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How to print from a Chromebook

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How to print from a Chromebook

This article is for information only and doesn’t call for any action.

While Google’s Chromebooks are all about online services, sometimes you need a good old-fashioned printout to accompany your digital adventures.

Printing from a Chromebook has gotten a lot easier over the years, but it still isn’t always obvious how to get started or which paths to embrace. Follow this guide, and you’ll be churning out paper from your cloud-centric computer in no time.

Add a current wireless printer

Provided you have a reasonably recent printer that’s capable of connecting to the internet, you should be able to add it directly to your Chromebook without the need for supplementary services.

First, make sure the printer is on and connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your computer. The procedure for connecting a printer to Wi-Fi varies from one model to the next, but there’s generally a “Wi-Fi” or “internet” option somewhere on the printer’s display, either as an icon on the main screen or as an option in its settings menu. This should walk you through the process.

Got the printer online and ready? Here’s what to do next:

  • Click the clock in the lower-right corner of your Chromebook’s screen. Then click the gear-shaped icon to open its settings.
  • Type “print” into the search box at the top of the settings panel.
  • Select “Printers,” then click the blue “Add Printer” button.
  • Click on your printer’s name in the list that appears, and click the blue “Add” button to finish the pairing.

Add an older wireless printer

If your printer doesn’t appear in the list (which may happen if it’s an older device), you’ll need to click the “Add Manually” button that appears on the lower left corner of that window.

  • Give the printer any name you want.
  • Type its IP address into the “Address” box. (You can usually find the IP address somewhere in the printer’s display menu. Try looking in its settings for a section about network or wireless configuration.)
  • Leave the other two fields as they are, and click the blue “Add” button. Type in your printer’s manufacturer (e.g., “HP”) and model (e.g., “Officejet Pro 8600”), and select the appropriate options as they appear. Click the blue “Add” button when you’re done.

Chromebooks also support Google’s Cloud Print system, but this direct connection method is generally the simpler and more reliable route to take.

Connect a printer physically to your Chromebook

If you’re using a much older printer that isn’t internet-capable, or if it is internet-capable but you’re having trouble connecting it manually as described above, don’t fret. You can connect your printer physically to a Chromebook using a USB cable.

  • Plug the cable into your printer, and then plug the other end into your Chromebook. (You may need an adapter, depending on what kind of cable you have and what kind of ports your Chromebook provides.)
  • Open your Chromebook’s settings and type “print” into the search box.
  • Select “Printers,” and then click the blue “Add Printer” button.
  • Click on your printer’s name, and click the blue “Add” button to finish.

That’s it! Now just hit Ctrl-P from any browser tab or look for the “Print” command in any app, and prepare to print to your heart’s content.

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