HP wireless direct

What is HP wireless direct?

HP wireless direct is a new feature that allows your Wi-Fi capable devices (for example: smart phones, tablets, or computers) to make a network connection directly to your printer without using a or . You connect to your printer’s HP wireless direct signal the same way you connect your Wi-Fi capable device to a new wireless network or hotspot.

From a computer, smart phone or tablet, being connected to the HP wireless direct connection looks the same as being connected to a typical network to which the HP printer is already connected. A print application (for smart phones and tablets) or printer software (for a computer) must be installed in order to use the printer over the HP wireless direct connection.

All printer functions will be available, with the exception of photo uploads and memory card access, via a mapped drive. Some printers have implemented HP wireless direct with two modes: “Print only” and “Open”. If “Print Only” mode is selected, only the print function will be available. If “Open” mode is selected, all of the printer features will be available, with exception of photo uploads and memory card access, via a mapped drive.

Some important things to know about HP wireless direct:

  • The HP wireless direct connection supports up to five clients at the same time.
  • You can turn HP wireless direct on and off from the HP wireless direct menu on the printer display. HP wireless direct is turned off by default. You can also check the HP wireless direct name or password—if you chose to enable HP wireless direct with security—from the HP wireless direct menu. The HP wireless direct network name will have the format “HP-Print-**-<printer model>”. The “**” characters are a placeholder to represent two characters used to uniquely identify your printer, and <printer model> will be the model of your printer.
  • If you turn HP wireless direct on with security (available on some printers), an 8-digit 2 password will be automatically generated. In order to connect, the Wi-Fi-capable device must also support 2 encryption. This password can be accessed on the printer display at any time after you turn this feature on.
  • HP wireless direct is available even if the printer is also connected to a network or by a USB cable.
  • Important: You cannot access the Internet through the HP wireless direct connection.

Not all products support HP wireless direct. To determine if your product supports this feature, print a Network Configuration page from your printer’s control panel and look for a section called HP wireless direct. If this section is included, your printer supports this feature. For most printer models, you can print this page from the Wireless Settings menu or by pressing the Network Configuration button on your printer.

 How to connect to HP wireless direct

Perform the following steps to connect your mobile device or computer to your printer directly.

  1. Turn on HP wireless direct from the printer’s control panel. On most models, you will need to access the Wireless Settings menu by pressing the Wireless button or touching the Wireless icon on the printer’s control panel. Select Wireless Direct, and then select “On” or “On (with security)” or “On (no security)” depending on your printer model. HP recommends “On (with security)” where available.
  2. On your mobile device or computer, ensure the Wi-Fi radio is on and then connect to the HP wireless direct network in the same way you would for any other network. The HP wireless direct network name will have the format “HP-Print-**-<printer model>”. The “**” characters are a placeholder to represent two characters used to uniquely identify your printer and <printer model> will be the model of your printer you have.
  3. If you turned HP wireless direct on with security, supply the 2 password when prompted by your mobile device or computer.

 How to use the HP wireless direct connection

You have a Wi-Fi mobile device and want to print using the HP wireless direct connection.

  1. First turn on HP wireless direct from the printer’s control panel.
  2. From your mobile device, turn on its Wi-Fi radio, search for and connect to the HP wireless direct name. For mobile devices, you need to have a compatible print application installed. For Apple® iOS devices, Airprint™ is included with the operating system and is compatible.
    1. Note: When connecting an Apple iOS device (such as iPhone® or iPad®) to the HP wireless direct printer, you might notice the spinning connection status icon does not stop. This is expected behavior and indicates only that the HP wireless direct connection does not provide Internet access. You can ignore the spinning circle icon and assume that your Apple device is connected to the printer. Since HP wireless direct is only a connection between your mobile device and the printer, the mobile device cannot access the Internet through the printer. This is new behavior with iOS 5+. Previous versions of iOS will not display the spinning circle icon. For more details, refer to the HP product support page documentation for your product.

      You haven’t set up the printer, haven’t installed the printer software, and you want to use the printer only over the HP wireless direct connection (no wireless router or access point).

      1. First complete the printer hardware setup. If the printer display shows connections options such as “Software Assist”, “Manual”, “Setup wireless via printer”, “Connect later”, you should chose “Connect Later” since you will not be connecting the printer to a wireless network.
      2. Turn on HP wireless direct from the printer’s control panel.
      3. From your computer, turn on the Wi-Fi radio, search for and connect to the HP wireless direct name.
      4. Install the printer software for your computer. When the Connection Options software screen is shown, select “wireless”. Select the printer from the printer’s detected screen when it is shown, and then complete the software installation.

      You have already installed the printer over a network connection, have installed the printer software on your computer, and have been using the printer over the network. You want to also use the printer over HP wireless direct.

      1. Turn on HP wireless direct from the printer’s control panel.
      2. From your wireless computer, turn on the Wi-Fi radio, search for and connect to the HP wireless direct name. You can use the printer the same way you did over the network connection. No additional software installation is required. The printer can remain connected to your home network as well. However, your computer can only be connected to the printer OR your home network, not both at the same time.

      You have previously installed and use the printer with a USB cable or chose the “Connect Later” option from the software, and want to use the printer over the HP wireless direct connection.

      1. Turn on HP wireless direct from the printer’s control panel.
      2. From your wireless computer turn on the Wi-Fi radio, search for and connect to the HP wireless direct name.
      3. Configure the settings from the printer software.
        1. Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7:
          Start -> Programs -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
        2. Windows 8:
          • Launch the Printer Software from the Start screen (icon for the printer model name) or from the tile named for your printer.
          • Select (click or touch) Utilities on the top of the Printer Software screen
          • Select Printer Setup & Software
          • Select Convert a USB connected printer to Wireless
        3. Mac OS X:
          Open Finder and go to Applications -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
        4. You can also insert the printer software CD which will provide the Welcome Back screen or get the Full Function software from www.hp.com/go/customercare
        5. Click “Connect new printer”. 
Important: Do not select “Convert a USB connected printer to wireless”.
        6. In the Connection Options screen, select Wireless, and then click Next.
        7. Select the printer from the printer’s detected screen when it is shown, and then complete the software installation.

      After setting up the HP wireless direct connection, you will see two printer icons in the printer’s folder for the HP printer. The printer icon labeled “Network” is the printer driver installed for HP wireless direct. Select it when printing over the HP wireless direct connection. If you no longer want to print using a USB cable connection, you can delete the HP printer icon without the “Network” label.

      You have already installed the printer through the HP wireless direct connection, you have installed the printer software, and you want to use the printer over a wireless network with a wireless router.

      1. First, connect your computer to the wireless network you want to connect the printer to.
        Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7:
        Start -> Programs -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
        Windows 8:
        • Launch the Printer Software from the Start screen (icon for the printer model name) or from the tile named for your printer.
        • Select (click or touch) Utilities on the top of the Printer Software screen
        • Select Printer Setup & Software
        Mac OS X:
        Open Finder and go to Applications -> HP -> <your printer model> -> Printer Setup & Software.
      2. Select “Reconfigure wireless settings”. For some printers you will need to temporarily connect a USB cable between the printer and computer. For other printers with large displays, you will be directed to use the front panel Wireless Setup Wizard to connect the printer to your wireless network. Once the printer is connected to your network, you can use the printer, no additional software is needed.

Other topics to consider

Select from the following list to access related HP wireless direct content.

Wireless printing without a router

Printing from multiple computers