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Portable hot spot for Chromecast in a hotel?

Posted on 2015-01-04
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Last Modified: 2015-03-10
Traveling  soon.  I have tried every way imaginable to use a Chromecast in a hotel that has their "first log in" step.  I have looked on Amazon for personal hot spots.  They range from $15 to $100, with review comments all over the map.  I believe what is needed is a wifi hot spot with CAT5 connection to the hotel, then I log into the hot spot with my notebook and the chromecast logs into the same wifi.  Would appreciate recommendation for a unit, hopefully about $25, that you have actually used and it worked without probllems.
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Question by:Mike Caldwell
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by:kevinhsieh
kevinhsieh earned 668 total points
ID: 40530936
It sounds like what you need is any basic home wireless router. The WAN port of the router can connect to the hotel's wired network. You can then use a laptop (or phone) to connect to your wi-fi and logon to the hotel's network. That way the hotel will only see the MAC address of the router, and they won't know that you have multiple devices behind that router.
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by:Mike Caldwell
ID: 40531059
Figured that, just looking for a smallish portable type.  Somehow $10 with poor reviews doesn't sound likely, and $90 doesn't sound worth it.  I tried using my cell phone hot spot, but without a CAT5 connection I couldn't work it out.
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Craig Beck earned 668 total points
ID: 40531330
Get yourself something like the TP-Link N150 Wireless Travel Router...

http://www.tp-link.us/products/details/?model=tl-wr702n

This can do a variety of things, but here I'd try this...

1] Configure the N150 as an access-point.
2] Connect your laptop to the hotel's wireless and log-in.
3] Configure ICS on your laptop, using the wireless connection as the shared connection and the LAN port as the ICS port.
4] Connect the N150 to your laptop's LAN port.
5] Connect the Chromecast to the N150 wirelessly.
6] Connect your phone/tablet/whatever to the N150 wirelessly and cast to the CC (or cast from Chrome on your laptop).
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by:lherrou
lherrou earned 664 total points
ID: 40531340
Old Mike,

Here's a couple of options for you:
http://www.amazon.com/D-Link-App-Enabled-Dual-Band-Broadband-DIR-820L/dp/B00CL58K0Y/
http://www.amazon.com/Medialink-Wireless-N150-Travel-Router/dp/B00MTVE6WQ/
http://www.amazon.com/TP-LINK-TL-WR700N-Wireless-Portable-Repeater/dp/B006DEBYWU/

The first one I personally have used. It's a tiny bit bigger than a coke can, plus you have to carry power adapter and CAT5 cable. However, I have used it at various places around the world, and even provided WiFi to co-workers in nearby rooms when we were in hotels in places where only wired internet was available.

The other two are smaller, and I haven't personally tried myself, but are designed for exactly the situation you describe, and seem to have decent reviews. WiFi distance will be a lot less, but they are a lot smaller and lighter.

Cheers,
LHerrou
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by:Mike Caldwell
ID: 40531664
Thanks all, just what I needed.
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Expert Comment

by:cescentman
ID: 40639461
I know this is closed but connectify allows you to turn your PC/Notebook into an AP
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Author Comment

by:Mike Caldwell
ID: 40640780
Thanks.  I bought a portable personal wifi router, but it still didn't work because the hotel was wifi only.  A router expects to connect via CAT5, then be a hot spot via wifi.  I can't tell, but I think Connectify would have that same issue, right?
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by:cescentman
ID: 40640786
Not absolutely sure. I'm just testing my Chromecast now and have Connectify. I'll have a play. Might be a couple of weeks before I get round to it though.
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Expert Comment

by:kevinhsieh
ID: 40640792
A Wi-Fi router should not depend on WAN connectivity for the wireless inside (LAN) networking to work properly.
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Expert Comment

by:cescentman
ID: 40640793
PS Connectify uses the WiFi connection on your laptop and then creates an additional AP linked to the same WiFi card on the laptop. I can imagine that at the very least it would allow you to connect a Chromecast and a phone to the WiFi network it cretes.
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Author Comment

by:Mike Caldwell
ID: 40640887
The problem I had was that the wifi router had to enter a password to go beyond the hotel browser splash page.  Perhaps it could be done, but I could not connect PC to router, then get the hotel splash.  From the router documentation it seemed clear that the router needed a CAT5 connection, then it could take all comers through its wifi, but it needed two channels and only had one.  So maybe I just couldn't figure it out.

But I bought Connectify, installed it on my notebook after first disconnecting the CAT5 from the notebook and connecting it to my router via wifi.  Then I set up Connectify (very clear handholding progressive fill in the blanks with explanations), connected to the PC to the wifi router, then my phone to the PC via the Connectify wifi.  At one point in the documentation it even bragged that one could connect to Connectify whilst it is connected to my wifi router.  Sooooo, cesentman, you are very correct and it works well and I think you.  Wish I could post-send you 500 points.

BTW: I got the $12 entry system.
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Expert Comment

by:kevinhsieh
ID: 40640901
I forgot that Chromecast doesn't work without Internet access.
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Expert Comment

by:cescentman
ID: 40641177
No sweat it's great you have a solution. I'd be interested to know if you can you cast from the laptop too?

I use Connectify a lot. I got the bundle. I must admin I've yet to work out how to use the rest of the bundle. Time is always so short to explore ...
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Expert Comment

by:cescentman
ID: 40656500
:>}€


"I'd be interested to know if you can you cast from the laptop too?"
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Author Comment

by:Mike Caldwell
ID: 40656888
I tried last night, with my notebook as the hot spot, using the Android Chromecast app and a chromecast.  Could not get everything to connect, but I had that problem before any of this.  I'm leaving for a few days in San Diego in the morning; will give it the ultimate hotel test there.
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by:cescentman
ID: 40656893
Excellent, I'll look forward to hearing.
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