Now on to HomeGroup
The Windows 7 HomeGroup feature enables you to share libraries and (more importantly, at least in my case) printers easily on a home network, a great boon for SOHO environments.
Homegroups are password-protected to maintain a level of privacy and security, so that only those who belong to a specific homegroup can interact with its shared resources.
In my case, I didn't find it necessary to share an entire system for the sake of printing, so I opened the HP LJ4 to the home network instead.
To access HomeGroup settings, open Control Panel, select Network and Internet; then click the HomeGroup entry. The applet specifies whether you already belong to a homegroup or gives you the option to join a new one.
Click the Change advanced sharing settings link (which is also accessible through Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network and Sharing Center > Change advanced sharing settings).
Underneath the Home or Work network profile is an entry for File and Printer Sharing. Ensure that file and printer sharing is turned on by selecting the appropriate radio button. You can also enable password-protected sharing and allow Windows to manage your homegroup connections. Be sure to click Save changes when you're finished.
Windows 7 takes strides in the right direction to maintain your old and new devices and equipment, as evidenced by the fact it supports my nearly voting aged HP LJ4 printer.
HomeGroup settings allow me to continue sharing this printer with other computers on my office network, and it all comes with great ease and accessibility. You might not find support for every old computer peripheral out there, but you may be pleasantly surprised at how well Windows 7 supports a variety of aging peripherals that you might otherwise toss out.