Installing Epson wireless printer using WPS

Last week we were called to a customer’s home who had been trying to install their new Epson wireless printer for two hours. They were getting an error and realised it was time to give up and call Comp-U-Train.

Upon arriving on-site, the customer told me that they had read the installation instructions which said to press the “Wi-Fi” on the printer for 3 seconds but kept getting a failed installation error message.

What is not made clear in the Epson instructions, is that pressing the Wi-Fi button on the printer, sets it up to join a wireless router using WPS. WPS or (Wi-Fi Protected Setup) is an automatic method of joining a piece of equipment to a router without user intervention. The router and equipment do a handshaking and network key negotiation automatically. This installation method will involve setting up the printer for WPS installation and then pressing the WPS button on the router.

The problem for our customer, is that their Wi-Fi router does not have WPS capability! Therefore, the Wi-Fi button should NOT be pressed during the installation. Simply turn on the printer and run the printer’s computer installation programme.

During the installation, you are sometimes offered the chance for the printer software to be upgraded during the installation phase. Choose “yes” to this so that you know your computer will have the latest printer drivers.

Failing this WPS method of Wi-Fi installation, the printer also offers a method to connect the printer to the router, by temporarily plugging the printer into a laptop using a USB cable. The important thing with using this option is NOT to plug in the printer’s USB cable until you are told to so!

This USB Wi-FI set up method is not to be confused when the printer will be connected to a computer by USB cable. For this, you must choose the USB connection installation configuration.

To install the printer for the customer,  I turned off the printer and restarted it. I then inserted the printer software into the customer’s laptop and chose the Wi-Fi connection and finally the easy USB option. The printer was then configured for Wi-Fi operation and I was able to print a test page!