I. If the printer has a serial port that does not require Appletalk/Localtalk:
- Keyspan has a USB-to-Serial Port adapter.
II. If the printer also has a parallel port:
- Keyspan has a USB adapter for this, too.
III. If the printer is a Localtalk printer, i.e. a printer with a serial port that requires Appletalk to be on and set to the port the printer is attached to:
- 1) an internal Localtalk port from Griffin Technologies
- 2) a hardware Ethernet-to-Localtalk adapter
- 3) a second Mac with Ethernet and a serial port
The following deals with these solutions.
1) an internal Localtalk port from Griffin Technologies
Griffin Technologies has a serial port adapter that fits in the internal modem slot of the following Macs running OS9:
- B&W G3 PowerMac
- G4 PowerMac
They also have an internal card for RevA and RevB iMacs running OS9.
2) a hardware Ethernet-to-Localtalk adapter
This lets you connect your Localtalk printer to your Mac's Ethernet connector.
The AsantéTalk is one example.
The Farallon iPrint Adapter LT is another.
3) a second Mac with Ethernet and a serial port
If you have access to an old Mac that has Ethernet and serial ports, you can use it as an Ethernet-to-Localtalk bridge:
- Install Apple's "Localtalk Bridge" software in the old Mac.
- Connect the old Mac by Ethernet to your newer Mac, or to an Ethernet network.*
- Connect the printer to the old Mac's serial port
- Set Appletalk to "Ethernet" in both Macs.
- Use the Chooser in OS9 or Print Center in OSX to select the printer.
*Connecting one Mac directly to another requires an Ethernet crossover cable, although it has been said that the G4 Powerbooks and 1000Gb G4 or newer can use a regular Ethernet cable for this use just as well. Depending on the model, your old Mac may need an AAUI-to-10baseT tranceiver, which can be bought pretty cheaply on eBay.
For more info, visit http://www.atpm.com/network/setup/localtalk_ethernet.htm and search the DealMac forum, where this subject has been covered in detail.