How do I print to my office from home?

October 12, 2014 at 14:15:43
Specs: Windows 7
I am an Executive Director for a small business and I am about to go on maternity leave but I still want to work (and print) from home. Is there any way possible to do this? I have a Xerox WorkCentre 7830 that is wirelessly connected to the network. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance!

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October 12, 2014 at 17:56:30
Remote desktop would allow this... Part of windows XP-Pro and win-7 onwards.

There are other freebie utilities too, but not all allow the print option.

How is your office network configured; is it a simple peer to peer system, or do you have a small office domain (which means you have a server handling/controlling access to all computers etc.)?

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October 12, 2014 at 19:24:54
I believe that it is just peer to peer. The only thing that links the computers is the router/network. I have actually been having a lot of troubles connecting to the remote desktop. Would having the same ip address on my laptop that I take home as the desktop that I leave on at the office be the problem?

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October 13, 2014 at 05:28:51
The ip address of your (home) computer will actually be the ip address assigned by your isp to your service. It is invariably/usually a dynamic address - which means it can and may change at any time; for reasons various. The address you may see when connected within your home lan is just that - a local/home ip address; and just about everyone will find that others will appear to have the same address on their own home computer - or similar variants of it. You router translates your local home-lan ip address into what actually is presented on the www... (aka NAT).

These links - of many out there (Skully) - may help you set it up correctly. The first two are from M$-land.

Some will advocate using VNC approach; some a VPN. Some will advocate using some of the free (and some not so?) utilities that in effect automate the whole process for you. Logmein is one that M$ mentions; I have tested it but no more than that in real terms. TeamViewer is another; often used by hardware/software tech support departments when assisting clients over the internet. QNAPS use it to great effect; as I know from personal experience having had them remote into my system to rebuild a QNAPS NAS Linux OS which had gone seriously awry.

VNC is third party software; it works... But some will advise it can lead to pests transferring more easily from one computer. Having had this experience where I used to work (now effectively retired...) I know this to be so. Our IT dept finally disallowed its use except in one or two special situations; as a pest on one user's computer rattled its way around a whole network segment and almost shut it down at one stage... Just about every computer (desktop/laptop) on the segment was hit... All thanks to a pest arriving in an email, and then using VNC to get around... Which having said - with suitable care and protections - strict ant-virus policy etc. it might to be OK nonetheless?

Incidentally, CurtR and Wanderer are both very current in major networking issues; not the least remote access and more involved adventures... Likely if you still have problems after going through the above links... they may (will?) come across and advise more fully. My experience is this area is necessarily limited; but nonetheless based on experience. Their''s is much greater - and also more current?

message edited by trvlr

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October 13, 2014 at 07:13:42
The problem with all of these is that I have already enabled the remote desktop on the office computer. I was only able to connect to it once and then when I tried it again a few weeks later it wouldn't work. I made sure that it was allowed through the firewall (at least on the office end) and it still won't work. I was wondering if installing VoIP would have caused a problem but that doesn't make sense. Every time I try and connect to the office computer I always get the same error message.

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October 13, 2014 at 07:46:50
Are you addressing the possible issue of your home ip address changing from when you set up the actual cct. to/for Remote Access? Remote Access does presume a fixed/stable ip address for the client wishing to access the remote computer etc...?

What is the error message you get when attempting to connect?

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October 15, 2014 at 08:11:35
Hello! I'm sorry that it has taken me so long to respond to you. I am not sure what you mean by my home ip changing. I know that the ip address for my laptop and the desktop at my office are the same when I am there. When I am home the ip address for my laptop is different from when I am at the office.
This is the error message I get when I try and connect from home:

"Remote Desktop can’t connect to the remote computer for one of these reasons:

1) Remote access to the server is not enabled
2) The remote computer is turned off
3) The remote computer is not available on the network

Make sure the remote computer is turned on and connected to the network, and that the remote access is enabled."

I believe I have addressed all of the possible issues except for number one. I am not so sure about that one but like I said before I was able to connect once before and the only thing different that I can tell is that I have VoIP now.

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October 15, 2014 at 08:13:11
Just one more thing actually. When I try and connect to the remote desktop from work I get the same error message as well.

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October 15, 2014 at 09:39:26
You have an internal (inside your home and similarly office) ip address; that/those is/are assigned automatically by your router (unless you manually set those addresses).

Your actual ip address from the www side of things, i.e. your actual ip address onto the internet, is actually quite different; and that is assigned by your isp. As previously stated, unless one pays for a static address you will have a dynamic address - and that can (and will) often change at any time... An "internal ip address" is translated by software within the router so as to appear as that dynamic address (supplied by your isp) to others viewing/accessing your computer(s) from across the internet.

The error messages would seem to imply that either the remote access option is not enabled on computers various (those you wish to use that way); or something is blocking access - possibly the firewall?

I'm not familiar with the ins/outs of VoIP - know what is is of course but have never actually used it or set it up. Possibly there is a setting there that is interfering with your remote access; can you temporarily disable it and see if remote access then works OK? If it is VoIP causing the problem then we have to discover exactly what it is that VoIP is doing in that regard...?

This discussion seems to orbit around a not unsimilar situation to yours...:

Note that although it is correctly pointed about that internal addresses are translated when going out on to the internet, there appears to be some suggestion that if host and client have the same ip address - then problems may arise... And to avoid that possibility one can simply re-assign ip addresses at one end so as not to have the same in use at both ends (host and client). To do this would mean you set say the home system to manual DHCP and use a range of address higher up the range you actually share...


Both home and office use (typically) 192.168.x.y where x is frequently either 0 or 1 - can be higher...; and y is anything from 1-254 (actually anything between 2 - 253 as .x.1 and.x.254 are reserved...).

So if you are happy to... perhaps assign (manually set) the DHCP to give higher value ip addresses for "all" your home kit... and leave office stuff on automatic DHCP assignments. Perhaps all home kit starting at x.50 and on from there? If your office was on say etc... and your home was on etc... then that possible conflict wouldn't arise and thus no need of going manual at one end of the chain?

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October 15, 2014 at 09:44:43
Just to clarify wicht addresses are what and where...

Can you post the results of:

ipconfig /all

for both the desktop and laptop - at work; and similarly the laptop when at home.

That command is run from a command prompt - which command brings up a dos style window and into which one enters the ipconfig /all command. (Apologies if you already are familiar with the use of ipconfig /all command...)

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