Sharing LAN Internet: Use a “Virtual Router”


In my apartment I have a LAN (“cable”) internet connection. I recently got a second laptop which I would like to connect to the internet as well. Every attempt to do so failed, until an hour ago.

I cannot split the cable, because my MAC address is (uniquely) registered with my landlords (the internet connection can only be accessed by the computer with the registered MAC address). Also, my landlords forbid to use routers, so the LAN cable will have to be my access point.

The past days, I have been fighting to share this LAN connection. The most viable option seemed to be to set up an “ad hoc network“. This way, a wireless connection is establised between two computers, which is used predominantly for sharing files. However, it can also be used for sharing an internet connection. It worked for a couple of days, but somehow the “client computer” does no longer have the right credentials, since status reports indicate that it has “no access”.

An hour ago, I stumbled on the perfect and easy solution: a virtual router. Via a series of complex commands, you can transform your computer into a WiFi Hot Spot. Your computer basically becomes the router.

Fortunately, these commands can be avoided. Via this website you can download a simple programme. When downloaded, just install it. There are no difficult questions or options to deal with. When installed, execute the programme. You will be shown something like the below:

VirtualRouter

You can change the network name (“Virtual Router”), but it does not really matter. Choose a password and the connection you like to share (if you are connected to a LAN connection, as I was, the right connection is selected automatically). In the picture above it says “Stop Virtual Router”, because my virtual router is up and running, but when setting it up it will say “Start Virtual Router”. Hit it.

Now, nearby devices can connect to the network just like you would connect to any other (password protected) WiFi network. Easy! And yes, devices! You can now connect with any device that has the right wireless capacities: phones, iPads, laptops, etc. In my case, this may help me not to break my phone’s internet usage limit! Finally, using virtual routers (and the programme that establishes the virtual routing network) is FREE!

Good luck!

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