I'm currently using Internet Sharing from my Ethernet over Airport on my Macbook Pro, however I don't want my SSID broadcasted. There doesn't seem to be an option in Sharing/System Preferences to hide my ssid or prevent broadcasting. Any ideas?

My parent's restaurant has a wifi router, but it's on the roof level where the cable was installed. The signal it gets is weak, but works for the macbook. Their iPhones and 802.11G based computers can't get the wifi connection, maybe 802.11N on the macbook gets better penetration. I figure they could use the airport sharing from the laptop. For a restaurant type setting I don't think having WPA or WPA2 is super important. There's nothing sensitive or insecure on the network, so I figure hiding the SSID would be good enough for their purposes. It's not even active 100% of the time.

  • As for your "For a restaurant type setting I don't think having WPA or WPA2 is super important. There's nothing sensitive or insecure on the network" -- don't forget people might use your connection to get onto the internet, even if they don't care about your information. Apart from spamming, this might also be an issue if your country enforces any data retention policy (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telecommunications_data_retention).
    – Arjan
    Nov 18, 2009 at 11:20
  • 1
    ...and as an example: "Pub fined £8K after user infringes copyright with its WiFi" -- A British pub has been fined £8,000 because someone using the WiFi there allegedly committed a copyright infringement. Even though British law exempts people who provide Internet access from liability for their users' copyright infringements, the pub was still fined (the details of this are confused). More at boingboing.net/2009/11/28/pub-fined-8k-after-u.html
    – Arjan
    Nov 29, 2009 at 14:59
  • Jack, use the [osx] tag if you're referring to Apple's operating system. use the [mac] tag if you're referring to the computer hardware. i'd retag this [osx] since it appears you're asking about settings in the OS. Apr 12, 2010 at 23:03
  • Thanks quack. There must have been a bug earlier today. The osx tag was showing 0 results and a 0 counter in the tag, I thought maybe osx was just being retagged in favor of the mac tag, so I retagged my mac questions.
    – Jack Chu
    Apr 13, 2010 at 9:57

2 Answers 2


I do not believe you can do this. Here is some further discussion.

In a nutshell: No, you can't do it, and even if you could, it's pretty useless. Considering the limitations of Internet Sharing, which is meant for quick-and-dirty ad-hoc networking, it's definitely worth spending a few bucks to pick up a cheap router or signal booster instead.


The Internet Sharing feature in Mac OS X (GUI wise) is very limited - it does not have the ability to use WPA or disable the broadcast of it's SSID.

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