How to print from a Chromebook

There are many advantages of using a lightweight laptop like a Chromebook. Sure, they are somewhat different from Windows 10 laptops and MacBooks given their web-first roots. However, they can easily handle simple tasks just like the competition — even printing.

Pairing a printer with your Chromebook is fairly simple, but the method is slightly different. Here’s how to set up wired and wireless printers to print from a Chromebook.

Further reading

Set up your printer with WiFi

This guide assumes that you already added the printer to your wireless network. If not, many modern printers include an embedded touch display that walks you through a setup wizard. If no display is present, grab the manual or download it from the manufacturer’s website.

If you have a printer that does not support wireless printing, skip to the next section. Otherwise, make sure the printer is on, functioning properly, and connected to the wireless network.

Step 1: Click the System Clock located in the bottom right corner, and verify that your Chromebook is connected to the same network as the printer.

Step 2: With the pop-up menu still active, click the Gear icon, as shown below. This opens the Settings window.

Chrome OS Settings Icon

Step 3: Click the down arrow next to Advanced to expand the menu.

Step 4: Click Printing on the expanded menu.

Step 5: Click the Printers option on the right.

Step 6: Chrome OS should detect and list your printer. Click the Save button — it’ll be automatically moved to the Your Saved Printers category and set as your default.

In this example, we added an Epson XP-7100 Series printer.

Chrome OS Add Printer

If your printer doesn’t automatically appear, click the blue Plus icon to the right of Add Printer. A pop-up window appears for you to enter a name, the printer’s IP address, the protocol (typically IPP), and the queue (typically ipp/print).

When finished, click Add.

Set up your printer with a USB cable

If your printer is older and doesn’t support WiFi connections, you can set up your printer using a USB cable. However, this method may not work on older printers, given you can’t install software or drivers on a Chromebook.

Step 1: Connect your printer’s USB cable to the appropriate port on the Chromebook. You may need a USB-A to USB-C adapter, depending on the Chromebook model. Also, verify that the printer is on and functioning normally.

Step 2: Once plugged in, click the System Clock located on the bottom right corner, followed by the Gear icon on the pop-up menu. This opens the Settings window.

Chrome OS Settings Icon

Step 3: Click the down arrow next to Advanced to expand the menu.

Step 4: Click Printing on the expended menu.

Step 5: Click the Printers option on the right.

Step 6: Chrome OS should detect and list your printer. Click the Save button — it’ll be automatically moved to the Your Saved Printers category and set as your default.

Chrome OS Add Printer

How to Print on a Chromebook

With your printer ready to go, here’s how you can print from a Chromebook.

Step 1: Load the page that you want to print and press the Ctrl + P keys simultaneously. Alternatively, when using Chrome, you can click the three-dot Ellipsis icon in the top right corner, and select Print on the drop-down menu.

Step 2: A pop-up window appears on your screen. Verify that your printer appears in the Destination field listed on the right. If not, expand the drop-down menu and select your printer. You can also select other saved printers by clicking See More on the drop-down menu.

Chrome OS Print Screen

Step 3: With the printer verified, check all other basic settings: Pages, copies, layout, and color. For additional settings, expand the More Settings option to check the paper size, margins, quality, scale, and more.

Step 4: With everything verified, click the blue Print button.

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