Airport Express -- maximizing its potential with peripherals

in Genius Bar edited January 2014
Hi. I recently bought an all-in-one printer/scanner/fax/etc. (an HP 3380) and an Airport Express with the intent to have essentially a wireless AIO machine, with all scanning function intact. Apparently, I was a bit hasty in this assumption and through Apple's setup, am limited to printing only, and, from what I can tell, only computer-to-printer communication.

I have thought about biting the bullet and simply purchasing a long USB cable. This is a simple solution, albeit an obtrusive one. But I feel a little ambitious and want to employ the capabilities of this Airport Express. At the same time, I would be satisfied with any wireless solution. Therefore, my questions are thus:

1. Is there a way, to anyone's knowledge, to enable the scanning ability of this setup? (To be specific, the HP setup software allows me to choose a peripheral attached via USB or TCP/IP, but neither allow me to see this machine.)

2. (The ambitious one) How involved is the process in either...

a) writing some sort of interface driver specific to this model of printer that would allow me to use it as desired?

b) writing a general USB<->TCP/IP bridge/driver/abstraction layer/??? specific to the Airport Express, but transparent to the attached USB device, whether it be a scanner, CD burner, etc.? (Of course, this would be installed on the computer's end.)

I am compentent in writing pure C/C++ but lack in-depth knowledge of how to work with the operating system. I believe what I am trying to do is possible, though realize that it may be impossible, and perhaps I am underestimating just how involved a project like this is. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I'm sorry if any of this is unclear and stand by to clarify anything if necessary. Thanks again.


  • Reply 1 of 2
    kishankishan Posts: 732member
    HP has a wireless print server device available I think. If I am not mistaken, it will work over a wifi connection. Whether or not this allows full use of the all in one features of your device I am not sure, but this might be a place to start.

    edit: here's the page with all of hp's wireless print servers. Since they are all 802.11.b/g, they should work with the Airport Express. The only caveat is that I don't know how setup of these things is supposed to work (maybe you could read the online manuals to see about this). Also I don't know if they provide for full functionality of your multifunction device.
  • Reply 2 of 2
    denmarudenmaru Posts: 208member
    Same problem with a HP PSC 1110 here - works like a charm as a printer. but scanning etc. is beyond it, as long as it´s attached to the AE.

    Since I have a iBook, my solution is simple: go there, plug it into my iBook, scan, finished :3

    As fot the post above me, sorry, but that won´t help. These are made for printers, and they are basically the same es the AE.
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