obsolete in 2016
2018 Fax is built in to Windows 8 & 10
are a couple of ways to send and receive a fax. Many printers today
are All In One that iclude Fax as an option. All you need is a phone
line plugged into the printer. Using you computer, you can fax in
one of two ways. In either case, you need a scanner to copy the paper
into your computer.
1. Use an on line fax service. Some offer a limited amount of free
faxing. if you only do it occasionally, this is the way to go. Many
offer a free fax number for receiving faxes if you do not want to
use you own phone number.
2. Using your own fax machine or All In One Printer. Connect your
phone line to the device and follow the instructions to set it up.
Positives: Easy to use. Negative: lots of wated paper from ads.
3: Windows fax works the same as fax machine in your house. It accesses
the local phone line and dials a number or answers the phone as requested.
Positives: No wasted paper. You choose what to print if anything.
Negatives: You must have a working modem installed. I actually had
to go and buy one! You must then connect your phone line to the computer.
If you are new to computing, you may not remember the old dial up
days. Today (2016) you can get a USB modem that just plugs in. No
need to open the case. These are available at places like Amazon &
Walmart for under $20.
You cannot be using the phone line for other purposes when you try
to fax as you will get a busy signal.
this having been said, the best way to set up Windows to fax is to
have a second line dedicated to faxing. You can use one line, but
it creates extra problems just as trying to use a fax machine on one
line at home if you have tried that. BTW, I refer here to using it
at home, but it works at work too if you have access to a dedicated
outside line. We have a small business that receives a lot of faxes.
We have dedicated line just for the fax and we get a lot of advertising
junk as well as a lot of Phishing (scanning for fax number to broadcast
be assured you cannot get a virus from receiving a fax.
lets cover how Windows fax works. After you have it set up as noted
below this is what happens. You can set the program to answer automatically
(best if you have a dedicated second line) or as noted below, you
can set it to answer manually (best for one line).
you set the options to send and receive, then when the phone rings,
one of two things happens. For auto answer, the computer answers the
phone and accepts the call. If you also DO NOT CHOOSE TO HAVE THE
FAX PRINTED, it is stored in the computer for you to decide if you
want to print it. This is where you save money printing all the junk
faxes. We get a lot of them.
you have selected manual answering, the phone rings in the computer
and asks if you want to answer it. Obviously the computer must be
on and you must be close enough to select "Answer".
why I like the dedicated second line. I leave my computer on all the
time. It receives faxes 24/7 with no response on my part. When I check
the machine in the morning, I review the faxes and delete the junk
and do not waste paper printing them as a fax machine will do. And
fax paper ain't cheap!
if you don't have the ability to have a second line, then you should
do this: If you know a fax is being sent, just ask them to call twice.
Call once to tell you a fax is coming and then let the computer answer
it the second time. Many of you have done this with a fax machine.
The one advantage of a real machine is many of them can distinguish
between a voice call & a fax call. Unfortunately windows does
not. Maybe some of the 3rd party programs can, but I don't know.
for sending faxes. Actually this a little easier with a dedicated
machine. You just put the paper in and dial the number, hit send and
walk away. Not quite so easy with Windows. There are 2 kinds of faxes.
One you create in the computer (usually in Word) and the other is
a paper you want to copy and send.
the paper you create in the computer is easier. You select "Print"
and on the printer selection drop list and select "Fax"
as the printer. You may also see another fax choice if you have a
multi-function printer installed. Use the one that says "Fax",
not HP fax or Brother Fax, etc.
this option will open the fax wizard. You then have to enter the required
information or select from the phone book if you are using Windows
programs (Outlook, WAB). After you complete the wizard, it will open
your phone line and listen for a dial tone. If it hears the tone,
it will dial the number and if successfully connected, send the fax
and hang up when done. If it does not complete successfully, it will
try again in a few minutes and keep repeating until it succeeds. (It
gives up after a while)
if you have a paper that you want to send, you must first get it in
the computer. To do this, you need a scanner. Many of us have multi-
function printers these days with built in scanners. Actually if you
have one with fax capability, set it to send but not receive. Be sure
you have a phone line plugged into the printer. If you have a scanner,
but without fax ability, then scan the document into Windows. Then
choose Print and in the print selection, choose Fax and proceed as
may also select to scan the document into word and fax from there.
Windows 7, 8 and 10 you have a program called Windows Fax and Scan.
I use it for scanning but not for fax anymore. If you want to use
it for faxing, Open the app (you may have to search for it). The click
on New Fax and follow the wizard to set it up.