General Computing

Can a desktop (windows 7) Wifi adapter serve as a Wifi Access Point (not ad-hoc nor bridge)?

I was reading the many differences between Access Point, Bridge, Ad-hoc or hot spot networks, and as you may tell from the title I'm a bit confused. From my understanding based on the their difference Access Point is the best solution for me since it has the least amount of speed penalty for the devices that connect to it.

The Problem:

I have a Netgear WNDR3800 router in my leaving room. I have a desktop computer running Windows 7 in my bedroom connected via Ethernet cable to that router. I have poor wifi signal in my bedroom and I would like to boost it with the least amount of speed penalty since I like to stream media from my desktop to my wirelessly connected laptop over the network. In order to boost the signal I can buy an Access Point and place it in the bedroom. However, I have only one wire going from the router to the bedroom and if I connect it to the Access Point then my desktop will loose the wired connection.

Instead of buying an Access Point, is it possible to buy a desktop wifi adapter and have it serve as an Access Point to boost my wifi signal?

I know you can bridge the ethernet connection with the wifi adapter to create a new network? is it the same? Also, you can do ICS in windows?


I've used it for a long time with on Windows 7. See the top answer in this post: Internet connection sharing over WIFI without modifying LAN adapter IP address

I've created two batch files, one for setting up the wifi, and one for teardown. The first one:

netsh wlan set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=<YourSSID> key=<YourPassword> keyUsage=temporary
netsh wlan start hostednetwork 

The second one:

netsh wlan stop hostednetwork

I just run the batch files as admin - and everything works.

P.S. On Windows 8 however I have a little trouble with this.

Edit: You should enable internet connection sharing in your Ethernet connection, to be used by the new virtual connection (your wifi).

Comments (2)

  • +0 – Thanks, I will give that a try. It also mentions Connectify software which I'm also tempted to try. (Here is some additional information about Hosted Networs link follow the links in the comment) Edit: @David Schwartz makes a good point regarding general performance with this type of solution. — Dec 06, 2012 at 19:33  
  • +0 – @HerpDerp: I've used Connectify for a while, but the newer version's shareware scheme is annoying - especially when you can do it yourself with a couple of lines. As for performance - I guess be sure to try with an 802.11 n adapter. — Dec 06, 2012 at 19:47