I am trying to connect my iPad (running 4.3.3) with my Macbook (running Lion) in my college dorm room using my college's Wifi. It uses 802.1X Authentication. I can't ping my iPad from my Macbook. Is there any way I can make Bonjour or AirPlay work? Is there a tool that proxies or routes the Bonjour service somehow?

  • 1
    What OS version is each piece of hardware running?
    – Daniel
    Nov 2, 2011 at 23:38
  • Are you sure you're on the same LAN (Local Area Network)?
    – daviesgeek
    Nov 3, 2011 at 6:00
  • @nambrot: can you provide some additional information (see comments above)? Pinging, 802.1X and Bonjour are quite different things anyway.
    – nohillside
    Nov 3, 2011 at 7:00
  • OSX Lion and iOS 4.3.3.
    – nambrot
    Nov 3, 2011 at 15:37
  • 1
    Both are connected to the same Wifi, however the network is unicast, so devices cannot ping each other. Hence, Bonjour cannot advertise its services with multicast
    – nambrot
    Nov 3, 2011 at 15:39

4 Answers 4


If all else fails you can create a wireless LAN directly on your Mac and connect your iPad to this WLAN. TUAW has some good instructions on how to do this. To start pick the appropriate option in the Airport/Wi-Fi menu (picture shamelessly taken from the linked TUAW article):

enter image description here

The rest is pretty self-explaining.

  • I know how to do an ad hoc network, but I really don't want to do that for every time I want to use airplay
    – nambrot
    Nov 3, 2011 at 15:35

if you have an ethernet port in your dorm, what about using an Airport Express to connect to your college's LAN network and use it as a wireless router?

  • We are not allowed to have routes in our dorm
    – nambrot
    Nov 3, 2011 at 15:36

It seems you have enough information to surmise the end at this point. If it's unicast, then there's clearly some limiting going on from inside the network. If routers are not allowed (I fail to see how they'd be able to tell), then you're out of luck; It's ad hoc or nothing.

  • so is there not a way to proxy bonjour? or VPN?
    – nambrot
    Nov 4, 2011 at 14:38
  • If you do get a router, make sure you turn off the default setting so that it does not broadcast. That way, the network SSIS will not show up on other people's devices.
    – Raj More
    Nov 5, 2011 at 9:56
  • @RajMore The setting is specifically to not broadcast the SSID. Not broadcasting at all would disable Wi-Fi and hence remove the AirPlay capability. Nov 5, 2011 at 17:49
  • @nambrot Your question seems to be asking if it's possible to create a sort of loopback connection via localized proxy/VPN, in which case creating the ad hoc network is a simpler method to accomplish the same thing. Nov 5, 2011 at 17:50
  • But wouldnt in that case, my macbook not be able to be connected to the Internet? Hence, Internet usage and Airplay would be mutually exclusive with an ad hoc network, whereas using a VPN would be fine, right?
    – nambrot
    Nov 6, 2011 at 5:49

Nambrot: What David said is exactly right. The college network is also almost certainly not able to detect if you're using a router, and routers are probably only not permitted in dorms in the sense that they make you potentially vulnerable to network breaches, packet sniffing, or incorrect subnets. If your college network doesn't permit static, externally visible IP addresses, and also (naturally) doesn't work with Bonjour, I think you're out of luck. I'm basing this strictly off of my own IT experience working at my university though, so YMMV.

  • Well i got a warning for using my old router, so although I thought the same, im not gonna try again. it seems VPN is the only alternative
    – nambrot
    Nov 6, 2011 at 20:20
  • 1
    I would disagree and say most network admins will know easily that you have a router due to the NAT traffic as well as monitoring unknown SSID. They may not take action on one that looks harmless, but rather than get banned for breaking the rules it might be better to apply for an exception and ask what you can do to ensure your router doesn't cause issues to the rest of the staff / consumers of the college network.
    – bmike
    Nov 7, 2011 at 18:28

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