decided to connect the printer directly to the router through its ethernet port. I used the HP software to change from wifi to network connection. This solved all of the intermittent problems with other devices. As I said, I can now print easily from iPhones, iPads, a Macbook Air and the Win7 desktop PC next to the printer. But nothing changed with this Win10 laptop. It can't find the printer by any method.

So I followed your advice and went to Device Manager, clicked on 'Show Hidden Devices' and looked for printers, but there are no printers there to uninstall and no drivers to delete. Any further help? I'm at a dead end.

Edit: One more thing that has happened several times. Sometimes I get a screen that has a list of dozens of printers, old and new from multiple manufacturers. It says to choose my printer from the list. It's not there. When the printer is not there I click on a box that says Windows Update that apparently goes online and finds more printers. Whenever I check that box nothing happens, no new list appears. Yesterday I let it sit for more than 2 hours and nothing. But the Cancel button is inactive, the red X at the top right corner is inactive. I can't get rid of this window without going to Task Manager and forcing it to close.
 
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kornphlake

Golden Member
Dec 30, 2003
1,565
7
81
I can't believe in 2020 printing issues are still a problem, I had issues with windows 10 and a HP laserjet, I'd originally setup the printer connected to USB, but eventually ran some more cable and bought a network switch so I could connect the printer via ethernet. I couldn't find the printer using the wizards in windows 10, I had to manually do some stuff (I don't remember exactly what, I think I had to set a static IP for the printer and point my computer to the static IP,) finally got to the point I could see the printer on my network, but couldn't print because the driver was configured for USB not ethernet there were not any exposed settings to switch the driver to use ethernet, so I uninstalled the driver and reinstalled the driver I'd originally downloaded but it couldn't print a test page, troubleshooting suggested installing an updated driver. I used windows update to fetch the newest driver after atleast 10 minutes of nothing happening it finally began downloading a recommended driver. What I got was some generic driver that let me print a test page, but didn't have options for basic things like printing landscape or double sided. The printer status page provided a link for a driver but it didn't work for windows 10, I had to download a ridiculously large file from HP that included a dozen programs I didn't want or need just to unpackage the windows 10 driver. After all that it finally worked, until the computer rebooted. After some struggling I noticed there were two printers installed with the same name and same configuration settings, I picked the other printer and set it as default and finally things have worked since then.

Remarkably my Linux Mint PC detected the printer and configured fully functioning drivers automatically, I didn't have to use command line or enter any password. My iPhone and Android devices were equally painless to setup. I don't know if I should blame HP or Microsoft, but I find it unacceptable that this level of hardware incompatibility exists for something as basic as a printer, and it's unacceptable that windows 10 is only marginally better than Windows XP when it comes to managing printer drivers.
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
5,523
667
126

Put the printer on ethernet or buy a WiFi extender with ethernet port to get over with it.

I have to say most wifi chipset used on printers suck. Another problem with printers are they constantly go into sleep mode. Put printers on ethernet cable seems makes the situation better.

==

Oops, your printer is already on ethernet. Then put your wife's laptop on ethernet.
 
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KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
One more interesting data point. I was able to bring a Dell laptop running Win10 home from work for the night. I went to Printers and Devices, clicked on Add Printer and within 5 seconds it had found the printer and was ready to add it. This was on wifi, sitting at the same table as the HP laptop.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,069
253
126
One more interesting data point. I was able to bring a Dell laptop running Win10 home from work for the night. I went to Printers and Devices, clicked on Add Printer and within 5 seconds it had found the printer and was ready to add it. This was on wifi, sitting at the same table as the HP laptop.
So... as my thought in my privius post. It is the Laptop.

Why? I do not know IT for work places do variety of setting to protect their work systems.

Instead of "wild guessing" it might be a good idea to ask the Work's IT person.


:cool:
 

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
It's a small law firm, they have an offsite consultant for IT issues who, as my wife frequently complains, does as little as possible. As far as my wife knows it has nothing more on it than an off the shelf model but I've decided that it is an issue with this particular laptop. I have done as much as I can and I'm turning it over to the consultant to do any further investigation. Thanks everyone for the help and suggestions.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,069
253
126
Health Services firms are under HIPAA.

HIPAA is a set of Health Federal laws that also applies to Computer/Networks to insure the confidentiality of the Clients in the Health industry

This law applies also to Law firms that deal with such issues.

It is Not a Hardware matter; it is IT instructions to the setting of the computers and the networks in these offices.

In many cases it is generated by Group Policy Example - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/archive/blogs/canitpro/step-by-step-setting-up-printers-via-group-policy


:cool:
 

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
Hi Jack, why did you feel the need to instruct me in HIPAA, law firms and computer networks? I never mentioned health services or HIPAA and I never mentioned what kind of law my wife's small three lawyer firm does. How did you conclude that this is the solution to my problem with no evidence or information to lead you in that direction?

It turns out that I've worked for a very large medical device manufacturer for 25 years and have had mandatory annual training in HIPAA ever since the law was passed. That means that the work laptop I brought home to test is from that same company that very carefully abides by HIPAA, including all network and other IT restrictions that may apply. As I said, that laptop found the new printer in less than 5 seconds, so your HIPAA theory doesn't seem to be the answer.
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
5,523
667
126
Think Jack was just making a wild guess. It looks like your wife's work laptop was a domain computer and locked down by domain policy. Many businesses use domain policies to control/lockdown their computers/laptops, not restricted to just HIPAA.

So yeah, the printer driver could be locked and can only be installed by their domain admin/group policy.

Your work laptop probably was also in a domain, but the printer driver installation function probably was not locked by group policy. It all depends on how domain admin configured it.
 
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JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,069
253
126
@ KLC - I am on this Forum around 25 Years.

It goes throuhg periods. At the begining it was really about Technology and solutions.

Now it is mainly about Guessing. I.e., the problem many time is Not to find a solution to a technical problem but to Guess what the problem is.

You did not mention anything about HIPPA, so there is No reason to get "Upset" if I mentioned it.

Besides, My policy as of day one, is not just to answer to the OP but rather make it more wide that other that are too shy to post but do read the Forums can benefit from it too.


:cool:
 

KLC

Senior member
Jun 30, 2007
258
2
81
Not upset, more like confused, it seemed to come out of nowhere. It's all good. Thanks for trying to help. The next step is her on call IT guy.
 

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