I want to connect my Xbox to the hotel network. I am using my laptop to connect the xbox to the network. At this point I have 2 options - to bridge or to use ICS. Which is better? I have tried both and I see no real difference (other than having to use a 3rd device that has a webbrowser and steal it's MAC address for the Xbox when bridging)

A possibly related problem I have is that I keep getting disconnected from Live, but I suspect that to be an actual network problem rather than a connection issue.

  • I'm not sure it's unrelated. I've tried bridging before and on some occasions have been unable to maintain a continuous connection. That seemed to vary by hotel, though. Jun 15, 2011 at 0:09
  • bridging seems to be worse than ICS
    – Jim B
    Jun 15, 2011 at 3:13

1 Answer 1


Depending on the hotel set up (I used to work for a company that did this exact kind of thing), you may or may not need to have your Xbox passed through the connection so you don't get billed twice (unless it's already free).

There is no difference, but if you call the help desk, they may put through your xbox directly (if you can provide them the MAC address) we used to do it since they already paid for the connection, we just look up the IP assigned to the MAC and then put it through for the same amount of time as your room time is left.

Having the xbox connected directly to the connection means one less hop when it's communicating to the outside world. While this extra hop is usually not a big thing, it's one extra step you don't need if you can connect directly to the Xbox itself.

As far as the disconnect issue, it is more likely a network issue (i.e., not enough bandwidth, bad connection in the room, etc.).

  • I don't have a wireless transever, and there are no wired ports in the room. I was hoping bridging would solve the extra hop and potential double natting problem
    – Jim B
    Jun 15, 2011 at 3:15
  • Ohhhhh, they only have wireless at the hotel? My bad, I assumed it was a wired connection. In that case there is no difference between bridging or using the ICS. Personally though, I'd go with ICS.
    – Sorean
    Jun 15, 2011 at 5:12
  • Doesn't ICS add an extra layer of routing?
    – Jim B
    Jun 15, 2011 at 23:37
  • Technically, both bridging and ICS have the computer handling your network traffic so that layer exists anyway. ICS was designed to handle a situation like this though. It turns the computer into a more intelligent gateway for the connection. Bridging is 'dumber' than using ICS, but gets the job done just the same. Regardless the data hops are going to be Xbox -> Computer -> Hotel Network, as far as what your Xbox is seeing.
    – Sorean
    Jun 15, 2011 at 23:51
  • I don't think ICS and bridging work th same I certianly get different IPs when bridging vs using ICS so clearly there is a routing layer involved with ICS that doesn't exist with bridging.
    – Jim B
    Jun 15, 2011 at 23:54

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