Hosted networks, also known as virtual networks, have been around since windows 7. Typically, you could create a hotspot through group policy settings or via the command prompt. But now, starting with Windows 10 build 14316, you can easily set up a hosted wireless network through its settings. In addition, you can activate an existing access point via bluetooth using another device. In addition to internet sharing, this feature is also used by applications to share files and data. they will not have to request uses to manually activate the access point and connect.
There are different windows 10 devices where you can allow another device to start your hotspot via bluetooth. The hotspot needs to be set up on your phone or on your computer or any other Windows 10 device. Most people use laptops and mobile phones and that is what we will cover in this article. If you have set up a hotspot on your laptop, you can turn it on using your windows phone. Vice versa, if the hotspot is on your mobile phone, you can turn it on using your laptop. the second device sends a signal via bluetooth and invokes the first device’s api to activate the access point. then it automatically connects to the available network.
Prerequisites: Here are the things you need to have to activate hotspots via bluetooth:
- both devices must have bluetooth. the bluetooth of both devices must be working/on and paired
- if you are running the hotspot on your pc you must have at least windows 10 build 14316 to configure the hotspot which allows other devices to connect start is via bluetooth. your computer must also support hosted networks to set up a hotspot.
- if you are running the hotspot on your mobile phone, you must have at least windows 10 mobile to set up the hotspot that allows other devices to start it via bluetooth. you must also have an active data plan on your phone
- both devices must be running a windows operating system. other operating systems, e.g. android and ios are not supported yet.
To find out what version of windows 10 you’re running on your computer, press windows key + r to open run, type ‘winver’ and press enter. To find out if your computer supports hosted networking, type “netsh wlan show drivers” in the command prompt window and press enter.
If you meet all the prerequisites, here’s how to set up a hosted network that other devices can activate via bluetooth.
Step 1: Set up a hotspot on your windows 10 computer or mobile phone and allow another device to activate the mobile hotspot
The first step is to set up a hotspot on your computer or mobile phone. choose the device you want to switch remotely and set up an access point on it.
here’s how to set up a hotspot on your windows 10 computer
- open settings.
- click network & internet.
- click mobile hotspot.
- change “activate remotely” to activated. Please note that both devices must have bluetooth enabled and must be paired.
- click the edit button if you want to change the network name and password.
- under share mi from internet connection, select the wi-fi adapter you want to share so that other devices can access the internet.
- click the switch to turn on mobile hotspot.
Here’s how to set up a hotspot on your windows 10 mobile phone
- first unlock your phone, swipe down the notification center and you will see the “mobile hotspot” option. click this option and it will take you to the access point settings. in case you don’t see the option, open settings > network and wireless > mobile hotspot.
- turn on the hotspot option and you can see your phone appearing as a wi-fi connection on other devices.
- if you want to change the ssid (the wi -fi name) and password, click the edit button at the bottom. here you can add your own name and password.
- at the bottom there is a button that says “allow another device to turn on mobile hotspot”. both devices must have bluetooth activated and be paired”. turn this toggle button to the on position to enable remote switching.
step 2: pair your pc and phone
To pair, one of your devices must be visible/searchable by the other device.
- on your phone, go to settings > bluetooth. turn on bluetooth. if there is an option ‘make this device visible to other bluetooth devices’, click it to allow visibility.
- then using the windows key combination + i, open the settings app .
- navigate to devices and go to bluetooth.
- make sure the bluetooth switch is in the on position. (you’ll know it’s working because you’ll notice the message that says “your pc is searching and can be detected by bluetooth devices”.)
- select the device you want to connect and click pair .
- a code will appear on the screen and will also be sent to your phone. if both codes are the same, click bind/yes/connect to allow the binding to complete.
You can also connect two computers making one visible to the other. you can configure the visibility from the bluetooth settings of your pc.
Step 3: Start your mobile hotspot remotely
After pairing both devices, make sure they both have bluetooth turned on. To make sure remote switching via bluetooth works, first turn off the access point on both devices.
- turn on wi-fi on the device you want to use to turn on the other’s hotspot.
- if your bluetooth is on, the other device should appear in your wi-fi list. fi. eg on your phone, go to settings > Wi-Fi > turn on wi-fi and find your device in the list. on your computer, you can click the Wi-Fi icon in the system tray (lower right corner of the task bar) and see the device in your list.
- click/tap the access point and click ‘connect’ .’, this will automatically activate the other device’s access point and connect to it.
- if asked for a wi-fi password, enter the password and connect (you will only have to do this once)
other than bluetooth being turned on for both devices, your phone must have an internet connection and mobile data must be turned on; otherwise the access point will not be activated. the only caveat with the wireless hotspot feature is that you are limited to sharing your internet connection with up to 8 devices.