Fixing Windows Phone 8 to Windows 8 Tethering Issue

I have recently decided to jump over to the Windows Phone side, having been on Android and even developing a couple of apps on Android (I still like the platform though!).

I went for the very popular Nokia Lumia 920 (sure it is bulky compared to the HTC 8x, but it has a more solid build) and to be honest I’m not missing much compared to Android (email + WhatsApp + GPS navigation are the apps I use the most).

One of the great things about smartphones these days is the ability to tether (for those unfamiliar with the term: share your phone’s data with other devices over WiFi or sometimes even USB). I tried to tether my Windows Phone 8 to my Windows 8 Pro laptop and unfortunately I kept getting “Limited Access”. I tried just about everything from switching DNS to reinstalling drivers and I can’t remember what else.

I was frustrated, I thought my phone was broken somehow. A search online did not help much since people were either using phones with providers that “crippled” the tethering feature or had it removed completely. I bought my phone from the Nokia dealer in Bahrain (Intercol) and know for a fact that is supposed to be unlocked.

Then it hit me, in my frustration I never tried tethering to my Windows 7 desktop, my Android phone or even my PS Vita. Surprisingly they had no problem accessing the Internet, something was wrong with Windows 8. I attempted to tether to my Windows 8 work laptop and bam, limited access… Windows 8 was definitely the culprit.

After days of trying I finally found the solution, although I can’t explain the reason why it works, it just works! What you need to do in Windows 8 is enable FIPS (Federal Information Processing Standards), just follow these steps:

1. Right click on your tethered WiFi connection (which is currently showing “Limited Access”) and open up “View connection properties”.


2. Go to the “Security” tab and click on “Advanced Settings”.

3. Tick the “Enable FIPS” box (its the only box there). Hit the OKs.


4. If the connection still shows “Limited Access” just disconnect and reconnect. It should have Internet access now.

Hope this clears your tethering frustrations :-P!

19 thoughts on “Fixing Windows Phone 8 to Windows 8 Tethering Issue”

  1. How’s the Nokia Lumia’s battery life compared to your previous phone? How about notifications for messages and whatnot, are they fast or are they delayed?

  2. Hello Mohamed,

    The battery life is slightly better than my previous phone (Galaxy SL, running Jellybean). By the end of the day my battery is at around 35-40% with a few short calls, WhatsApp here and there, some texts, push email, running on 3G in an area with low 3G coverage.

    I get push email instantly, WhatsApp seems to be delayed a bit (5 minutes sometimes)

    Overall I am happy with the phone. After all it is a smart phone, can’t complain about the battery draining 😛

  3. I’m looking to get a new Nokia Win8 with Verizon, but need WIFI tethering. I see you fix for Win8 conenctions, but what are you using on the phone to turn on the WIFI routing?

    Verizon charges for this, and I do not see any other programs available for Win8 phones for WIFI routing (PDAnet, Walking Hotspot, etc.)

  4. Hello Randy,

    Fortunately I have the unlocked version of the Lumia 920, so the tethering option is there. I’m not sure you will find any app that will create a hotspot, WP8 is still locked down 🙁

  5. Thanks! I couldn’t tether my Windows 8 to my Android phone either (even though I could tether to any other version of Windows).
    This fix worked for me!

    Thanks a million!

  6. This worked for my 920. I also tried everything except that little option, but in vain. Thanks for this.

  7. thanks thanks thanks, i been stuck in hospital for 3 days had couldn’t connect. thanks for the post.

  8. OMG thank you so much!!! i have been searching for a fix for this for a long time… I can now use my LTE connection on my laptop thanks!!

  9. Thanks a lot, it really works. I am happy that I found your page only 30 minutes after I run into this problem.

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