Windows 8 and 8.1 has built-in faxing capabilities. Ready to learn how to easily fax from your Windows 8/8.1 PC? Find out today in our complete tutorial.
If you need to send out a fax immediately, I would just sign up for an online fax service like RingCentral Fax.
RingCentral Fax is a computer service that offers a 30 day free trial and then its $12.99/mo which is cheaper than other email fax providers (MyFax, EFax, RapidFax & MetroFax).
Three Easy Ways to Fax in Windows 8 or 8.1
There are three main ways to send and receive a fax in Windows 8 or 8.1, including:
- Online Faxing
- Windows Fax and Scan (comes pre-installed on all Windows 8/8.1 systems)
- Connected Fax Machine
Out of all of these options, online faxing is probably the easiest. However, it also costs money if you plan on regularly sending faxes. If you already have a fax machine, then the other two options are free.
Online Faxing in Windows 8 or 8.1
Online faxing can be done on just about any operating system: all you need is an internet connection. You can online fax from most mobile and desktop platforms and Windows 8 and 8.1 are no exception to that rule.
When online faxing in Windows 8 or 8.1, you first need to sign up for an online fax provider. Typically, these providers have plans that allow you to send a small number of faxes for free for your first month. Others will actually let you send single page faxes for free as many times as you like (your fax just gets sent with an advertisement for the faxing service).
Online faxing comes with a number of great benefits, including fewer overhead expenses (you’re not buying paper or ink) as well as greater convenience (you can send and receive faxes from mobile devices on-the-go).
With Windows 8 and 8.1, online faxing is as easy it is on all other operating systems. Here’s the step by step process:
Step 1) Sign up for an computer fax provider
Step 2) Receive your online faxing phone number
Step 3) Open your email inbox in your internet browser in Windows 8/8.1 or open Outlook (whatever you would normally use to send an email)
Step 4) Type in your recipient’s fax number into the “To” field. You need to type it in a special form for online faxing. You type your recipient’s number followed by the website of your online fax service. For example, firstname.lastname@example.org would be what you type in if you were trying to fax 123-4567.
Step 5) Fill out the body of your email with any text you want. This will be delivered in the form of a cover letter prior to the main fax you’re trying to send.
Step 6) Attach documents you’re trying to fax to that email. Most online fax services accept popular file formats like PDF and DOC or DOCX without issue. These files will be converted into faxes once they arrive at the online fax service’s servers.
Step 7) Once you’ve filled out your body and attached the document you want to fax, you can click Send.
Your email will be delivered to the electronic fax service’s servers and then sent through the phone lines to your recipient. That’s it.
Alternatively, some online fax services provide built-in software platforms or apps that let you send faxes without going through your internet browser or email inbox. This is an alternative way to online fax through Windows 8 and 8.1
Most users will find that online faxing is the easiest way to fax through Windows 8 and 8.1. The other methods require a little more preparation and equipment – like a fax machine and active phone line. All online faxing requires is an internet connection.
Online faxing also has the advantage of being accessible on all internet-connected devices – which is helpful if you’re using a Windows 8 or 8.1 tablet. If your device can connect to the internet, then you won’t have any trouble sending a fax with most major online fax providers.
Faxing through Windows Fax and Scan
Windows Fax and Scan is a built-in software with Windows 8 and 8.1. Using Windows Fax and Scan, you can basically turn your computer into a fax machine.
Windows Fax and Scan lets you send faxes directly from your Windows 8 computer just like you would send them if you were sending an email.
You don’t even have to install this tool: it’s already pre-installed on all Windows 8 and 8.1 operating systems.
Here’s what you need to fax using Windows Fax and Scan:
- A computer running Windows 8 or 8.1
- A modem or fax board on the computer (if your computer has a phone jack, then it probably also has a modem or fax board inside)
- An active phone line you can send fax data through (you cannot use VoIP phone lines because they scramble fax data)
- A document you want to send
Once you have these things, you’re ready to turn your Windows 8/8.1 machine into a fax machine.
Some other things to know about this method include:
- Your computer always needs to be on and connected to the phone line if you wish to receive faxes automatically
- Your computer needs an active phone line – Windows Fax and Scan does not work over an internet connection
- It’s totally free if you already have a phone line. You also don’t need a fax machine.
How to Setup Windows Fax and Scan
If you’re running Windows Fax and Scan for the first time, then you’ll need to spend a bit of time configuring it. To do that, start the program through the Start menu, then click on Tools and Fax Accounts. Select Add to find your fax model and have it installed, then choose whether you want automatic or manual answering on your phone line.
You can find additional customization options under Tools and Fax Settings, like the ability to choose reconfigure whether you want automatic or manual reception, or if you want to change the number of rings before automatic pick up. You can also change your TSID and CSID information or setup Windows Fax and Scan to automatically save or print a fax the moment it arrives.
How to Send a Fax in Windows Fax and Scan
Step 1) Type “Fax” into the Windows 8 search bar and click on Windows Fax and Scan or press Enter
Step 2) You’ll see a window with a toolbar pop up. In the top right corner of that menu, click New Fax. If this is the first time you’ve sent a fax, then you’ll be redirected to the new fax wizard, where you can configure how you want to customize how your faxes appear.
Step 3) Create your fax and then enter your recipient information.
Step 4) Click send to send your fax to the recipient’s fax machine.
How to Automatically Receive Faxes in Windows Fax and Scan
Receiving faxes in Windows Fax and Scan is just as easy. Setup your fax service using the following steps:
Step 1) Open Windows Fax and Scan
Step 2) At the bottom of the left pane, click Fax
Step 3) Click Tools and then click Fax Settings
Step 4) Click the General tab and then look for the section called Allow device to receive fax calls. There will be a button underneath called Send/Receive Options. Check that button.
Step 5) Configure the “Automatically answer after ___ rings” setting to choose how many times you want your phone to ring before the fax is automatically received by Windows 8/8.1
You can also manually receive faxes in Windows 8 or 8.1 – which is useful if you don’t want your computer to constantly act as a fax machine. To setup your computer to manually receive faxes, click the Fax option at the bottom left pane in Windows Fax and Scan, then click the Receive a Fax Now button. You will be able to receive the fax when the phone rings.
Faxing Using a Fax Machine or Printer Connected to your Windows 8/8.1 PC
This is the only method on this list that actually requires a fax machine (you can also use a multi-function printer, which is a printer that can copy, fax, scan, print, etc.).
With this method, you’re connecting a printer to your computer and then running built-in Windows software – like Windows Fax and Scan – or your fax machine manufacturer’s software to send and receive faxes.
The specific setup varies according to the fax machine’s manufacturer and the software offered by that manufacturer. Some software, for example, allows you to send and receive faxes directly to the computer through the fax machine, which means you don’t have to print off the document and manually scan it through the fax machine.
What you need for this method:
- A computer running Windows 8/8.1
- A fax machine or multifunction printer that supports faxing directly from Windows 8 or 8.1
- An active phone line connected to the printer or fax machine (VoIP phone lines won’t work because they scramble fax data)
- A document you want to send
Once you have these things, all you need is to connect your Windows 8/8.1 PC to your fax machine, which can typically be done over USB or through Bluetooth.
Your fax machine should come with Windows 8/8.1 compatible software. Run that software to interact with your fax machine. Typically, this software will have customization options that let you configure exactly how you want to fax. You can choose whether or not you want to automatically receive faxes, for example, and what kind of pages are included with the faxes you send.
If you already own a fax machine, then this may be the easiest way to send and receive faxes through a Windows 8 and 8.1 PC. This method relies on equipment you already own and a phone line that’s already active: there’s no need to buy additional equipment.
Ultimately, online faxing is probably the easiest option for the average user – especially if you don’t have a fax machine or active phone line. With online faxing, all you need is an internet connection. You can also send and receive faxes from more than just your Windows 8 computer; you can send and receive them from any internet-connected device. And with a wide variety of online fax service providers available today, it’s never been easier to fax from Windows 8 or Windows 8.1.