The Advantages of Ad Hoc Networks

by James T Wood
Wireless network adapters make it possible to create and join an ad hoc network.

Wireless network adapters make it possible to create and join an ad hoc network.

Ad hoc networks are wireless connections between two or more computers and/or wireless devices (such as a Wi-Fi enabled smart phone or tablet computer). A typical wireless network is based on a wireless router or access point that connects to the wired network and/or Internet. An ad hoc network bypasses the need for a router by connecting the computers directly to each other using their wireless network adapters.

Router Free

Connecting to files on other computers and/or the Internet without the need for a wireless router is the main advantage of using an ad hoc network. Because of this, running an ad hoc network can be more affordable than a traditional network---you don't have the added cost of a router. However, if you only have one computer an ad hoc network won't be possible.

Mobility

Ad hoc networks can be created on the fly in nearly any situation where there are multiple wireless devices. For example: emergency situations in remote locations make a traditional network nearly impossible, but "The medical team can utilize 802.11 radio NICs in their laptops and PDAs and enable broadband wireless data communications as soon as they arrive on the scene."

Speed

Creating an ad hoc network from scratch requires a few settings changes and no additional hardware or software. If you need to connect multiple computers quickly and easily, then an ad hoc network is an ideal solution.

About the Author

James T Wood is a teacher, blogger and author. Since 2009 he has published two books and numerous articles, both online and in print. His work experience has spanned the computer world, from sales and support to training and repair. He is also an accomplished public speaker and PowerPoint presenter.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera wifi access image by Jerome Dancette from Fotolia.com