Wireless Lan while using Ethernet Printer

I'm trying to make sure that this can be done, and here is my situation. In my graphics shop I have just built a new computer system using Windows 7 64bit OS. I am using a USB wireless internet device in the computer that connects to cable internet through a wireless router. The problem I have is that I need to connect a large format printer to this computer which only connects with a LAN cable. I remember the older computer using Windows XP 32bit I had to bridge connections or some such to get it to utilize the LAN port for the printer while also allowing access to internet through wireless USB device.

Does Windows 7 work the same way where I will have to setup a separate connection and then bridge them or is this going to take some more tweaking to get to work properly? The printer itself has it's own IP address which I can get to in the printer and change if needed, but I just need to know if I can be able to use the printer while allowing the computer to access internet and the steps that I will need to go through to enable both.

I cannot connect both the printer and computer directly to router as it would be too difficult to situate this way. I need to be able to use both connections and I've heard it can be difficult to setup properly. Any help would be appreciated.


Microsoft MVP
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
With an Ethernet interface the printer is made to be used by plugging into an Ethernet port on the router. This is the easiest and best way for you to access the printer and should not present any problems. Both pc and printer will have full simultaneous access to all LAN resources (including each other).


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Do you have both a WiFi and Ethernet adapter on the computer, and if so are you wanting to connect the Ethernet directly to the printer?

Does the printer use any special type of Ethernet Connection, like one of the special HP jet whatever adapters?

If you wanted to run it wirelessly, you could us a Wireless Access Point, which will act just like having a wired connection.

The computer that I have just built has a motherboard with a 10/100/1000Mbps connection for Ethernet and as I had said before, I am using a USB wireless device to connect the computers through the router for sharing purposes and for internet.

I was hoping that I would be able to hook the printer directly up to the computer using the Ethernet cable just as I have been using it as the printer and cutter that I use are located near this computer and the cables are not in the way. However, to run a cable from the printer to the router would mean running a cable all the way across the shop which I do not want to do. And I cannot move the router next to the printer or I would have to run a cable from the cable modem to the router all the way across the shop.

So I am looking at hooking the printer directly up to the computer since the printer is really only used from that one computer. The programs needed to be able to print to this printer is only on one computer and most likely will never be on other computers. Other computers will only have the design software and not the print and rip. This will all be done from that one computer.

So to have the setup that I want and am able to do without having cords running across the shop, I need to be able to use the Ethernet cable from the printer to the computer while also using the USB device to connect to the router for sharing and internet, and need these connections so I can access both of them at the same time.

The printer is set up to run on IP address at the moment, but like I said, this can be changed if I need to. Is it possible to run both of these connections at the same time in Windows 7 as I did in Windows XP? If so, how might I go about enabling both connections to use at same time? I'm still quite new with Windows 7 and with all the changes from XP, it has me a little baffled on certain things.

If using a wireless access point is my only option here, I will have to look into that, but I am hoping to have this computer up and running as soon as possible, and was hoping I didn't have to purchase more equipment just to run both connections.
I[FONT=helvetica, arial, sans-serif] [/FONT]

Well, it seems it wasn't as difficult as I believed. I had read up on how to do this and from everything I had read, it seemed that it was going to be a real PITA to accomplish, but I have just hooked up everything and I am posting this from the new computer while my printer is going.

Here is what I have done in case anyone might find it helpful.

Of course as I had stated before, I am using a USB wireless adapter for network sharing and internet and the only option I had of hooking our large format printer to this desktop was through an Ethernet cable.

I already had the wireless all set up and was sharing the network and files on this computer with the others. I simply connected the printer which has its own IP address of When connecting this printer, my network sharing page showed an unidentified network. I went into the properties of this network and then to the properties of Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4). Before I had to have this set to the same IP address of the printer, but now it seems to be working even better because when we first hooked this printer up years ago, the IP address was supposed to be 1 number different. So I input the IP address in the TCP/IPv4 as with subnet of which it did automatically, and voila, I was able to use our printer just as we were able to before while I am on here surfing the web with the wireless internet.

It was actually quite a bit more simple than I had thought it would be and I didn't have to bridge any connections or change anything than the normal settings that I had to before. I appreciate everyone for their thoughts and help, and I hope this may help someone else later on that is trying to connect a printer in this way while using wireless capabilities for their internet.


Microsoft MVP
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
Yes, that describes in detail the point I made to start with - almost plug and play if both printer and router are running DHCP. Congratulations on sorting it and thanks for the feedback.

This website is not affiliated, owned, or endorsed by Microsoft Corporation. It is a member of the Microsoft Partner Program.