How do I share the network in my hotel room?
I travel to a lot of conferences and often find myself in hotel rooms that have Internet connectivity, but it's hardwired only. If I have a colleague or friend sharing my room, we end up having to pay for each computer that hooks up to the network, which stinks. Stay at a place for a week and it's an extra $70-$100 so we can both be plugged in. Surely there's a better solution?
There certainly are lots of better solutions. The way that these networks differentiate between your two computers, by the way, is by the MAC address, the unique sequence of letters and digits that describes your computer, and your computer alone, on the network. For example, my computer's MAC address is 00:0a:95:b7:7e:c4.
I've always thought it was ridiculous for hotels to charge by MAC address, not by room, actually, but it's easier to work around the problem than to change hotel connectivity policy, in my experience.
Here's how I turn my hotel Internet connection into a wireless network:
It's the Apple Airport Express, and while it's not the cheapest or smallest wifi base station you can buy, it's still pretty darn small and if you're paying an extra $70 per week in a hotel for a second network connection, it'd only take you two weeks of hotel usage to have it pay for itself at about $125 or so.
I often find that I have two, three or more people hanging out in my hotel rooms at events too, actually, and the really great thing about the Airport Express is that everyone can connect simultaneously to the Internet. Great for bloggers, that's for sure! :-)
There are doubtless other solutions you could explore if the Airport Express seems a bit too pricey, but I can only talk from my own experience, which is that I've been traveling with one of these units for years and even when I have a hotel room to myself, I love being untethered from the Ethernet jack in the wall.
Even nicer, you can tell your friends who are in the rooms adjacent to your hotel room that they can share the network access too, so they can also save money on Internet and you can ostensibly save more than the $125 unit cost in just a few days (and maybe those folk would be willing to contribute $20 each to the cause too).
In any case, good luck to you!
Oh, and since you're moving into the world of wireless Internet connectivity, don't forget to check out the Connect Safely Wireless Security and Privacy Guide my colleague Chris and I wrote. It's a must-read for anyone using - or hosting - public networks.
More Useful Computer and Internet Basics Articles:
✔ How do I blur my house on Google Maps Street View?
I was poking around on Google Maps looking at satellite views of my neighborhood and when I switched to street view, was upset...✔ Create a custom vanity URL for Kickstarter?
I was reading some updates on Twitter and saw someone had posted a URL that would let me see what projects they'd backed...✔ Export or Save Subscription List from Google Reader?
Just heard that Google Reader is going away this summer. That stinks! How am I supposed to read my RSS feeds? More importantly,...✔ Shrink or Reduce a Photo File Size on Mac?
I'm trying to upload some photos to a social media site and it's complaining that they're too big. They are, as they come...✔ Can I organize my Yahoo Mail with folders?
I've been on Yahoo Mail for years and while most of my friends are now on Gmail or their own Web-based email programs,...
Let's stay in touch!
Sign up for my weekly AskDaveTaylor Newsletter and you'll receive even more tech and gadget help right to your inbox, along with exclusive news and industry updates. It's good stuff. I promise!
I do have a comment, now that you mention it!
Check This Out Too...
Look for Answers
All Our Categories
Apple iPad Help
Articles and Reviews
Auctions and Online Shopping
Blogs and Blogging
Building Web Site Traffic
Business and Management
Computer and Internet Basics
d) None of the Above
Google Gmail Help
Google Plus Help
Industry News and Trade Shows
iPhone and Cell Phone Help
iPod, Sony PSP and MP3 Player Help
Kindle Fire Help
Mac OS X Help
Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Shell Script Programming
Tech Support Video Help
The Writing Business
Twitter, LinkedIn and Social Network Help
Unix and Linux Help
Video Game Tips and Help
Windows PC Help
Find Me on Google+
ADT on G+