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How to Fax from a Computer – Software, Online Services, and More

Technology has enabled the merger of faxing into the world of the computer.

We’ve provided a comprehensive guide to all the ways to fax from a computer.

Table of ContentsHow to Fax From a Computer

Fax from a Computer using an Online Fax Service

The quickest, easiest way to fax from a computer is to use an online fax service.

These services give you a dedicated fax number, either local or toll free, and let you fax from your desktop or email inbox.

An online fax service will let you simply manage your faxes as easily as email or printing a file – other than a simple installation, there is little to set up, and you can integrate most of your software to manage your fax services.

Usually, an online fax service is more cost effective than the costs of managing an extra fax line – there are services that will let you fax from your computer for as little as $5 a month – usually about the same cost as a shared phone line with a second phone number and dual ring (and with less complication) and far less than the $15-40 that a dedicated phone line, as well as long distance charges, can cost.

Fax from a Windows 7 Computer

Windows 7 contains software already includes the ability to fax from your computer.

Required Software & Hardware

To send (or receive) a fax from a Windows 7 Computer you’ll need the following:

  • A computer running Windows 7
  • Modem or Fax Board on the computer (the majority of computer that have a telephone line connection have this ability)
  • A Phone line to fax with. A phone connection from a local phone provider is preferred, as opposed to a phone connection from a VoIP provider – this is to ensure that the fax is properly transmitted
  • A document to send

It’s important to be aware that to use a Windows 7 computer as a fax machine, the computer needs to always be on to receive a fax.

Windows 7 Fax Operation

To use the Windows 7 Fax, you need to use the “Windows Fax and Scan” program.

  1. Click on the START button, select All Programs, and select “Windows Fax and Scan”
  2. On the toolbar that appears in the program, select “New Fax” – if this is the first time that a fax is being sent, you’ll be directed to the new fax wizard. This will allow you to set all the required settings to send a fax.
  3. Create your fax, and then click send to send it to the receiving fax machine.

Sources and Additional Resources:

Fax from a Windows Vista Computer

Windows Vista contains the program “Windows Fax and Scan” that allows you to fax directly from the computer.

Software and Hardware Requirements:

To send (or receive) a fax from a Windows Vista Computer you’ll need the following:

  • A computer running Windows Vista
  • Modem or Fax Board on the computer (the majority of computer that have a telephone line connection have this ability)
  • A Phone line to fax with. A phone connection from a local phone provider is preferred, as opposed to a phone connection from a VoIP provider – this is to ensure that the fax is properly transmitted
  • A document to send

It’s important to be aware that to use a Windows Vista computer as a fax machine, the computer needs to always be on to receive a fax

Windows Vista Fax Operation

To use the Windows Vista Fax, you need to use the “Windows Fax and Scan” program.

  1. Click on the START button, select All Programs, and select “Windows Fax and Scan”
  2. For the fax view, select fax from the bottom left pane
  3. Create a fax in the new fax window, select the options you’re looking to use, and then send your fax

Sources and Additional Information on Windows Vista Faxing:

Fax from a Windows XP Computer

To send (or receive) a fax from a Windows XP Computer you’ll need the following:

  • A computer running Windows XP (You may need the Windows XP CD to help configure the software)
  • Modem or Fax Board on the computer (the majority of computer that have a telephone line connection have this ability)
  • A Phone line to fax with. A phone connection from a local phone provider is preferred, as opposed to a phone connection from a VoIP provider – this is to ensure that the fax is properly transmitted
  • A document to send

It’s important to be aware that to use a Windows XP computer as a fax machine, the computer needs to always be on to receive a fax

To fax from Windows XP, you’ll need to do the following:

1) From the Fax Console Program:

  • - Select the start button, chose “All Programs”, “Accessories”, “Communications”, “Fax”, and “Fax Console”
  • - Click “New Fax” or “Send a Fax” from the “File” menu

2) From the Print Box:

  • - From the program you want to fax from, select “File” and “Print”
  • - Choose “Fax” from the Print Dialog Box, enter any necessary information, and press “Ok”

3) From the Control Panel in Windows XP:

  • - Select the start button and enter the Control Panel
  • - Select “Printers and Other Hardware”
  • - Click “Printers and Faxes” then “Send a Fax”

To use the Windows XP Fax, you need to install then use the “Fax Console” program.

Fax from a Linux Computer

Faxing from a Linux computer involves looking at both the system of Linux you are using, as well as your individual needs for a faxing program.

In the faxing world, Linux based systems are used to run everything from smaller programs replacing a home based fax system, to large enterprise level fax servers and even some of the larger online fax systems that offer services individual clients.

The more popular faxing programs for the small and home office that work with Linux are:

Ubuntu Linux:

VM Ware’s UbuntuFax

Linux Fax Server Programs (Mostly Enterprise Level):

Hylafax

Esker Fax

Fax2Send

MessagePlus / Open

More How To Fax Resources: