I attempt to share a WiFi-Internet connection with an Ethernet port. The Wifi is secured with an enterprise 802.1X authentication (so there is no preshared password like in home Wifi's).

Whenever I bridge the WiFi adapter with the Ethernet adapter, the Internet connectivity breaks (right click -> bridge in Windows 10 system control panel).

As soon as I remove the bridge, the WiFi adapter restores the Internet connectivity. Configuring any static IP addresses does not work.

It appears to me that the bridge destroys the wireless configuration. How can I configure a Windows 10 bridge that leaves the wireless configuration unchanged? (note that I do not care about the Ethernet configuration as long as I have a working Internet gateway)

8 Answers 8


Wi-Fi cannot be bridged to Ethernet. This is not a Windows limitation in any way. There’s a good explanation on why that is in the old OpenWrt wiki.

Instead, you should use Internet Connection Sharing (ie. make your PC a router):

  • Go to the Network Connections control panel (where you’re currently trying to create the bridge)
  • Open your Wi-Fi connection’s properties.
  • Switch to the “Sharing” tab
  • Enable it, selecting your Ethernet connection as the “Home networking connection”.

Everything should automatically work after that.

  • 6
    But sir, it created NAT connection, what if there is a requirement of bridge connection? i.e. the IP of VM should be similar to the external(LAN) network.
    – Mayur
    Jun 21, 2019 at 9:20
  • 5
    "Wi-Fi cannot be bridged to Ethernet" -- This statement is not true. Your link is talking about it not being supported by OpenWrt. That doesn't mean it's not possible at all.
    – Kelly Bang
    Jan 6, 2021 at 0:25
  • @KellyBang You didn't read the link properly. It's helpful to read the text and look at the diagram. "The 802.11 standard only uses three MAC addresses for frames transmitted between the Access Point and the Station. Frames transmitted from the Station to the AP don't include the ethernet source MAC of the requesting host and response frames are missing the destination "ethernet MAC to address the target host behind the client bridge."
    – hookenz
    Feb 15, 2021 at 18:19
  • 1
    This answer is incorrect. I bridge my ethernet to my Wifi all the time to connect an OpenWRT router when I'm going to do something like replace the WPAD software package, which must be done over ethernet.
    – Brain2000
    Dec 27, 2022 at 1:39

Wi-Fi CAN be bridged to Ethernet on Windows 10.

  1. Connect to Internet via WiFi.
  2. Take note of your private IP settings
    (e.g. IP: SM: GW: DNS:
  3. In Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network Connections, highlight WiFi and Ethernet (use shift click or Ctrl Click or shift arrow key). Rt-click on highlighted area and choose "Bridge Connections"
  4. At this point, hosting PC will likely lose Internet especially if you connect a device on the Ethernet port.
  5. To correct this loss of Internet on "host PC", go to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network Connections, and double-click "Network Bridge" to open Network Bridge Status dialogue.
  6. Click Properties button (might be slow to populate, be patient)
  7. Highlight WiFi in top box
  8. Double-click IPv4 in bottom box to open IPv4 Properties
  9. Select "Use the following IP address" and manually fill in settings recorded from step TWO.
  10. OK your way out
  11. Enjoy Internet on both your "host PC" as well as add-on device connected to host PC via Ethernet (extension of your WiFi network).

Note1: This also works with LAN-LAN bridge

Note2: I disabled IPv6 on "wireless bridge" but probably unnecessary.

  • tl;dr Set static IP on the bridge. Thanks, this worked for me Aug 30, 2021 at 11:31
  • Network Bridge continued to be in unidentified stage. Had to let windows troubleshoot this network bridge and in a minute or so it worked !
    – Ajay V
    Dec 10, 2021 at 23:29
  • @00prometheus the answer spans less than a single screen length on my mobile device, and is in no way overly verbose for someone unfamiliar with network configurations attempting the subject matter. Of course, those of us who know how to configure a static address or reserve one wouldn't be here reading this Q&A to begin with, but my point is this answer is already lean enough to be regarded as being direct and concise. You can always improve it but suggesting an edit that doesn't lose out on efficacy in assisting its intended audience, though.
    – Arctiic
    Aug 10, 2022 at 1:40
  • @Arctiic My comment wasn't meant as a critique, I am sorry if I phrased it to be interpreted that way. I simply wanted to give a quick summary on what you explained (and explained well to those that need it) so that experienced people could get a shortcut. Aug 10, 2022 at 14:53
  • For you Cisco people, think of the network bridge device as a layer 3 interface connected to multiple layer 2 interfaces that you bridged together. The layer 3 is where you set up the ip address/gateway for your laptop so you can continue to communicate.
    – Brain2000
    Dec 27, 2022 at 1:43

Not only can you do it. I was able to keep the internet flowing into my host computer.

First create your bridge. then remove and add your components to the bridge until you have internet flowing into your clients.

then use another adapter to open the flow of internet back into your host.

Easy peasey, nice and easy.


I need to add my two cents to this.

There seems to be some confused posters here...Let me clarify.... This is for accessing internet through a wireless card on a Windows machine and sharing it through a wired LAN segment with NO NAT in between. IN this way the LAN segment is on the same subnet as the wireless. T

I currently have a wireless bridge running on Windows 10 x86-64. This bridge connects wirelessly to the internet by way of my LAN and bridges to a VoIP telephone device (which has a built in second port configured as a hub, and a second device that is a very old NAS.

The only issues I have are:

  • It must be manually started when I restart windows (which is what I was searching for when I found this)

  • I must MANUALLY set IP addresses on the ethernet device on the wired side of the bridge. (this was something I actually anticipated and it is because of some of the same reasons pointed out on this thread)

I am currently investigating why this will not auto-reconnect (how I found this thread) to the wireless network when Windows is started but that is the only real issue I have with it. The fact that it can not use DHCP does not really bother me as I use mostly Fixed IP addressing with these kinds of devices anyway.

I think DHCP will even work given the right set of hardware. As I recall it is a limitation of most wireless cards. Linux does not "fix" this issue as it is a limitation of the wireless cards. Only a few wireless cards have the ability to pass on the MAC address of the connected ethernet device for a DHCP request.

As for my intermittent connection issue.....I found that assigning a Fixed IP to the bridge (as suggested elswehere here) seemed to allow Windows to auto connect. It did however take several attempts and I still have not attempted to use a DHCP client on the LAN cable side.

  • Rather than configuring a static address, can't you just reserve the address assignment on your router's table? That way you leave it as DHCP without throwing a wrench into things and your router will just renew the lease with the same address, at least as I understand it.
    – Arctiic
    Aug 10, 2022 at 1:46

It can be done, but it's not always easy/straight forward. Whenever my bridge breaks, it usually takes me a few hours to get it working again.

In my case, I have a TL-WDN4800 (my Wi-Fi card) bridged with the Intel Ethernet port on my GA-Z170X-Gaming7. Some guides will tell you it matters what order you add everything to the bridge in.

Most recent experience:

  1. Create the bridge starting with the WiFi adapter. Next add the Ethernet adapter. (You can try doing both at the same time).
  2. Machine likely needs a reboot in order to recognize the bridge properly. Mine did last time. Do it for good measure.
  3. Connect to your Wi-Fi, if it doesn't automatically connect. I usually have to manually reconnect.
  4. Profit.

In my case, I'm bridging to my Unraid server, where I've set what IP it should use on the local network. If you check the Network Bridge in your Network Connections, my speed usually shows the combined speed of the bridged connections.

Ex. my Wi-Fi is a 450 Mbps connection, Ethernet is a 1 Gbps, Network Bridge shows 1.4 Gbps.


Well it still works. I am using bridge connection with my 1 Gbps Ethernet and 65 Mbps Wi-Fi and by somehow it managed to get 1.5 Gbps (I don't know if it is a bug or true, but I am sure that is what it tells me)

  • Steps to explain how you do it, would be useful. Otherwise, this seems more like a comment than an answer. Aug 20, 2020 at 2:53

Someone seems a bit techy about my phrasing?

The complete answer to the question isn't simplistically that it's impossible, but rather

a) While Linux does this seamlessly with Hostapd, Windows cannot yet* because it does not have support for wifi AP mode, only Station mode (-Thanks Daniel)

b) Windows does provide a partial workaround:

The first step is to use ICS and set up a mobile hotspot (as described by Daniel). This gives internet access to hotspot clients, however the clients are not visible over the lan because they are on a separate subnet (and Windows does not yet bridge this).

The second, cumbersome, part to access hotspot clients from the lan, would be setting up ssh or equivalent tunnel(s) from lan clients to the Windows Hotspot PC and then on to the clients.

C) While you could do this if you were tied to Windows, all told it would be easier at the moment to use Linux or a hardware solution by buying a $50 Wifi AP.

*However I've heard of, but not yet tried Connectify which may now let Windows do this seamlessly too. Can anyone confirm?

  • HostAPD is for using a Linux Box as an Access point thus it is named Host access point daemon . This discussion as I understand it is about connecting by wireless and sharing over ethernet. Also HostAPD in itself does not resolve the DHCP issue that you will have, as it usually is running with a separate DHCP server and NAT and is more Like Windows Internet Connection Sharing for that reason. Aug 9, 2022 at 23:16

I've been bridging a WiFi to Ethernet for along time now so it can be done and it is easy and straightforward. Just highlight both connections right click and select bridge connections and you're done. I don't think you can add them one at a time as suggested above, you need two connections to create a bridge, it won't work one at a time.

However, the problem you are experiencing is that the Bridge is not picking up an IP address from your router and because it has no address it's no longer part of the network and cannot communicate so breaks the internet connection. I'm assuming that the WiFi is the path to the router and the Ethernet connection is to a NAS or something next to your computer?

This also happens to me periodically and I haven't figured out why it does it. Basically, the bridge will assume the name of your WiFi connection when it has an IP address and will change to unknown network when it hasn't got an address. I can go for weeks and it works fine and then it will just drop the network connection and won't reconnect until I reboot the computer and can take ages once I've done that. My thoughts are that the IP address gets renewed by DHCP periodically (IP Lease time) and for some reason on this occasion it won't pick up a new address when it's time to renew it. I think many modem/routers have a very short lease time like 1 hour by default. Perhaps try increasing the lease time to several days and then it might not happen as often.

In fact I just checked mine and it was indeed set to 1 hour. The maximum I could set it to was 21 days or 504 hours which I have done.

I'm winging this as I go along and I thought why not assign a static address to eliminate any DHCP issue and negate lease times. So I created a static lease in the router and manually applied it to the bridge so we'll see how that goes.

Hope this is of help.

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