10 Replies Latest reply: Apr 3, 2013 12:20 AM by kitschagogo
Phil_1984 Level 1 (0 points)

Not sure if this issue has been posted before, if so then please forgive me. I recently purchased my first Mac, a Macbook pro running on Mac OS X 10.6.6.

I have a network printer, a Canon MX330, at home that is connected to the family desktop computer, a PC on Windows XP.

When I connect my printer to the USB on my Macbook, it works instantly and I can print a test page. I can also go on my Desktop PC and print on that printer through the network.

The problem arises when I connect my printer to my desktop PC. The Macbook is unable to connect to the printer. However, I can browse my Desktop's shared folders from my Macbook. The printer also works locally on the Desktop as well as from the other PC's that are on the network, but not on the Macbook.

If anyone can please help, that would be really appreciated. Right now I have no choice but to copy my files to the public shared folder, then go upstairs to the Desktop, open them, and print.



Macbook pro, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • PAHU Level 6 (15,920 points)
    Hello Phil and welcome to Apple Discussions.

    Because you have the printer connected via USB to Windows you cannot use the Canon driver on the Mac. For this type of connection you need to use an alternate driver like Gutenprint or PrintFab. Gutenprint is preferred because it is free and comes with OS X. However the MX series is not yet listed as a supported model, even with the latest version of Gutenprint. So if you wanted to stick with Gutenprint then you would need to find a compatible model to the MX330. Some previous posters have mentioned that the MP150 and MP160 Gutenprint drivers have worked with their Canon.

    If you don't manage to get the Gutenprint driver printing correctly you could look at using [PrintFab|http://www.printfab.net] which does cost €49 but does have a 30 day trial so at least you could try it out. And it does list the MX330 as a supported printer.

  • Phil_1984 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hello Pahu,

    First of all, thank you for your assistance.

    I downloaded printfab and followed the instructions in the manual. It says that network printers must be installed through the OS X 10.6 printer set-up.

    The steps described are
    -> system preferences
    -> print and fax
    -> click on "+"
    -> for printers connected to Windows computers, click "windows"
    -> choose a workgroup and computer.

    This is where I am blocked. When I click on "windows", there is nothing to choose. There is a window with 3 columns and they are all empty.

    Any ideas?


  • PAHU Level 6 (15,920 points)
    Hi Phil,

    What they have described is the correct procedure for adding a Windows shared printer to the Mac. Given that you can connect to the shared folder on the PC then this process should work but can take some time.

    The first thing to ensure is that the printer on the XP PC is shared. In Printers & Faxes on XP, right-click the printer icon and select Sharing. Select 'Share this printer' and set the Share Name to a single name (spaces can impact things). OK this to close the driver properties window.

    With regards to the three columns that appear, the first column is for the workgroup name. If you are using XP Professional then the name will be Workgroup. The Home version will show MSHome. This workgroup name can take a while to appear (the Mac needs to determine who is the master browser on the network) but you can help the Mac by opening System Preferences > Network and for the connection type you are using (Airport or Ethernet) select it and then select the Advanced button. With this new view you will see the WINS tab. Select this and you will see the Mac's workgroup name and the workgroup it belongs to, which will most likely be blank. Click the drop menu and the workgroup name will show. Select this name and OK the change.

    Now try adding the printer again, selecting the Windows icon. The workgroup name of XP PC should show in the first column. If it does, select it and then second column will show the XP computer name. Select this and you should get prompted to enter the admin user details for XP. After entering the correct information the shared printer name will appear. Select this and then you can progress to selecting the PrintFab MX330 driver.
  • Clemenzah Level 1 (0 points)
    I'm having the exact same problem as the person above..
    I have tried everything.. for me, the spaces that I need to fill in at the windows tab for adding a printer are blank too. And when I go to network and advanced and then WINS and I click the dropdown menu on Workgroup but nothing comes up.. anyone with some intel for me? Im getting desperate
  • Phil_1984 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi Paju,

    I have the same problem described by Clemenza. The three columns are empty and the drop menu in the WINS tab is also blank.

    I don't know if this information can help, but in finder when I click on Go --> Connect to server --> and then type in "smb://phildesktop.local" I am able to mount my PC's shared folder. However even after doing that, on the MacBook the three columns are still empty and also, the drop menu in the WINS tab is blank.

    Once again, thank you so much for your help.

    Best regards,

  • Phil_1984 Level 1 (0 points)

    Sorry to bring back my own question to the forefront, but I would like to know if anyone can help me resolve this issue?


  • PAHU Level 6 (15,920 points)
    Hello Phil. Apologies for missing your previous replies.

    With this latest information I would suggest another approach. There is a manual method for adding the networked Windows printer and since you can connect to the shared folder using the Connect to Server method when this option may help.

    If you open Print & Fax and click + to add. With the Add Printer pane showing move the mouse into the toolbar, next to the Windows icon, and Control-click. Select Customize Toolbar from the menu and then drag the Advanced icon to the toolbar (between the Windows icon and the Search window). With the Advanced icon now in the toolbar, click it and then select Windows in the top drop menu. Leave the Device menu as is and for the URL box, after smb:// enter the computer name, a slash, and then the printers shared name. This would then look something like:


    Then in the Print Using menu you can select one of the Gutenprint drivers, as the Canon drivers do not work when the printer is shared by Windows. Now your MX330 is not listed as a supported model with the Gutenprint drivers so you could try the MP160 - some forum posts have reported that this driver works with other models.

    If you cannot find a suitable Gutenprint driver for the MX330 then you could look at using [Printfab|http://www.printfab.net]. There is a cost involved with this driver suite but your MX330 is listed as a supported model.
  • Phil_1984 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hello Pahu!

    Thank you so much for your help. Your solution has worked. I used the printfab driver and was able to connect by manually typing in the printer's network location in the advanced menu.

    I was wondering if you have any idea why I have to manually connect to my PC's shared folders and printers, rather than have them show up in the lists like they are supposed to?

    Thanks again,

  • PAHU Level 6 (15,920 points)
    Hello Phil. Good to read that you got it working.

    As to the reason why you have to manually connect, there can be a number of reasons. The most common is timing. For a workgroup, the computer that is turned on first typically becomes the master browser. This computer is responsible for NetBIOS name to IP address translation on the local network and broadcasting this information to the other computers withing the workgroup. This information broadcast can take anywhere from 15 minutes to half an hour, although in many cases it is much shorter than this. Once this information is passed onto all computers then they start to 'see' each other via Network Neighbour in PC's and in the Finder > Shared on the Mac.

    I would suggest that now that you have created a manual connection, the PC will probably appear in Finder and in the Windows Add Printer view. If it is still not appearing, then there could be other network reasons, such as IP addressing information configured in the Mac or setup/restrictions by your router/hub.
  • kitschagogo Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks - after weeks of trying other 'solutions' this one worked first time!


    To add: Enter your username and password for the WINDOWS pc once prompted to connect.