How to Make Your Computer a Wi-Fi Hotspot?

In a perfect world, you’d connect all of your gadgets to a single Wi-Fi network and be instantly connected to the internet, but that doesn’t always happen. Perhaps your hotel only has one Ethernet connection, or perhaps your airline’s Wi-Fi costs you per device, and you’d like to pay once for your laptop and phone. In some cases, you’ll need a mechanism to share internet access with another device.

If you don’t have a mobile hotspot and can’t turn your phone into a hotspot (for example, on an airline), you can share your PC’s internet connection with other devices through Wi-Fi. Here’s how to make your PC a wireless hotspot.

How to Share a Windows 10 Internet Connection?

If you’re using a version of Windows 10 after the Anniversary Update, you’ll have this functionality built-in. You may also share your Wi-Fi internet connection with other devices without the use of an Ethernet cable.

windows 10 hotspot

Simply go to Network & Internet > Mobile Hotspot in Windows 10’s settings. The “Share my Internet connection from” box should default to the network adapter that is presently connected to the internet; however, if you are currently connected through Ethernet and Wi-Fi, you may select which connection to share using this box.

Choose whether you want to share over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth—you probably want to share via Wi-Fi—and then click the “Edit” button to provide a name and password for your new network. When you’re ready, toggle the Mobile Hotspot switch at the top of the settings to the on position, and use your newly established credentials to log in from your phone or another device.

Because of the inefficiencies of Wi-Fi sharing, you may experience slower internet when doing this. Still, it’s better than nothing, especially in a pinch.

How to Use Connectify to Share Your Internet Connection?

Older versions of Windows had internet sharing built-in as well, but these techniques may be highly fussy. Ad-hoc networks, which are meant to share your Ethernet connection with other devices through Wi-Fi, may be created by Windows 7 users.

Windows 7 Hotspot

Unfortunately, this strategy has rarely worked for me in the past, so I’d classify it as more effort than it’s worth. (To test it out, go to the Start menu and search for “Manage Wireless Networks,” then click the “Add” option to create a new ad-hoc network.)

Instead, free third-party tools such as Connectify operate well with Windows 7, 8.1, and 10. It not only allows you to share your Ethernet connection over Wi-Fi, but it also allows you to share your Wi-Fi connection over Wi-Fi. You may adjust different features of the connection to match your needs if you purchase one of the more feature-rich premium versions. However, the free version should be sufficient for most individuals in a pinch.

Connectify will take you through the process, but here’s the gist: choose the Wi-Fi Hotspot button, select your Ethernet or Wi-Fi connection from the box at the top, and then click the Start Hotspot button.


Connectify will produce the network name and password for you (with paying customers having the opportunity to personalize them), and you should be able to join by entering those credentials into your phone, tablet, or another device.

It may take a minute for the hotspot to start, and I had occasional dropouts in my testing, but it’s still far superior to attempting to connect to an ad hoc network. If you want to use this function frequently, your best bet is to update to Windows 10.

How to Share Mac’s Internet Connection?

For quite some time, Apple’s macOS has had internet sharing built-in, and it’s really simple to use. Simply navigate to System Preferences > Sharing and select the Internet Sharing option from the sidebar. Any of these protocols can be used to share a connection from Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Thunderbolt, or FireWire to PCs.

Mac Hotspot

However, you cannot share using the same protocol that you are now using to access the internet. (This means you can’t share your Wi-Fi connection over Wi-Fi—you’d have to share Ethernet over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth over Wi-Fi.)

Choose the choices you want—in my example, I’m sharing the internet from my Ethernet connection to other devices over Wi-Fi—and then click the Wi-Fi Options button to configure the name and password for your resultant network, if required. Then, on the sidebar, tick the box next to Internet Sharing to create your hotspot. You should be able to access the internet regularly by connecting your other devices over Wi-Fi (or Bluetooth or Thunderbolt).

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