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When a device has multiple wifi adapters, is it possible to select which one is used for Windows 10's mobile hotspot feature?


I am trying to connect my tablet directly to my laptop for better performance in in-home streaming (Steam Link iOS app). However, when both the laptops's connection to the internet and its hotspot use the builtin Wifi hardware, I am experiencing significant stuttering. In terms of a ping from tablet to laptop I am seeing lost packages and latency spikes.

After connecting a USB Wifi adapter I have noticed, that Windows 10 will still use the builtin wifi hardware for creating the hotspot.

Is it possible to tell Windows 10 to use the builtin Wifi adapter for connecting to the internet, and the USB-adapter for providing the hotspot?

Workaround (limited/inconvenient)

Since posting the question I found, that I can work around the problem by connecting the USB Wifi-Adapter to the home-wifi. Enabling mobile hotspot then (presumably) uses the built-in wifi adapter, allowing the following topolocgy:

                                       +-------------------------+
                                       |Win10 Laptop             | 
                                       |                         | 
[ISP-Router] ------ (HomeWifi) --------|-[USB-WifiAdapter]       | 
                                       |                         | 
                                       |                         | 
                                       |                         | 
[iPad] -- (Win10MobileHotspotWifi) ----|-[Built-in Wifi Adapter] | 
                                       +-------------------------+ 

It isn't a full solution however, as I can attach a more powerful antenna to the USB-Adapter, but not to the built-in adapter, for streaming across room boundaries. Additionally, when pluggin in the USB adapter this way instead of only enabling the hotspot, more steps are needed:

  • Disable the connection of the builtin-adapter to the Home wifi
  • Enable connection of the USB Adapter to the Home wifi
  • Enable mobile hotspot.
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It has already been answered here few times but any way. The only way to select adapter for Mobile Hotspot (or for any other WiFi Direct feature) is to disable all other WiFi adapters, then create/start what you need and then enable all other WiFi adapters back.

  • That won't result in the needed solution though, since it isn't possible to start mobile hotspot while no adapter is connected to the wifi. – kdb Jun 13 at 9:37
  • What do you mean by "no adapter connected to WiFi" WiFi is wireless. You can not plug any phisical device to electormagnetic waves. – Mike Petrichenko Jun 13 at 10:11
  • The device has two wifi adapters (builtin and USB). The builtin adapter is meant to connect to the wifi network of the house; The USB adapter is meant to provide the „mobile hotspot“ in order to allow connecting directly to the laptop for streaming applications. By default Windows 10 uses the builtin one for both tasks, which I suspect is the cause for periodic latency spikes, that sabotage game streaming, hence my attempt to use the separate USB adapter. – kdb Jun 16 at 9:02
  • As I wrote in the answer there is NO WAY to specify whcih WiFI adapter must be used for ANY WiFi Direct operations. HotSpot is WiFi Direct feature. To be able to use specific WiFi adapter for WiFi Direct (Hot spot) you have to DISABLE one of them (which must not be used for WiF Direct), Start HotSpot and then ENABLE the disable WiFi adapter back. This is the ONLY way to do what yo uneed on Windows. – Mike Petrichenko Jun 16 at 10:08

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