How to Export Import Wireless Profiles – Windows

This method is pretty useful if you have a large number of sites to support, or more than one SSID on your wireless network using passwords that are difficult to remember – this will show you how to export import wireless profiles in Windows.

Be aware, that to allow the import process to work effectively, you will need be storing your wireless password in plain text. Ensure area in which you store these files is encrypted/secure in such a way that only those who should know the key can access the files.

  1. Open command prompt as an administrator.
  2. List the available wireless network profiles with the following command:
    netsh wlan show profiles
  3. Now, note the SSID in the list that you want to export, ready to be imported at a later stage – then run the following command:
    netsh wlan export profile %SSIDName% folder=c:\temp

    Remeber to change the %SSIDName% with the SSID of the network you need from the list previously. You can also change the location at the end of the command – this dictates where the exported xml will save to.

  4. Now, go to the newly created xml, and open in your preferred editor. As default, right click and edit will open in Notepad and this should be sufficient.
    • Look for:
      <protected>true</protected>

      and change it to

      <protected>false</protected>
    • Now look for:
      <keyMaterial> LARGE STRING OF TEXT </keyMaterial>

      This is your wireless key, in an encrypted format. If we were to import it like this onto a different machine, then the wireless key would still need to be typed.

    • Replace the large string of text with your wireless key and save the xml file.
  5. Finally, we’re ready to import the wireless onto the other machines with the following command (again in an elevated command prompt):
    netsh wlan add profile filename="path-to-xml\filename.xml" user=all

    Replace “path-to-xml\filename.xml” with the complete path to the xml created earlier. If you have multiple PCs to add this to, you can save the above command as a .bat file and simply run that on each machine.

 

If you have a large network running group policy, you can add the import batch file as a startup script to quickly and easily deploy this over a network.

That’s how to easily¬†export import wireless profiles in Windows!

 

Click here to download the xml template and batch file to edit and skip the export section if you don’t yet have a device on the network

 

Read more about the netsh command on Technet by clicking here.

 

As above – be aware when storing the xml files. If you are carrying them around externally, ensure they’re stored on an encrypted device, or internally in a folder that has the correct security permissions set.

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