Connect with us

How-To

How to find saved WiFi passwords in Windows 11

If you’ve forgotten your WiFi password, you have options.

windows 11 logo
Image: Microsoft

If you’ve forgotten your WiFi password but still have a Windows 11 device that has connected to the network, you can recover the information.

We all know that you should never write down your login credentials, but, fortunately, Windows writes them down for you. Why should you bother committing anything to memory when computers never forget?

Whether you need to locate one or multiple misremembered WiFi passwords, Windows has several built-in solutions. That’s right. You won’t even need any additional software.

Let’s discuss how you can find all of your saved WiFi passwords in Windows 11.

View saved WiFi passwords in Windows Settings

The simplest way to view your saved WiFi passwords is through Windows 10 or Windows 11 Settings app. By taking this route, you avoid entering command lines and performing other tedious tasks.

Here’s how to view saved WiFi passwords in your Windows 10 or 11 Settings:

  1. Launch Windows Settingsscreenshot of windows 11 desktop showing the settings app on the start menu

  2. Go to Network & internet > Advanced network settingsscreenshot of windows 11 network settings

  3. Click More network adapter options under Related settings screenshot of windows 11 network settings

  4. Double-click Wi-Fi to open the status windowscreenshot of windows network connections

  5. Click Wireless Propertiesscreenshot of windows wifi connection

  6. Select the Security tabscreenshot of windows 11 wifi setting

  7. Check the Show characters box to reveal your WiFi passwordscreenshot of windows wifi setting with password shown

READ MORE: How to change your username in Windows 11

Now you know where to find the password for your currently connected WiFi network. Additionally, this works in both Windows 10 and Windows 11.

View saved WiFi passwords using Windows Command Prompt

If you’re a command line enthusiast or need to view the passwords for multiple WiFi networks, using the Windows Command Prompt may be ideal.

While this method is more complex than stumbling through the settings, you can also perform advanced actions when necessary. The procedures for viewing single and multiple passwords vary slightly.

Show WiFi password for a single profile

Here’s how to view a specific WiFi password using Windows Command Prompt:

  1. Search for Command Prompt from the search icon on your taskbar
screenshot of windows 11 showing a search for the term "command prompt"
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator, then confirm with the pop-up
screenshot of windows 11 showing the run as administrator menu option to run command prompt
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Type or paste netsh wlan show profile and press Enter
windows command prompt
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Note the WiFi network profile you want to view
windows command prompt showing all of the wifi networks with saved passwords on my pc
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Type or paste netsh wlan show profile name=“name” key=clear, replacing “name” with the correct network name and press Enter. For example, netsh wlan show profile name=Zyxel-7FA0 key=clear
windows command prompt showing the command to see the wifi password for a selected network
Image: KnowTechie
  1. View your WiFi password beside Key Content under Security settings
windows command prompt showing the wifi password for the selected network
Image: KnowTechie

Now you know how to check the WiFi password for one of your saved networks. What if you want to see every WiFi password on your PC? We’ll show you.

Show WiFi password for multiple profiles

If you want to view the WiFi passwords for multiple wireless networks, you can use a slightly different command to export each profile.

You will, however, need to run Command Prompt in administrator mode before beginning. Here’s how to view all saved WiFi passwords using Windows 11’s Command Prompt:

  1. Run Command Prompt as an administrator by right-clicking the app and selecting Run as administrator
screenshot of windows 11 showing the run as administrator menu option to run command prompt
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Type or paste netsh wlan export profile folder=c:\ key=clear and press Enter. You can alter the folder location, if necessary, but it must be an existing folder on your computer.
command line showing a command string
Image: KnowTechie
  1. You’ll see confirmation of each WiFi profile being saved successfully
command prompt window showing successful wifi profile exports
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Go to the specified folder, locate the profile you want to view. Note that they’ll be in the .XML file format
screenshot of windows folder
Image: KnowTechie
  1. Open with WordPad or another appropriate app
screenshot of windows folder showing xml file being opened in wordpad
Image: KnowTechie
  1. View the WiFi password in the keyMaterial line
screenshot of xml file open in wordpad
Image: KnowTechie

Now you should know how to use the command line to export all your WiFi profiles. You also know how to find the passwords from the files it exports.

Your computer remembers more than you

Modern technology has removed the need for us to remember anything. Evidently, Windows recalls all the essential information, including your WiFi password, so you can avoid the burden of maintaining memories.

As they say, an empty mind is a happy mind. But is that even a real saying? I can’t remember. Perhaps Windows knows.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

Editors’ Recommendations:

Matt is an Australian freelance writer with a degree in creative and critical writing. Prior to commencing his studies, he worked in tech support and gained valuable insights into technology and its users. His true passion is telling stories, and he hopes to one day write a novel worthy of publication.

Comments

More in How-To