Hi and thanks for the reply...
I have been trying to get this scenario to work....in this discussion here, but I think it's not really going in the right direction...
I am working only with a Mac OSX laptop, Raspberry Pi3B+ and stretch only OS configuration.
=================================== I been trying to get this work with no Joy ==============================
To be clear: Say you have an Ethernet network of Raspberry Pi 3B+(s) with NO other equipment connected by Ethernet.
(Pi 1 Or RSPi Server = 1 , ethernet connected to RSPi Clients = 3) , (Laptop client =1 , not ethernet connected)
Now Network all the RSPi machines together using a usb powered Ethernet hub. (not the laptop)
Add to the RSPi (server) Wifi Hotspot functionailty.
Now disable all client wifi connectivity except for the RSPi (server) - that needs to stay on because it provides the WifiHotspot.
Now from your Laptop (Mac Osx) connect to the WIFI Hotspot ( RSPi - server ).
Now that your LAPTOP is connected via Wifi Hotspot, Launch your (network browser) i.e Finder --> GO -->Connect To Server (smb://192.168.5.7/) and connect to an Ethernet Lan based RSPi i.e any of the 3 clients) and browse it's/their shared folders etc...
The result is that I have used my WIFI hotspot, as a way to browse my local LAN without connecting directly to any RSPi-client but just through the bridge provided by my hotspot on the RSPi (server).
Scenario: Why would anyone want this: In my case, I am building portable classrooms for young/vunerable people... They need to be protected from the outside world's distractions(Facebook, youtube etc) and inappropriate content. All the skills required like connecting to a web site, downloading, uploading, build websites(wordpress), coding etc is all simulated using Raspberry Pi 3B+ machines and Raspbian pre-loaded software.
The Wifi HotSpot part, is to demonstrate how to work with Wifi hotspots and learn the benefits/vulnerabilities that come with it.
Is this possible, or am I missing the point...i.e that the nature of Wifi Hotspot AccessPoints is that you cannot bridge from the Wifi to the LAN clients and use their files and folders?
If it is possible Could Someone/Anyone please explain what code should I write and which files would I put the code into?