Internet Connection Sharing

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What Does Internet Connection Sharing Mean?

Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) is a Microsoft Operating System (OS) service that enables sharing an Internet connection for one or more users and computers through a dialup modem or local area network (LAN).


ICS facilitates Internet access between multiple computers in a single location. It is helpful in office or home environments where more than one computer is configured for Internet use via one Internet service provider (ISP) line.

Techopedia Explains Internet Connection Sharing

On the backend, ICS has one phone or broadband Internet line to enable Web browsing at equal data speeds. For example, one user may send emails, while another download music files.

The following are key ICS network features:

  • Multiple computers and users have total Internet access.
  • Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) and DNS are Microsoft Windows tools used to resolve Internet Protocol (IP) addressing. DHCP-Allocator assigns gateway addresses, IP addresses, and other network services. DNS-Proxy resolves names on behalf of its clients and forwards requests to corresponding servers.
  • All types of users, even those with different Windows versions, may use the Internet.
  • Computers include extra and automatically configured support for games and open Java-based Web graphics.
  • Auto Dial provides automatic dial connection.
  • Users may access external or corporate email services, unlike other LAN environments.
  • It provides video conferencing, audio chat, Web meetings, and more.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.