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How to enable Windows 10 Personal Hotspot to share internet connection to other devices[tutorial]

One of the good things that Windows 10 operating system brings is the feature called Hosted Network. This feature works like your mobile hotspot and/or tethering feature in your mobile, effectively turning your laptop into a wireless hotspot. This is an especially useful feature if you are in a situation where there’s no available access point to allow you to connect your other wireless devices to the internet. For instance, you may find yourself connecting your laptop to a single Ethernet cable. As long as that laptop supports Hosted Network, you can convert it to a hotspot  to let other devices connect to the internet.

Although Hosted Network can be a reliable access point to share internet connection, we won’t recommend that you do it as the permanent solution for a physical router/access point. Not only will it cause faster wear and tear on your laptop but using Hosted Network can also slow down connection speeds dramatically compared to a real access point. This limitation is especially pronounced when you’re downloading files or streaming. There will not be much difference when you’ll only be browsing on connected devices though.

Using Hosted Network is also limited in the fact that it only works when your computer is powered on. Once your machine restarts, goes on sleep or hibernate mode, your wireless hotspot will disappear. You’ll then have to manually start Hosted Network again to use it.

Despite these restrictions, Hosted Network can be a worthwhile access point option should a situation arise needing it.

This short Windows 10 tutorial walks you through how to check if you laptop supports Hosted Network, how to set up Hosted Network, and how to stop or remove the feature altogether from your machine.

Before we proceed to the main topic though, we would like to remind you that we accept requests for assistance regarding their Windows computers. If you have a problem that you can’t seem to find a solution to, send us your issue by following the link at the bottom of this page. Just remember, windows problems can sometimes be difficult to diagnose so kindly make sure that you give us very detailed description of the problem. You want to mention relevant history that may have led to the issue. The more information that you can provide, the higher the chance of us diagnosing the issue more efficiently. We also expect that you mention whatever troubleshooting step/s that you may have done before contacting us in order to prevent repeating them in our article. Again, the more details you can give us, the faster it is for us to pinpoint the cause and its corresponding solution.


How to check if your Windows 10 laptop supports Hosted Networks

Most network adapters in many laptops today support Hosted Networks already but to be on the safe side, you can double check it. This won’t take long and very easy to perform. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Right-click on the Start button.
  2. Select Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. If User Account Control prompt appears, hit Yes. Otherwise, just ignore this.
  4. Once you’ve opened the elevated Command Prompt, type in NETSH WLAN show drivers, then hit Enter.
  5. In the generated report, look for Hosted network supported line. If it says Yes, then your machine supports personal hotspot feature.

NOTE: If your laptop does not support Hosted Network in Windows 10, you can buy a USB wireless adapter that supports Hosted network.

How to configure your Windows 10 laptop to start sharing internet connection (as a personal hotspot)

Just like in checking Hosted Network capability, you’re going to perform some commands in the Command Prompt to set a wireless Hosted Network. Don’t worry, it’s easy and doesn’t require any advanced coding knowledge. Just follow the steps below and you should be good to go.

  1. Right-click on the Start button.
  2. Select Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. If User Account Control prompt appears, hit Yes. Otherwise, just ignore this.
  4. Enter the following command in the Command Prompt: NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=Your_SSID key=Your_Passphrase

In this command, you’ll notice that there are two things that you need to add — the SSID and SSID key. SSID refers to the name that you can want to call your personal hotspot. This will be the visible wifi network name for those who will try to connect to your wifi later on. SSID key refers to the password or passphrase for your wifi network.

Here’s an example of the entire command: NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=TheDroidGuy key=tDG_123!

  1. Once you’ve typed in the correct command, hit Enter.
  2. In order to start using Hosted Network, activate it by entering this command: NETSH WLAN start hostednetwork.

How to share internet connection of your Windows 10 laptop

Now that Hosted Network in your laptop is set, you need to perform one more procedure to begin sharing your connection to other devices. This is done by enabling Internet Connection Sharing feature in the wireless adapter.

  1. Open Power User menu by pressing Windows key + X.
  2. Select Network Connections.
  3. Right click on your wireless adapter that has internet connection. An active wireless adapter that has internet connected is usually indicated by a green signal bars icon. If you are connecting your laptop via ethernet cable, select Ethernet instead of the wireless adapter. In this screen, you’ll also see a new Microsoft Hosted Virtual Adapter named Local Area Connection* X and with your created SSID. Just ignore it.
  4. Select Properties.
  5. Click the Sharing tab.
  6. Click on the box for Allow other network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection option.
  7. Under Home networking connection drop-down menu, select the Microsoft Hosted Virtual Adapter.
  8. Click OK.

You can now let other wireless capable devices to connect to your personal hotspot.

How to temporarily turn off internet connection sharing (personal hotspot) in your Windows 10 laptop

Should you want to turn off personal hotspot in your Windows 10 PC temporarily, these are the steps that you need to do.

  1. Right-click on the Start button.
  2. Select Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. If User Account Control prompt appears, hit Yes. Otherwise, just ignore this.
  4. Type in NETSH WLAN stop hostednetwork.

To turn personal hotspot on again later on, just follow steps 1-3 again and enter NETSH WLAN start hostednetwork.

How to change Hosted Network mode in your Windows 10 laptop

Hosted network mode can be changed too. You want to do this in case you need to turn Hosted Network for a longer period. You can do so by following the steps below:

To enable Hosted Network, type in:

NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork mode=allow

To disable Hosted Network, type in:

NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork mode= disallow

How to change Hosted Network SSID or Passphrase in Windows 10

If you want to change the network name (SSID) or password (passphrase) of your Hosted Network, you can use the following commands in elevated Command Prompt:

NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork ssid=Your_New_SSID

NETSH WLAN set hostednetwork key=Your_New_Passphrase

How to check other Hosted Network settings in Windows 10

Two other commands can be used to get more details about your Hosted Network.

If you want to know the SSID, max number of clients that can connect, type of authentication, and cipher, you can use this command:

NETSH WLAN show hostednetwork

If you need to see the current security key together with other related settings, try this:

NETSH WLAN show hostednetwork setting=security

How to permanently remove Hosted Network settings from your Windows 10 PC

While temporarily disabling Hosted Network may work for most users, some may want to totally purge the configurations from their machine for whatever reason. If you’re one of them, the steps below should help.

Before you proceed, be sure to back files you can’t afford to lose and create a System Restore Point. The steps below involves modifying the Registry. The registry is a database that Windows and programs use. Any accidental deletion of a critical file or folder in the registry can seriously lead to problems so be sure you’re ready when it occurs. As long as you follow the steps below though, you need not worry.

  1. Open the Start menu by clicking the Start button.
  2. Search for regedit and open it.
  3. Scroll down the following path in the Registry: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\system\currentcontrolset\services\wlansvc\parameters\hostednetworksettings
  4. Right-click the HostedNetworkSettings DWORD key
  5. Select Delete.
  6. Click Yes to confirm deletion.
  7. Restart your computer.
  8. Open to the Command Prompt and use the following command: NETSH WLAN show hostednetwork

Once you have successfully deleted the settings when the Settings field reads Not configured.

Now that you’ve completely removed the registry entry for Hosted Network, you then need to turn off “Internet Connection Sharing” in the network adapter. Here’s how:

  1. Open Power User menu by pressing Windows key + X.
  2. Select Network Connections.
  3. Right click on your wireless adapter that has internet connection. An active wireless adapter that has internet connected is usually indicated by a green signal bars icon. If you are connecting your laptop via ethernet cable, select Ethernet instead of the wireless adapter. In this screen, you’ll also see a new Microsoft Hosted Virtual Adapter named Local Area Connection* X and with your created SSID. Just ignore it.
  4. Select Properties.
  5. Click the Sharing tab.
  6. Uncheck the box for Allow other network users to connect through this computer’s Internet connection option.
  7. Click OK to finish.

 


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