Have you ever been someplace with your laptop and there is only one Ethernet connection in the wall like a hotel room or an office space. You have multiple people who need access to the internet, or you have a portable device like an IPad, IPod touch, or Droid device that only connects to the internet wirelessly and there is no WiFi. Well fear not, you can turn your laptop into a WiFI hot spot, here’s how:
Windows 7 is pretty easy to set up, you download and run a free, open source program called Virtual Router. This free program which also works with Windows Server 2008 R2. I’ve used Virtual Router to connect up my iPod Touch to the WiFi transmitting from my laptop. It works great, and it’s simple to use. You give your server a name and a password then any Wifi device can connect up to your Hot Spot. A Laptop, Smart Phone, iPod Touch, iPhone, Android Phone, Zune, Netbook, wireless printer, etc. These devices connect to Virtual Router just like any other access point. You can share any internet connection (WiFi, LAN, Cable Modem, Dial-up, Cellular, etc), and for security the connection uses WPA2, which is the most secure wireless encryption.
For Vista, XP, and MAC OS10 here is a great Cnet Video that will show you how to set up a secure hotspot with your laptop by simply changing some settings it up in your operating system. XP takes a little more work but it’s still not too hard to do.