Apple-Talking icon

Lets add a printer or another device to the LocalTalk network

Once your small network is up and running, adding additional devices is easy. The AppleTalk connectors are the best way to go on these old Macs. I have seen EtherTalk adapters for the Mac Plus and up. Unfortunately those do not exist on the standard Mac 512K or the Mac 512Ke. You could do it if you added a third-party add on SCSI board.

You can network any Macintosh that has a Printer port (aka LocalTalk port). The Mac 512K & 512Ke are used as an example.

3 Macs or 2 Macs and 1 Printer

We will need:

• 3 Macs


• 2 Macs and 1 AppleTalk-ready printer

• 3 LocalTalk connectors with phone wire
(Note: Apple's brand name AppleTalk connectors are self-terminating. There were part of the AppleTalk Personal Network)

This will accomplish:

• Allow all Macs to share files using a peer-to-peer network software.

• Allow a Mac to become a dedicated file server.

• Allow all Macs to print to an AppleTalk-ready printer.


• If you want to share files:

• One of the Macs needs to be a Mac Plus or higher running System 7.0 or higher.

• One of the Macs needs to run an very old version of AppleShare file serving software.

How to do it:

1.) Take the LocalTalk connectors and plug them into each Mac's printer port.

* The Mac 512K and 512Ke take a DB-9 connector, all other Macs use a Mini-Din 8 connector. The Mac 128K cannot be networked.

2.) Connect the LocalTalk connectors with phone wire.

• Each connector will daisy-chain to the next connector.

• Terminate each end of the network. They will have a switch or a phone plug type of terminator.

(In the example above, the red line on the Mac 512K's LocalTalk connector and on the

Mac Plus' LocalTalk connector are the terminators.)

* Do not make a loop, this will cause interference.

3.) Load the networking software on each Mac.

4.) Load the printer software on each Mac. See your printer manual or contact the manufacturer for installing instructions.

*Make sure each Mac is using the same version of printer software.

* The LaserWriter and LaserWriter Plus takes a DB-9 connector, other LaserWriters take a Mini-Din 8 connector.

The Mac 512 is a gYounk design & programmed site.