How to quickly retrieve a forgotten Wi-Fi password using your Windows PC

I receive dozens of questions every week from readers of the “Tech Q&A” section of this blog, and one of the questions I get fairly often is “How do I retrieve a forgotten Wi-Fi password?”.

It’s very easy to forget your Wi-Fi password if your devices store it and log you into the network automatically.

Some people go months or even years without typing in their password, only to discover they can no longer remember it when it comes time to connect a new computer or mobile device to the network.

If you have forgotten the password to your own Wi-Fi network, you can retrieve it quite easily from any PC that’s running either Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 as long as it’s currently logged into the network. Here’s how: 

1 – Press the Windows+S key combination to open a “Search” box.

2 – Type the word control into the search box and select Control Panel from the drop-down menu.

3 – Click Network and Internet.

4 – Click Network and Sharing Center.

5 – In the “View your active networks” section, click on the name of the active wireless network connection.

6 – Click Wireless Properties.

7 – Select the Security tab.

8 – Click the box labeled “Show characters” and the password for your wireless network will appear in the “Network security key” field.

That’s all there is to it. Now that you have retrieved your Wi-Fi password, either memorize it or write it down and store it in a lock box or some other secure place so you’ll have it on hand the next time you need it (and you almost certainly will need it again in the future).

Bonus tip #1: Click here for information about Windows 10 for Dummies, and outstanding book for learning the ins-and-outs of Windows 10.

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