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Contrary to popular opinion, all is not always well in the land of OS X. Just as James gets his MacBook Pro back, I’m struggling with something as simple as printer sharing on my home network. Last year, I purchased the AirPort Extreme Base Station solely […]

BonjourprinterwizardContrary to popular opinion, all is not always well in the land of OS X. Just as James gets his MacBook Pro back, I’m struggling with something as simple as printer sharing on my home network. Last year, I purchased the AirPort Extreme Base Station solely because it offered the ability to use a USB-connected printer on a home network. I’ve futzed with that for months using an HP PhotoSmart 7760 but it was wildly unreliable… and that’s being kind in the description. As a result, I had to USB connect the printer directly to my MacBook Pro and share it with Barb’s iMac and my Windows devices.Today, I found a steal of a deal on a color laser printer: the Samsung CLP-300 might not be the best laser printer by a long shot, but at $99 after a $150 rebate at Staples, I grabbed one this morning. The device supports Mac OS X Leopard and the first thing I did was connect it to my AirPort Extreme. OS X was able to install the printer (as type “Bonjour”) but once again it wasn’t working reliably. For every four or five print jobs, only one would go through and usually that would take about 10 minutes for something as simple as a textual page.Connecting directly to my MBP, installing as a USB printer, and then sharing worked much better, but again that all defeats the purpose of my AEBS purchase. So now I’m 0 for 2 with printers hanging from the AEBS. Ironically, using Bonjour for Windows, I was able to install the printer on my Samsung Q1 Ultra Premium and wouldn’t you know, it works just fine? Ugh… I’m generally happy with my other Apple products, but I have to say that I’m fairly disappointed in the AirPort Extreme. It works fine as a router, but I have three of those in a closet right now and they all worked fine too. Using anything in the AEBS USB port, including an external hard drive, has proven to be a poor performer.

  1. I picked up a new printer last week to hang off my Airport Extreme… My results are mixed (and worse than the printer it replaces). My MacBook Pro sometimes prints wireless, but this morning the device (printer) was busy and only rebooting everything restored it. My deskptop PC (Vista) so far as printed 100% via Bonjour, but Melissa’s laptop (Vista) hasn’t connected and printed even once. I’m having a bad computer week. Maybe I should find a pen and a pad of paper just to be sage.

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  2. Actually, I just remembered my prior printer was connected to the AEBS via Ethernet… Maybe it’s the USB connection that’s flakey. Before the last router update, using it as a NAS was unreliable – that’s better now. Honestly, If I had more time I’d ebay this thing and replace it with a $50 N-spec router.

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  3. You guys sure have lots of issues with your Macs. Or so it seems from the podcasts and your posts. I dumped Mac laptops because of quality issues. I also hated how hard it was for a end user to upgrade them. I think the regular MacBook is better but the Pro is absurd. It takes me less than 5 minutes to install a hard drive in my Thinkpad.
    As for Bonjour I never used it I assumed it was designed for a Mac and part of their Adware suite they push on iTunes users.

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  4. For a few years I was using a Caon S200x plugged into an Airport Express and shared to my Mac and various Pcs using Bonjour. It worked a treat and was very reliable.

    I recently replaced the printer with a HP and couldn’t for love or money get it working with the Airport so it ended up being plugged into the mac and then shared using Bonjour. The Bonjour part worked fine but it means that the Machas to stayed powered up..

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  5. GoodThings2Life Wednesday, May 28, 2008

    Mark Schneider,

    Well stated!

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