Connectify.me is a new service we just found out about. They've sussed out how to make any Windows 7 computer into a WiFi hotspot. Since we just installed Windows 7 on a spare laptop, we figured it was about time to make Windows do something cool, so we installed the app.
We were quite literally up and running with other devices connected in five minutes. In fact, this post is being published right now on a Connectify.me-powered connection. Windows 7 users have got to try this app. You never know when you'll get to save the day by letting other users share your Internet connection.
Speaking of which, use cases we can think of right now run the gamut between Sticking It To The Man and Violating My ISP's TOS; nevertheless, it's an interesting, fun little hack that should've been done long ago.
Installation is simple. Go to the website, click the big, shiny button, run the .exe file, follow the prompt. You'll then see a Connectify logo in the notification tray. It's party time! Choose a name, set up a password, and click the big, shiny button. Congratulations. You're now a software-based wireless router. It took about five very obvious clicks and was truly so easy a caveman could do it.
This is almost as much fun as that MiFi we played with a while ago. The main difference is that the MiFi creates an Internet connection for 3-5 users using cellular networks, and Connectify allows multiple users to piggyback off a single connection. Oh, and the MiFi and similar devices cost a bit - or a lot - to buy and maintain, but Connectify is free to install and run.
Connectify runs on Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 r2. Why no other Windows OSes, you ask? "Connectify depends on improvements made in Windows 7 to operate," reads the site's FAQ. "Frankly, Windows 7 is such a big improvement that we suggest you're better off upgrading than waiting for us to get all this working on an older version of Windows."
Three cheers for Windows for getting their act together on the OS front, and many thanks to Connectify for bringing us all n-for-the-price-of-1 WiFi!