Bridging an Ad Hoc Wireless Network

I wanted to wirelessly share a network my laptop was physically connected to, so I thought I’d give WinXP’s adapter bridging a try, bridging the wireless and wired network devices.

It seemed to work – I set my computer to create an adhoc network (enabling the option to always connect).  The other computer saw the adhoc network and got an address from DHCP supplied from the LAN I was connecting to… but it couldn’t access the network and was unpingable from my laptop.

Research revealed the problem is that my laptop’s WLAN driver (Intel) reports that it supports “promiscuous mode” when it doesn’t. This is resolveable by forcing Windows to use a workaround for when promiscuous mode isn’t available in an adapter. This is done as follows.

(in cmd)
netsh bridge show adapter

This should show the network devices in the bridge. Use the ID of the wireless device, mine was 1. Then issue:

netsh bridge set adapter 1 enable

With this, the other compouter was able to access the LAN via the bridged WLAN.

It should now work (dont think I had to reboot).

Don’t be disappointed to see “Not Connected” on the Wireless Networks list. The status doesn’t seem properly reported. Also its WEP only do keep your shares locked down.