We have a VP who wants to print from his iPad. We have a few printers shared off our DC running Windows Server 2008 r2. All of the iPad apps that I've found have not worked very well. Has anyone had any success with getting iOS devices to print on a Windows network?
There's a guide here for that particular version of Windows server, although I suspect it applies to others as well.
The conceptual version is that you need two components - a program to convert from the iPad's AirPrint protocol to something the networked printers understand, and then a service to advertise the availability of the printer via Bonjour (aka zero-conf networking).
The reason you can't just hook up to standard printing services is that the iPad doesn't have any printer drivers, it offloads that responsibility to the printer, so if it's not an AirPrint-native printer, an intermediary has to do some of the extra work.
For an office environment it's hard to beat an inexpensive piece of hardware to serve up a dozen or more networked printers to iOS.
Lantronix makes the current best of breed model - xPrintServer. The home model is new, but the "network edition" has been a stalwart for many sites I've helped.
Our business has 300+ users using iPads and apps such as PrintnShare Pro. http://mobile.eurosmartz.com/products/printnsharepro.html
The beauty of this app is that they can print over 3G or Proxy as well as over wifi ; so great for the mobility element and can swap between users without compromising any security. Our Sales troops even print from their trunk as well as direct to our network printers in Logistics to fulfill orders. Very tidy solution over Windows XP and 2003 at least.
* Note I am no way affiliated with the company or get any kickbacks or anything else like the reply says!! I just like business tools for our staff that work like PrintnShare Pro and Docs 2 Go and DropBox.
Ignore the offical advice from Apple, they just want you to splash yet more of your cash on a licensed AirPrint printer. Here's the good news. Even on iOS5 (and iOS6), most printers can be AirPrint enabled via Windows without buying a new printer. Here are two ways to get what you want.
Free solution (requires tinkering)
If you don't mind doing a bit of configuration legwork, get JasonHD's fantastic AirPrint Installer from the MacRumors forum: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1293865
AirPrint Installer is fully iOS5 and iOS6 compatible. The first post in the thread contains a link to download the software; the rest of the thread has tips for troubleshooting if you can't get it to work.
Paid solution (just works)
On the other hand, if you're a technophobe and don't mind a small outlay... get FingerPrint: http://www.collobos.com/
Costs $19.99 and has a free trial so you can confirm it works with your printer.
Either way, you should be AirPrinting without a new a printer in no time...