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Printer Sharing Logon RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello, resident genii --

    I'm loving Windows Home Server, since it's a lot easier to manage than previous versions of Windows Server 2003. I must commend the makers of this product, because all I had to do was plug in my printer and Plug & Play recognized it right away. Sharing was also a piece of cake, as I'm sure it would be to those of whom this would be their first server.

    I have a question about printer sharing, though, which may be on the client side or on the server side, depending on the approach you propose to correct it. I've created accounts on the server for all the users in my network and set the printer up to be shared, but I have a laptop running Windows XP Home in my network that two users frequently use, neither of whom will password-protect their Windows user accounts but both of whom want to be able to access the printer. Since the passwords are not synchronized between the client and the server, Windows decides not to print unless the Shared Folder on the desktop is double-clicked and the username and password are used to authenticate that account with the server; only then will the printer work.

    Optimally, I'd like it so that each Windows account would log onto the server automatically using their account name and password so that the printer automatically connects, but so far I haven't found out how to do that. If push comes to shove I may have to share the printer publicly by adding the Everyone group to the security permissions, but I don't want to have to do that, not only because it's outside the "black box" of the console, but also because it's a bit of a security hole if someone gains access to my network.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Thanks in advance for any and all help!

    Friday, March 23, 2007 7:26 AM

Answers

  • Unfortunately, in a home environment, with local instead of domain users, I think you're a bit stuck. In this environment, you really need to have users and passwords synchronized on the two machines in order for authentication to work seamlessly. I would tell the users that, in order to access the shared printer, they will have to type a user id and password at some point. They can type it when they log on, or they can type it when they want to print, but they will have to type it.

    If that just won't fly, you can try setting up logon scripts for the users, and map a drive to a share on the server explicitly in the script. You would put something like this:

    net use l: \\server\public password /User:stubbornuser

    in the script. That should work (it establishes credentials up front), but it's a pain and will pop up an error if the server isn't reachable for some reason (like the laptop is at the library instead of at home).
    Friday, March 23, 2007 11:26 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • You could try creating accounts on the server that have the same username as those on the client, but no password; these should sync just the same as accounts with passwords. Of course, anyone else can still use these accounts to print.

    Personally, I'd say: if you want to connect to the network, you use a password. (Conversely, if you don't use a password, you won't be connecting to the network.) But that's just me.
    Friday, March 23, 2007 7:45 AM
  • Unfortunately, in a home environment, with local instead of domain users, I think you're a bit stuck. In this environment, you really need to have users and passwords synchronized on the two machines in order for authentication to work seamlessly. I would tell the users that, in order to access the shared printer, they will have to type a user id and password at some point. They can type it when they log on, or they can type it when they want to print, but they will have to type it.

    If that just won't fly, you can try setting up logon scripts for the users, and map a drive to a share on the server explicitly in the script. You would put something like this:

    net use l: \\server\public password /User:stubbornuser

    in the script. That should work (it establishes credentials up front), but it's a pain and will pop up an error if the server isn't reachable for some reason (like the laptop is at the library instead of at home).
    Friday, March 23, 2007 11:26 PM
    Moderator