Windows 7 comes with a new feature that allows computers that run it to be converted more easily into a virtual WiFi hotspot, a hub to which other devices including smartphones and internet appliances, can connect seamlessly.
So why would you convert your computer into a wireless router? For a start, it removes the need to have yet another peripheral, especially useful when you roam along or travel in group plus it saves power especially if you intend to use it on a 24 hour basis.
Then there’s the fact that a computer that’s used as a wireless router is more easily upgradable, just use another WiFi adaptor; this means that an old P4 computer can become a 802.11n WiFi router just by adding a £20 card.
Indeed, even a laptop can be transformed into a wireless router and most recent ones already have a 802.11n adaptor already. Finally, an adhoc wireless router reduces security risks because it would be created on demand rather than always left on as routers are normally.
Arguably, you don’t get the four LAN ports you usually get on a router but if wireless is your preferred mode of connection, then why not.
Windows 7 was supposed to offer a Virtual WiFi option as an integral part of its feature list but that never happened. A nifty little application called Connectify enables the miracle to happen. Connect any internet line to your laptop for example and Connectify will transform it into a generic provider of bandwidth.
This works as well for mobile broadband dongles, cable, ADSL and even tethered phones. We have yet to see whether it can actually be used as a repeater though (albeit an expensive one).
Connectify uses features that are present in all versions of Windows 7 (except Starter edition) and Windows Server 2008 R2 onwards. It won’t work with other current Windows OSes with or without service packs.Leave a comment on this article