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How to set up a VPN-protected Wi-Fi hotspot using Windows?

Let’s take a look at how you can set up a VPN-protected WiFi hotspot using a Windows computer. It’s a handy method that provides VPN access to your SmartTV,  gaming console, or any other device that doesn’t have native VPN support.

To follow along you will need a Windows computer, the Surfshark VPN app, and an active Surfshark VPN subscription, which you can purchase here.

Here is our detailed tutorial on how to easily do this on your WIndows.

  1.  Firstly, right-click the Wi-Fi or Wired connection icon on your Windows toolbar.

    Open_network_settings.png

  2. If you are connected to the internet via Wi-Fi, go to the Wi-Fi tab. 

    If you are connected via Ethernet cable, choose Ethernet.

    Click_Wi-Fi_or_Ethernet_section.png

  3. In the next window, scroll down a little and you will find a setting to 'Change adapter options'. Click it.

    Click_Change_adapter_options.png

  4. A window with all network adapters installed on your device will show up. 

    In this picture, network adapter no.1 is Surfshark TAP (you can see the Surfshark name there). Usually, it's called Ethernet 2.

    The second adapter is the Wi-Fi adapter that allows connecting to a Wi-Fi network.

    Keep this window open and proceed to the next step.

    All_network_adapters.png

  5. Next - we will activate Hotspot on this WIndows device. 

    Right-click the network icon on your Windows toolbar and choose to Open Network & Internet settings again.

    Open_network_settings.png

  6. Go to the Mobile hotspot section.

    Click_Mobile_Hotspot.png


  7. Turn on the Mobile hotspot by moving a switch. 

    Underneath, you will see information about this Hotspot network.

    Network name is the name of the network that will appear on other devices when searching for new Wi-Fi connections.

    Network password is the password that you will need to enter in order to connect to this network.

    You can set your preferred name and password by clicking Edit.

    Turn_on_the_Mobile_hotspot.png

  8. You will notice that a new network adapter has appeared. This adapter will be used to share the internet connection from your Windows PC.

    New_network_adapter.png


    So the Hotspot has already be activated, we're almost there! Just one more thing we need to do in order to protect this Hotspot network with a VPN connection.

  9. Right-click the network adapter of Surfshark and go to Properties.

    Go_to_the_properties_of_Surfshark_adapter.png

  10. In the pop-up window, go to the Sharing section.

    Check the first box (Allow other network users to...)

    Also, choose the name of the network adapter that will be used. 

    Make sure that you choose the name of your Hotspot network adapter (the new one that has appeared after enabling Mobile hotspot).

    Finally, click OK.

    Go_to_Sharing_section_and_choose_the_adapter.png


  11. All you need to do now is connecting to a VPN.

    Firstly, launch the Surfshark app. Go to Settings -> Advanced -> Protocol and change the default protocol to OpenVPN (UDP).

    Change_the_protocol_to_UDP.png

  12. Connect to your preferred location.

    Connect_to_the_Surfshark_server.png

That's it, you have now successfully enabled the VPN-protected Wi-Fi hotspot on your Windows!

All devices connected to this Hotspot network will be protected with a VPN. 

Let's do a quick test!

Try to search for new Wi-Fi networks using your phone. You should find a new network with the name you have chosen for your Hotspot. Or the default name of your Windows if you have not changed it.

Connect to it and enter the password. Refer to step 7 if you can not remember the password.

Search_for_a_new_Wi-Fi.png



Now if you go to the ipleak.net or any other website to perform an IP test, you will see your new IP address from the Surfshark server that you have connected to on Windows. You can refer to this tutorial on how to make sure the connection was successful.


IP_leak_test_shows_the_new_IP_and_DNS.png

 

If you have any troubles setting up the Hotspot, feel free to contact our Customer Success Sharks anytime. You can do that by clicking Live chat or Submit a request buttons at the bottom of this page.

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