My desktop is connected to my home WiFi network using a USB WiFi dongle (managed by windows). The LAN port on the desktop is empty.

I am working on a microcontroller project where I need a ethernet internet access, so is there a way I can connect my project to the internet by somehow tunneling the connection through my desktop LAN port?

OS: Windows XP


One of the quickest and cheapest ways to do this is to create and use a crossover cable. Here is a site that shows you how to create and use one:



Starting in Windows 98 SE, Windows offers such a feature, and it's called Internet Connection Sharing.


It uses NAT (Network Address Translating) and DHCP features to route Internet connection from an adapter into another one.

  • I read on some some site that this would only work is the windows pc is the only dhcp server on the network. So in my case since the router is the dhcp server, so this won't work. Is that correct?
    – Ankit
    Jul 27 '14 at 17:38
  • Actually, the more efficient solution is to read about "how to use your pc as a router". You can set a flag in the registry with regedit.exe that will allow to use your computer as a router, then creating a second IP address in the network properties, setting your IP manually, creating a route table to forward internet packets through this connection, etc. But for an easy solution, just taking the time to activate the good options in ICS should suffice and being really straightforward.
    – leye0
    Jul 28 '14 at 13:30

If I am understanding the question, there is a solution. I'm not on my windows box right now, so I can't walk through it step by step. You have to create a network bridge:

In control panel, go to Network and Sharing Centre > View network connections, select both your wireless card and your LAN card (hold ctrl, and click each), right click either of them and select "Bridge Connections". There may be some additional configuration, but as far as I can remember, this will do the trick.

Edit: I forgot a crucial piece of information. In order for the laptop to communicate with the desktop, you MUST either use a crossover cable or have a switch between the devices.

  • This works. I connected my laptop to the desktop using crossover cable and was able to access internet. However do ports need to be specifically on such bridged connections ? Reason being my microcontroller project when connected like this is not able to send out yep packet to an ip address whereas its able to send just fine when connected directly to the router
    – Ankit
    Jul 27 '14 at 17:41

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