Printers normally have to be AirPlay-enabled in order for you to print from an iOS device. If you are like us, you still have the same printer you’ve been using since long before AirPlay was even a thought at Apple.
The good news is you don’t need to have an AirPlay-ready printer. The only bad news is that you have to have your computer on in order to make it work.
Mac (Lion Tested)
(Scroll down for Windows how to)
You don’t need to do anything to your iOS device, either.
1) Download AirPrint Activator (here) The Lion compatible version is still in beta, but we tried it out and it worked like a charm.
2) Launch AirPrint Activator, and turn it On:
*Please note that our image lists the printer. This is only because we tested the app before writing this. Yours will not yet list a printer*
3) Enter your Admin password.
4) You will get a prompt asking you to add/remove printer. (In previous versions, you will have to remove, then re-add the printer. In the current running beta, you do not have to do this). Either way, go to System Preferences>Print and Scan.
If you are running an older version for AirPrint Activator, remove (the minus sign) the printer. Re-Add it (the plus sign) and select the printer. The current beta does not require you to do this.
Then check off “Share this printer on the network”:
Now you’re done. You can print from your iOS device. Just note that your computer must be on in order to do this as it’s simply sharing the printer with your iOS device.
Windows (Not Tested)
Word of caution: We don’t have a Windows system, so we haven’t tested this method. Anything you download, do so at your own risk. That said, if you experience anything (good or bad) please let us know in the comments. It would be very appreciated, and could help us make this better.
1) You must have iOS 4.2 or higher as well as iTunes 10.1 or higher. You must also have AirPrint Installer (here again, we haven’t tested this one out. Use it at your own risk)
2) You must have your printer set up as a shared printer on your local computer. In short, the wireless printer must print from the computer you will be installing the software on.
3) Launch AirPrint Installer and click “Install AirPrint Service.” If it already happens to be greyed out, simply move on to the next step.
4) Set “Setup Service” to Auto.
5) Set “AirPrint Auth” to your Windows User Account. This is your Windows username.
6) Setup your printer for sharing. This is done by going to the Control Panel. Then go to Hardware and Sound>Devices and Printers.
7) Right-click the printer you are using and go to “Printer Properties.”
8) Look under the “Sharing” tab and check off the box that reads, “Share this printer.” If you have a firewall, then you must Allow AirPrint.
9) Now try to print with your device. You will be asked for the username and password. Enter those, and now you can print.