Connectify turns Windows 7 into a Wi-Fi hotspot

Wi-Fi

Free software app takes advantage of Microsoft code to turn Windows 7 into a virtual hotspot

A new piece of software claims to turn a Windows 7 PC into a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Called Connectify, the software takes advantage of code that was written into Windows 7 by Microsoft, but not completed before the release of the operating system. It essentially turns a PC's wireless adapter into a hotspot, which can be used to share an internet connection with other PCs, smartphones or other wireless devices.

The Connectify software allows you to stipulate a name and password for your virtual hotspot, and all the data passed over the connection is protected by WPA2 encryption.

The software differs from the ad-hoc Wi-Fi mode that's been available in Windows for many years, because it appears to other computers as an ordinary wireless hotspot, and doesn't require any special configuration.

The software's makers claim Connectify could come in very handy at paid-for hotspots. "You're sitting in a coffee shop that charges you for a wireless connection. With Connectify, I can pay for that connection, and still have all my other devices, like my iPhone, connected to the internet," Alex Gizis, the CEO of Connectify's publisher, Nomadio, told PCWorld.com. The software could also turn a Windows 7 PC into a Wi-Fi signal repeater, potentially saving the need to spend money on additional hardware.

Unfortunately, the software failed to work in our brief tests this morning, with Connectify failing to recognise our laptop's wireless card. Download the free Connectify beta and let us know how you get on on comments below.

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