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can i use wireshark to know the data sent between a computer and a printer?

asked 2024-01-17 23:42:25 +0000

Joseaaa gravatar image

updated 2024-01-18 20:50:59 +0000

Guy Harris gravatar image

as the title says

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answered 2024-01-18 06:21:41 +0000

Guy Harris gravatar image

If the computer is communicating with the printer over a network, such as a local-area network (Ethernet, Wi-FI) or (less likely, but not impossible) over a wide-area network such as the Internet, then, if you run Wireshark on the computer, it should be able to capture the network traffic to the printer.

That traffic might be encrypted, in which case you would need to be able to decrypt the traffic in order to see the data being sent between the computer and the printer. Wireshark can decrypt some traffic, but would need additional information in order to decrypt it.

If the printer is locally attached over USB, then, if Wireshark can capture raw USB traffic (which it can on some operating systems, with varying levels of difficulty), it may be able to show you the traffic between the computer and the printer.

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While you can sniff USB traffic with an extension it has a number of drawbacks that make it clear you should not use this on most computers.

hugo.vanderkooij gravatar imagehugo.vanderkooij ( 2024-01-18 10:10:53 +0000 )edit

But if the usb is plugged from computer to printer, I need to have wireshark inside the computer right? I cant get info with another computer

Joseaaa gravatar imageJoseaaa ( 2024-01-18 17:13:59 +0000 )edit

While you can sniff USB traffic with an extension

An extension is required only oil Windows. and the Wireshark installer allows the USBPcap extcap to be installed.

On those UN*Xes that support USB traffic capture - Linux, macOS, FreeBSD - support is built into the OS. It may have to be configured on in Linux (a kernel extension might have to be loaded), and newer versions of macOS apparently require that you turn off System Integrity Protection to use it, but it's not an extension.

t has a number of drawbacks that make it clear you should not use this on most computers.

What are those drawbacks?

Guy Harris gravatar imageGuy Harris ( 2024-01-18 20:24:27 +0000 )edit

But if the usb is plugged from computer to printer, I need to have wireshark inside the computer right?

Right.

I cant get info with another computer

No, you can't. There might be hardware that you could connect the computer and printer to - think of it as like an Ethernet tap, but for USB - that might be able to capture the raw USB traffic.

Guy Harris gravatar imageGuy Harris ( 2024-01-18 20:26:09 +0000 )edit

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Asked: 2024-01-17 23:42:25 +0000

Seen: 438 times

Last updated: Jan 18