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Cannot connect Win 8 to external ad-hoc network - connectivity always "limited" and bogus IP address

    Question

  • I have tried lots of different ways of connecting my Windows 8 (Pro 64bit) machine to an external ad-hoc network, but the connection is always listed by Win 8 as "limited". Additionally, if I set the connection as dynamic (DHCP), then Windows retrieves a bogus IP address from the connected peer, which seems like a major bug in Windows 8. If I boot into Win 7 (on the same machine), I can connect to the ad-hoc network with no problems whatsoever, and Win 7 gains full Internet access via the peer's shared Internet connection. Windows 8 seems terminally incapable of achieving this. Does anyone know of a method?

    Please don't suggest ways of *creating* an ad hoc network on the Win 8 machine using netsh and the hostednetwork interface. That's not what I'm looking for (and hostednetwork is *not* ad-hoc, it's infrastructure). Nor do I want to set up an infrastructure-mode access point on the peer (which is not a Windows machine anyway). I can't change the connection type on the peer I want to connect to. It's ad hoc, and I need to connect to it. As I said, Win 7 connects to it easily and instantly, giving me full internet connectivity.

    I've tried setting the Win 8 wireless NIC to static, entering the precise connection information retrieved from the successful Win7 connection to this ad-hoc network. For info, the required static settings are:

    Configuration for interface "Wi-Fi"
         DHCP enabled:                         No
         IP Address:                           192.168.2.2
         Subnet Prefix:                        192.168.2.0/24 (mask 255.255.255.0)
         Default Gateway:                      192.168.2.1
         Gateway Metric:                       25
         InterfaceMetric:                      25
         Statically Configured DNS Servers:    88.82.13.60
         Register with which suffix:           Primary only
         Statically Configured WINS Servers:   None

    I can set these using the "netsh interface ip set" address / dns commands. However, Win 8 still says the connection is "limited", and the peer doesn't show my machine as connected (even though Win8 thinks it is). I have also tried other IP-address ranges, to no avail. If I change the NIC and DNS back to dynamic, and reconnect to the ad-hoc network, this is now what I see with the show config command:

    Configuration for interface "Wi-Fi"
         DHCP enabled:                         Yes
         IP Address:                           169.254.110.122
         Subnet Prefix:                        169.254.0.0/16 (mask 255.255.0.0)
         InterfaceMetric:                      25
         DNS servers configured through DHCP:  None
         Register with which suffix:           Primary only
         WINS servers configured through DHCP: None

    Note the bogus IP address Win 8 seems to have "retrieved" from the peer, with no DNS and no Gateway. NB, this IP is not one my usual Wi-Fi router serves. What on earth is going on here? If connections to external ad-hoc networks are no longer supported in Win 8, why does the system pretend to allow a connection, but one that is utterly useless? I know setting up / creating an ad-hoc network is no longer supported in Win 8, but it seems bizarre that the ability to connect to one and do something as simple as share the peer's Internet connection appears to have been removed too. Is there some "hidden" way to re-enable this ability?


    • Edited by Peribanu Tuesday, January 01, 2013 8:49 PM Clarification
    Tuesday, January 01, 2013 8:41 PM

All replies

  • Before you speak about major bug in W 8, do deeper analysis. At least with network monitor and inspect logs on "transmitter side".

    Rgds

    Milos

    Tuesday, January 01, 2013 10:13 PM
  • Turn off the Windows 8 Firewall and if it will let you identify the network as Private.  Sounds like it assumes your at a coffee shop,etc where it will protect from man in the middle attacks by limiting ad-hoc networks from attaching to yours.  Disabling the firewall might help as I seem to recall that the Private vs. Public options configures the firewall on how to respond.  Report back if it doesn't help or if your unable to change your network status to Private.  

    Be kind and Mark as Answer if I helped.

    Wednesday, January 02, 2013 7:16 AM
  • Please also try the following suggestions.

    1. Update the wireless network adapter manually.
    2. Go to Network and Sharing Center -> Change adapter settings -> disable all unused connections except wireless connection.
    3. Uninstall your security software temporarily.
    4. Run network adapter troubleshooting from Control Panel.


    Niki Han
    TechNet Community Support

    Thursday, January 03, 2013 5:56 AM
    Moderator

  • Configuration for interface "Wi-Fi"
         DHCP enabled:                         Yes
         IP Address:                           169.254.110.122
         Subnet Prefix:                        169.254.0.0/16 (mask 255.255.0.0)
         InterfaceMetric:                      25
         DNS servers configured through DHCP:  None
         Register with which suffix:           Primary only
         WINS servers configured through DHCP: None

    Note the bogus IP address Win 8 seems to have "retrieved" from the peer, with no DNS and no Gateway. NB, this IP is not one my usual Wi-Fi router serves. What on earth is going on here?


    Looks ok, when a host fails to dynamically acquire an address, it can optionally assign itself a link-local IPv4 address in accordance with RFC 3927

    Look what is wrong first with the DHCP server, is it reachable, is a lease available in range
    • Edited by Arnaud Dovi Thursday, January 03, 2013 7:47 PM
    Thursday, January 03, 2013 7:42 PM
  • Before you speak about major bug in W 8, do deeper analysis. At least with network monitor and inspect logs on "transmitter side".

    Rgds

    Milos


    Well, as I said, I can connect perfectly to the "transmitter side" when I reboot my machine into Windows 7, with no further configuration needed to be able to access the Internet via the transmitter. This points to a problem with the way Windows 8 is attempting to access the ad hoc network. It may not be a bug, but some enhanced security "feature" in Windows 8. Still, something that works fine in Windows 7 no longer works in Windows 8. I think it's worth investigating as an issue with Windows 8.
    • Edited by Peribanu Friday, January 04, 2013 5:36 PM Typos
    Friday, January 04, 2013 5:01 PM
  • Thank you for the helpful suggestions, Chris DeCarlo. You are right that ad hoc networks are identified as public by default in Windows 8, and there are no options to change this. I have turned off the Windows firewall for both public and private networks. The options to change a network from public to private and vice versa are usually accessed (in Win 8) by right-clicking the metro-style networks list, but even with the firewall turned off, there is no option to do so. I *am* asked when I first "connect" to the ad hoc network whether to turn on file sharing or not, and I choose to do so. However, all this seems to do is to enable the sharing options in the "public" network profile. It doesn't mark the connection as private. I read somewhere that by design Windows now treats ad-hoc networks as public. Seems to defeat the purpose of ad-hoc networks (to link up machines so they can see each other without the need of infrastructure).

    • Edited by Peribanu Friday, January 04, 2013 5:37 PM Clarification
    Friday, January 04, 2013 5:08 PM
  • Please also try the following suggestions.

    1. Update the wireless network adapter manually.
    2. Go to Network and Sharing Center -> Change adapter settings -> disable all unused connections except wireless connection.
    3. Uninstall your security software temporarily.
    4. Run network adapter troubleshooting from Control Panel.



    Thank you for your suggestions Niki Han. I have tried these steps. 1. the driver is the latest offered by Intel; 2. I disabled all connections except wireless; 3. I disabled Windows Firewall -- no other security suites running; 4. the network troubleshooter resets my wireless NIC, which then loses the connection to the ad hoc network -- I reconnect, but the problem is not solved. Still says the connection is "limited".
    Friday, January 04, 2013 5:24 PM

  • Looks ok, when a host fails to dynamically acquire an address, it can optionally assign itself a link-local IPv4 address in accordance with RFC...

    Look what is wrong first with the DHCP server, is it reachable, is a lease available in range

    Thanks Arnaud Dovi. It's useful to know this is a link-local address, which is a symptom of failure to acquire an address from the DHCP server. As I said, though, Windows 7 acquires an address perfectly well from the very same server (actually, it's technically a peer, since it's an ad-hoc network). A Symbian phone can also acquire IP and DNS from the same connection. So I don't think the problem is with the ad-hoc access point / "server". The problem is with Windows 8's inability (seemingly) to connect to it. As I said, also, Windows 8 cannot use the access point when the connection is set to static, whereas Windows 7 *can* use the connection with exactly the same static IPs and DNS given to it. Bottom line is, Windows 7 can connect either dynamically (DHCP) or statically, but Windows 8 can do neither.

    It would be very interesting to know if anyone *is* able to connect to an ad-hoc network using Windows 8 and gain Internet connectivity through that connection. NB, the hostednetwork feature of netsh does not count. That is infrastructure mode. It needs to be true ad-hoc for us to know whether Win 8 has removed this ability (or accidentally disabled it).

    Friday, January 04, 2013 5:34 PM
  • I have made a teeny bit of progress in that, by using the PowerShell cmdlet Set-NetConnectionProfile -NetworkCategory Private, I am able to change the ad-hoc network from Public (default for ad-hoc, it seems) to Private. However, the connection is still reported as "Limited", whether I provide IP addresses and DNS to the interface, or set it to DHCP. Additionally, even though I have made and saved a (manual) profile for this connection (using netsh), as soon as I disconnect, the profile "forgets" that it is supposed to be Private, and when I connect again, it is always public. Using the cmdlet, I can ONLY change from public to private when the interface is connected. I can't do it by specifying -InterfaceAlias "Wi-Fi" when the Wi-Fi is disconnected. I get the error "No MSFT_NetConnectionProfile objects found with property 'InterfaceAlias' equal to 'Wi-Fi'".

    I'm still very interested to know whether ANYONE has succeeded in connecting to a true ad-hoc network, and gained TCP/IP connectivity, in Windows 8. Is this simply no longer possible? Since ad-hoc networks are ideal for emergency situations, Egyptian revolutions, etc., it seems bizarre if this functionality has truly been suppressed in Windows 8. Does anyone know the answer to this? Many thanks for your patience.

    Monday, January 07, 2013 6:17 PM
  • Just to say that others are having this problem too. See:

    http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_8-networking/how-to-setup-a-wireless-network-using-my-phone-as/4534b6e6-4148-408c-b358-e26f33dfa11c

    It would still be great to know if any of you gurus have actually managed to connect a Windows 8 machine to a true ad-hoc network (not the hostednetwork virtual AP) and have achieved TCP/IP and Internet connectivity.


    • Edited by Peribanu Sunday, January 20, 2013 5:50 PM Clarification
    Sunday, January 20, 2013 5:48 PM
  • Use This App to Create Or Join Adhoc Network On Windows 8.1 pc

    http://www.sharebeast.com/5ft39mql0ysx

    • Proposed as answer by Aideal Ryder Sunday, December 08, 2013 7:43 AM
    Sunday, December 08, 2013 7:43 AM