Connect WD My Cloud to Cell Phone Hotspot

Okay… let me try to explain what I am doing.

I recently discontinued my expensive internet service from my cable provider because my cell phone service is truly unlimited and using it as a hotspot is now free.

So… I have been testing the hotspot and it works great… my smart tv connects to it, my desktop connects to it, my laptop connects to it, my wireless printer connects to it and I can watch Netflix and be on the internet at the same time without any problems.

However… I have the WD My Cloud that I have all of my DVD collection stored on that I was able to access through my smart tv when I had WIFI but now I cannot.

My tv sees my desktop computer when it is connected to the hotspot but even if I connect the My Cloud to my computer with an Ethernet cable the tv doesn’t see the movies on it.

Is there any way to get the My Cloud to see that hotspot and then be accessible by my television?

I don’t need to access it with my cell phone… just the television.

Generally you would connect a My Cloud to a router or switch which other devices would connect to.

If you are only connecting the My Cloud to a computer then unless you configure that computer to share the My Cloud network connection (to that computer) no other devices will be able to access the My Cloud. The computer the My Cloud is connected to will need TWO network adapters. One for the My Cloud, the for the cellphone hotspot.

If using Windows you would typically setup Internet Connection Sharing on the network adapter connected to the cellphone hotspot device.

https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-internet-connection-sharing-ics-2377419

Windows 10 Tips and Tricks: Connecting to Networks and the Internet: Sharing Your Computer’s Internet Connection

1 Like

Your phone is acting as a WiFi router, using a mobile modem to access the internet.

All your devices are connected to your phone router by WiFi.

Your MyCloud does not have WiFi, so cannot connect to your phone WiFi router.

So, you will need to get a wired/WiFi router (maybe the one supplied by your previous cable ISP?), put it into bridge mode, and use it as a wired to WiFi access point to allow it to connect to your phone WiFi router. That’s if you don’t want to have to have your computer on all the time.

In bridge mode, the router acts merely as an extender to your phone router, providing physical ethernet ports, and your phone router provides the DHCP server. You’ll have to dig out the details of how to configure your router into bridge mode.

1 Like

Currently I tried connecting the My Cloud to the desktop computer via Ethernet cable… the desktop sees the my Cloud and can access all of my movies. The desktop computer connects to my cell phone acting as a hot spot… the TV connects to my cell phone acting as a hot spot… the TV sees my desktop computer but does not see the My Cloud connected to it nor can the TV browse to anything unless it is on the desktops hard drive.

So you are saying that I need a Wi-Fi router to connect to the My Cloud via Ethernet cable and then after configuration it would be seen by the TV?

Currently I tried connecting the My Cloud to the desktop computer via Ethernet cable… the desktop sees the my Cloud and can access all of my movies.

Yes, via the wired ethernet connection. But it’s a private connection between PC and MyCloud, and isn’t part of the local area network provided by the phone WiFi router.

The desktop computer connects to my cell phone acting as a hot spot…

Yes, via WiFi. Check your PC network connection control UI; it will show two connections.

the TV connects to my cell phone acting as a hot spot…

Yes, via WiFi

the TV sees my desktop computer

Yes, via WiFi, through the phone router

but does not see the My Cloud connected to it nor can the TV browse to anything unless it is on the desktops hard drive.

Because the MyCloud isn’t on WiFi, and you haven’t enabled sharing of the PC’s internet; see the link Bennor posted.

So you are saying that I need a Wi-Fi router to connect to the My Cloud via Ethernet cable and then after configuration it would be seen by the TV?

That is one way to allow the MyCloud to be seen by the phone’s WiFi router, yes. The wired/WiFi router essentially becomes part of the router network of your phone, allowing the MyCloud to become part of the local area network provided by your phone WiFi router.

1 Like

As explained above, enable internet connection sharing on the network adapter that is connected to the cellphone hotspot. That should allow traffic to flow between the two network adapters so the TV can access the My Cloud. Obviously to stream the My Cloud to the TV you will have to leave the computer running/on.

Bridging on a windows host is… unpleasant, and breaks easily.

instead, I would suggest getting a dedicated wifi bridge. Walmart sells a number of such devices. Basically, they pick up a wifi signal, then propagate traffic both ways, like a relay. They are completely transparent to networked devices.

Not my intention to plug more WD Merch, but here is a suitable candidate.

You will need a wired device for the initial setup (direct connect over a wired cable to configure the bridge to attach to your hotpot), and after that you can move that wired cable to the MyCloud. After that, it should be able to be seen by your devices/see the internet over the wifi connection.

@ Bennor… I do not understand what you keep saying about the network adapter that is connected to the cell phone hotspot… there is no network adapter… the cell phone has a function called tethering & networks… you turn on the “hotspot” function and set a password, allowed number of connections, & whether or not you want it to timeout.

@ cpt_paranoia… I do know about internet connection sharing and had it enabled as the desktop pc originally was the main computer and was able to browse drives on it from other laptops etc that were connected to the wifi in the house.

Now @ all… I do have a wifi range extender that the My Cloud was connected to but the cell phone doesn’t recognize that just as I suspect that if I connect a wifi router… it is not going to recognize the cell phone internet connection hotspot as it is not physically connected to it. You know… you have internet coming in on the cable connected physically to the router… wifi goes out from the router to any that can connect to your network workgroup. I know how to make all that work but since the cell phone is the internet coming in and the router wifi per-se… no connection to a router.

Still a bit confused how to make a router connect to an already wireless signal.

To OP:

I believe the wi-fi bridge is a good idea, and you likely may not need a router as well. The WD Bridge is a discontinued, closed-out device, but it is a good one (I have one) but getting difficult to find AND at a good price. I found mine new at eBay for $40 and sold by a company there that once bought out a lot of the WD discontinued My Net products.

This is how I use mine to deliver high speed video signal from my MC as a wired signal to my WDTV, and you could use a variation of this. I cannot set up the WDTV as a wired unit although it is only about 15 feet from a router, because it is not practical to connect WDTV to router (too many doorways in the way) So, I have the bridge setup to receive the 5G wireless signal from my router (YOU would receive the phone hotspot signal) The bridge has 4 ethernet wired outputs, and I plug the wired port of the WDTV into one port. (YOU would plug the My Cloud ethernet into this port.) Now you have the MC properly wired into a “wired” signal created by you hotspot. Your TV should see this device as it does other signals and play your video.

You could even use a WD Range Extender in reverse mode by receiving the hotspot wireless signal with it and plugging the MC into the single ethernet port on the range extender.

I am not sure if you would initially need a router to set this all up, because you need to get into the Dashboard of either the bridge or range extender for setup. You would need the user guide for either device found at WD support.

Good luck.

The My Cloud is a network attached storage device (NAS). To access the My Cloud you generally must have the My Cloud connected to a computer, router (wifi), switch or hub using an Ethernet cable. Does your cell phone hotspot have a Ethernet network port? No? Then you will have to connect the My Cloud to something else. Now from your first post you stated the following…

You have indicated you connected your My Cloud to your computer. If that computer has both a Ethernet networking port and a WiFi connection to your cellphone hotspot you can enable Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) on the WiFi connection (that is connected to your cellphone hotspot). Once enabled it will bridge the WiFi connection to the Ethernet network connection the My Cloud is connected to allowing for traffic to pass from the WiFi connection to the My Cloud.

The links I posted above explain what ICS is and how to activate it on Windows.

If you don’t want to use ICS, or your computer doesn’t have two network ports (Ethernet and WiFi), then you will have to find another method of connecting the My Cloud using Ethernet to the cellular hotspot. The most common way would be to use a WiFi Bridge either like the one mentioned above or using a WiFi router that supports being configured as a WiFi Ethernet Bridge.

The bottom line is you have to find a way to connect the My Cloud’s Ethernet networking port to a device that connects to the WiFi cellphone hotspot since the My Cloud DOES NOT have, or support, WiFi itself.

@ Benor… I do have internet connection sharing turned on… I have already stated I know how to do that.

I do not have a Cell Phone Hot Spot with an Ethernet connection… I keep telling you that I have a cell phone… period… period… I am using the cell phone as a hotspot… that means I have a cell phone with cell signal and I turn on tethering which turns on a hot spot. How many times do I have to say there is not Ethernet connection to a cell phone? Do you not get it?

How many times do you have to insult me by referencing your infantile link to the basic of tutorials on internet connection sharing?

Either re-read what I posted or please stop replying… you are in a loop.

You mean the internal, or USB HDDs? Different situation entirely; they are resources local to the PC. An ethernet-connected NAS is not. Unless you map its shares into the file system.

You need to get your PC to connect its WiFi to its wired ethernet, if you want to access the NAS via the PC.

It’s possible that your phone hotspot does not support subordinate router connections, and only allows direct, point-to-point connections between device and phone.

The point about bridge mode wired/wifi routers is that they can connect to the main router via wifi; they don’t need to be wired. It doesn’t matter how the internet gets to the router; via fibre, by ADSL, or by a 4G mobile data signal. Once it’s got to the router, the router can distribute it via wired connection, or, wifi, or both. Your phone is using just wifi. But the bearer is immaterial; it’s the logical connection that is important. Provided your bridge mode router can connect logically to your phone router (by wifi), and connect logically to your MyCloud (by wired ethernet), then the bridge mode router just becomes a physical extension of the phone router. Provided the phone router supports bridged extensions…

Yes; we got it immediately. Your phone is a wifi router/modem. This is the bit you do not appear to get. You are in a loop.

A phone ‘hotspot’ is a wifi router/modem. It uses its wifi as a router to connect nearby IP devices, and uses its 4G data modem to access the internet. Therefore, if you want to connect a wired device to it, you need a wired to wifi interface, or bridge. Whether this is a dedicated bridge, or a wired/wifi router configured in bridge mode is up to you. The MyCloud connects to the wired port of this bridge. The phone wifi router connects to the wifi side of this bridge. The bridge routes traffic between wired and wifi ports, just like it would between two wired ports, or two wifi ports.

Just curious guys: Is a phone both a router/modem, or just a modem (with wi-fi)?

If it is able to connect one local device to another (as reported: “the TV sees my desktop computer”), then it must be providing a router function, and not merely an internet access point.

But it’s a good question… I think it’s time for the OP to start looking at the exact capabilities of their phone’s hotspot.

1 Like

you know everyone (especially Benor) I was pretty rude and I apologize. I believe he was thinking that I had a hotspot from my cell provider.

Anyway I am sorry for that.

I was actually not stuck in a loop… I was trying to explain what I had but I guess I failed.

However… I was able to power up my range extender that I mentioned earlier that I had…go to my desktop pc and tell it to connect to it instead of my cell phone… then I was able to log into the configuration page and have it search for wireless connections and it was finally able to find the hotspot connection from my cell phone.

So… now I have everything only connecting to my range extender and the range extender connecting to my cell phone hot spot.

Now the TV sees the My Cloud just as before and all is well.

I read everything everyone said and was able to see what needed to be done with all of your help and I think you all so very much.

1 Like

It doesn’t really matter if its a stand alone hotspot from a cellular provider or a cellphone configured as a hotspot, the issue (and solution) are generally the same. An intermediary device with an Ethernet networking port (in your case a range extender) must generally be used, once properly configured, to access the hotspot. If you didn’t have your range extender you could have used a computer (which you initially indicated in your first post) if that computer had both an Ethernet networking port and a WiFi network port.

In the end you figured out how to get it working. And that’s what matters after the miscommunications/misunderstandings. :slight_smile:

Great, nice to know the RE did the trick and you did not need a router or bridge to get the job done (although the RE is acting like a single port bridge.) If you needed (or may need, additional ports) you would need to use a bridge as they have more ports.

For anyone attempting the same thing here is the instructions:

Turn on “Tethering” or “Hotspot” on your cell phone and configure it to allow as many devices to connect as you see fit. Don’t forget to put a password… you don’t want to leave it open. Some cell service providers require a monthly charge to allow computers to use this method (tablets and other cell phones, ipods etc usually do not cost to connect)… mine is free.

Turn on your WiFi range extender and wait for all the lights to go green (or whatever color they are supposed to be).

Plug the Ethernet cable from your range extender to your My Cloud. (of course it needs to be powered up). Wait for the light on your My Cloud to turn blue.

Turn on your laptop and have it discover your WiFi range extender and then log into the range extender configuration page (this will be different for all of them so no instructions for that). In the configuration page of your range extender have it discover wireless signals and your “Hotspot” should show up in the list. now set your range extender to connect automatically to your “Hotspot” every time.

Now that your range extender is the only thing connecting to your “Hotspot” you can then have your laptops, tablets, smart tv, wireless printers etc. connect to your range extender automatically from then on.

At this point your smart tv, laptops ect. should be able to see your My Cloud device. VIOLA! Now every time you turn on your “tethering” or “hotspot” your range extender should see the signal and connect.

This worked for me.

Can you not connect your WiFi devices directly to the mobile hotspot? I don’t see the need to get them to connect to the extender, which I would use just to provide the wired to WiFi interface for the MyCloud.

Since the extender will have a finite link rate, putting all traffic through it might prove to be a bottleneck. The phone hotspot router itself might prove to be a bottleneck, mind…