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Yeah, this is the best way... but you'll have some trouble with your router...
Originally Posted by illwood
Here's why, your router does several things:
- DHCP server (assigns IP addresses)
- Serves as internet gateway
- Sometimes functions as DNS
If you have a total of 4 computers on the network, and they're all connected to the router, simply setting up Internet Connection Sharing will not work for the other computers on the network unless you do the following:
- Have the router stop routing traffic through the WAN port, and instead route traffic to the address/information on the laptop to which is tethered to the phone. Even after doing this, you have to ensure that DNS is working right for all of the hosts--some ISP's DNS servers will not serve up addresses unless the request comes from its own network. In this case, you'll need to use a generic DNS server.
- Or, manually assign IPs/default gateway/DNS to all hosts on the network and manually assign the gateway information on each host to the laptop, which will serve as the gateway
Lastly, the "BEST" option is to use the wifi hotspot/router feature on the phone. =) It may just be simpler (assuming physical locations / range limits can accommodate this) to grab $10 PCI wifi cards for the desktops and connect all the computers to the phone.
I use my phone as a backup ISP... but it's perhaps only once a year or so that this becomes necessary. During that time we just tether off the phone only using laptops for one night.