Create a WIFI hotspot from a WIFI-enabled PC, with Winhotspot

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If you have a single PC with WIFI access and you would like to use that connection to broadcast A WIFI signal to other devices then read on: Winhotspot is one of the simplest FREE virtual WIFI programs available, and possibly the easiest to use.

Windows 7 (and above) supports the broadcasting of a WIFI connection as a virtual WIFI hotspot. This can actually be done manually, but you can think of Winhotspot as a GUI interface that makes broadcasting a virtual hotspot a very simple process as easy as pressing a button. It is also 100% free software

How it works:

Download and run (the program is a single executable that does not require installation). In the main screen (above) simply enter a name for the hotspot network and a password. The ‘share internet’ dropdown should be inactive unless you have multiple wired/wireless connections coming in. Click ‘Start’. Unless the program displays any prompts such as ‘enable wireless adapter’ (accept) or anything of the sort, you should be up and running. You can click on the ‘clients’ tab to see the devices that are successfully connected to your WIFI hotpot (screenshot below).

WinHotSpot Screenshot1

Troubleshooting:

This program requires Windows 7 or above, and requires that the MS .Framwork 3.5 be installed on your machine. Clicking the ‘show repair tools’, button (bottom left) will display shortcuts to some troubleshooting tools. To learn more on troubleshooting go to these pages on the program page itself: How to Configure (which walks you through activating .NET framework), or try the ‘Fix Obtaining IP Address’ page.

WinHotSpot Screenshot2

The verdict:

Freewaregenius 5-Star Pick

I am well aware that there are a handful of such free utilities (Virtual Router, mHotspot, Virtual Access Point (web app), and others). In my experience, however, some of these suddenly become feature limited or shareware (e.g. Connectify), and some aren’t as simple or easy to use as they should be, so Winhotspot is a welcome alternative, and the go-to virtual server app of the moment as far as I am concerned).

Note on downloading: make sure to download the latest version, as previous versions are also available on the download page. Also note that the latest version is a web downloader that likely includes other ‘offers’ for non related installs. Uncheck these if you do not want them.

Get Winhotspot here. (Requires MS .NET Framework 3.5).