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Printer sharing in OS X Lion - a fix for Windows PCs

Posted by Robert Lee on 7 October 2011

Printer sharing in OS X Lion - a fix for Windows PCs

After upgrading to Mac OS X Lion, I found that printers connected directly to the Mac could not be accessed from Windows 7 over the network.  The networked printers on Windows 7 were originally setup previously when the Mac was running OS X Snow Leopard - they could still be seen, but any print jobs sent through would not print, and just sat in the print queue with no visible status.

Searching Google revealed that OS X Lion doesn't support printer sharing to Windows, however, Apple has a free program called Bonjour Print Services for Windows which fixes this problem.  Here's how to do it:

  1. Go to and download Bonjour Print Services for Windows.
  2. Run the installer on the Windows PC, and it will add a shortcut to the desktop.
  3. Ensure that printer sharing is enabled on the Mac (System preferences > Sharing).
  4. Run the new Bonjour shortcut on the Windows desktop to start the "Add network printer" wizard.
  5. The wizard should display a list of all available network printers. Select the desired printer and proceed.
  6. If the printer driver is not found automatically, either select it from the list or browse to it if you have the file.
  7. After completing the wizard you should be able to successfully print from the Windows PC to the network printer on the Mac.


6 comments received

Posted by Paul on 18 August 2012 at 10:19pm:

@efrain: run the Bonjour printer app DIRECTLY from the Programs folder with Admin authority. Find the Bonjour app in /Program Files/Bonjour Print Services, right-click and select run as Administrator. That did it for me.

Posted by efrain gonzalez on 29 July 2012 at 3:15am:

I followed all the steps outlined in your instructions and all goes well until I'm asked to click on the finish button after selecting my printer's profile. My printer doesn't load but instead I get a windows error 1796 "You do not have sufficient access to your computer to connect to the selected printer." I have set the printer and file sharing panes to allow other uses to print and share files via my network. I'm running OS 10.7 on a mac mini connect to an HP F4180 printer and I'm trying to print from a windows 7 pc via wireless network.

Posted by Terence on 11 April 2012 at 9:01pm:

God Bless you! This finally ended my 2 hour effort.

Posted by Terence on 11 April 2012 at 9:00pm:

God Bless you! This finally ended my 2 hour effort.

Posted by Simon on 23 March 2012 at 4:36pm:

Thank you - after hours of trawling the internet, a simple solution that works!

Posted by Alex Deva on 4 February 2012 at 10:49am:

Thanks for the solution!

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