Shared printer support

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What are shared printers?

Printer sharing is the process of sharing printers installed on one computer with other computers on the same network.

In enterprise environments, you share printers when you set up your IT infrastructure to allow multiple computers in your network to use printers installed on other computers in your network. Windows facilitates printer sharing by handling communication between computers and devices on your network and your printers.

Printer sharing involves at least two computers:

  • A server: the computer where you install your printer.

  • A client: a computer that accesses your printer through the host.

When you share a printer, your client installs the printer driver from your server. The print queue stays on the server.

Shared printing can make it easier to share group access to printers you install on hosts when your users work on clients.

Shared printers in Loftware NiceLabel

Depending on your environment, consider using direct printing on network printers instead of printer sharing to avoid potential conflicts and additional setup.

Shared printing may require additional setup when you use Loftware NiceLabel. Your user access rights for NiceLabel Proxy Service must be correct on all your clients for all your local users, which may conflict with some group policies you apply in your environment outside of NiceLabel. Many group policies don’t fully consider NiceLabel Proxy Service access requirements for user rights on client computers.

Note

We recommend you use local IP printers instead of printer sharing so you can check access rights, make updates, and centrally manage your printers in Control Center.

Shared printer support in NiceLabel applications

Designer and Print:

  • ✅ You can design and print using shared printers on any computer.

Control Center:

  • ✅ You can import shared printers to Control Center from any connected computer.

Control Center printer management:

  • ✅ You can install printers on servers but can't mark them as shared.

  • ❌ You can’t install shared printers from Control Center on clients.

  • ❌ You can’t see shared printers installed by other users on the same server or client computers.

Note

These limitations occur because NiceLabel Proxy Service (which allows connected printers on each computer to communicate with Control Center) must run under the same user account that has access to your shared printers.

If you use GPO policies, try installing shared printers under different Windows user accounts.

Upgrade and downgrade shared printer drivers

NiceLabel printer drivers require additional setup to upgrade shared printer drivers. For more information, read Installing printer drivers on Windows server and client machines.

Note

You can upgrade your drivers for direct IP printers in Control Center. With shared printers, you can upgrade printer drivers on servers in Control Center, but you must manually update clients.

Shared printer Licensing

NiceLabel 10 counts shared printers based on:

  • Server names (where you share your printer from)

  • Shared printer names

    • Computer aliases use additional license seats

Example 4. 

Installing a shared printer from \\myServer\mySharedPrinter on multiple computers uses one printer license seat.

  • Printing directly from the server uses an additional license seat.

  • Computer aliases like \\myServer.myDomain\mySharedPrinter use additional license seats.


For more information, read Counting licensed printers.