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I will have access to a prepaid wireless internet service that is pay per device. I would like to connect multiple devices to it. Is there a way that I can pay for the service for my Win XP laptop and then setup as server and other devices (xbox and ipad) route through laptop as clients?

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Other than the legal implications yes you can.

  • You can either upgrade the OS and it can broadcast from the PC over the WLan connection (Google Virtual Router).
  • You can bridge the connection (Virtual Router does that too) to an ethernet/Lan port and connect a router to it.
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Another possible alternative is Connectify Hotspot

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This is a paid version that has hundreds of free alternatives. This feature has been built-in to Windows since Vista (not all WLan interfaces supported). All these do is manage the Windows utilities, why pay for that. – Monso Sep 19 '13 at 20:20
There is a free Lite version, which is why I suggested it. – Yass Sep 19 '13 at 20:22

Yes, but you will need one device to act as the "bridge" for the other devices. The other devices will only be able to route through the laptop if you can connect to two wireless networks simultaneously, or if you have the other devices connect over Ethernet.

You should know that service providers have ways of checking for un-authorized device bridging, and could kick you off for violating their terms of service.

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