How-To Geek

Easily Backup & Import Your Wireless Network Settings in Windows 7

This guest article was written by Ciprian from 7 Tutorials, an excellent blog covering how to use Windows 7.

One of the biggest annoyances when setting up wireless networks is remembering the security key and typing it correctly so that you can connect all laptops and netbooks to it. Windows 7 makes it easy to export your wireless settings from one machine to another.

The backup of the wireless networks settings can be easily done from Windows 7, and the settings can be saved to a USB stick, and then the settings can be imported on laptops & netbooks running Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7.

How to Save Your Wireless Network Settings

First, open the Network and Sharing Center. You can do this by clicking on the wireless network symbol from the taskbar and clicking on ‘Open Network and Sharing Center’. An alternative would be to go to Control Panel -> Network and Internet -> Network and Sharing Center.


On the left side of the Network and Sharing Center window, click on the ‘Manage wireless networks’ link.


In the Manage Wireless Networks window you will see a list with all wireless networks to which you have connected in the past. Double click on the one which interests you.


Now you will see a window with all its properties. In order to save them on a flash drive, click on the bottom link which says ‘Copy this network profile to a USD flash drive’.


The Copy Network Settings wizard will now start. Insert the USB flash drive, wait until it is detected and the Next button is no longer gray.


The copying process will take only a few seconds. When done, click on Close.


If you will look on your USB flash drive you will see a setupSNK.exe file and a SMRTNTKY folder. Make sure you don’t delete them from the memory stick.


How to Import Your Wireless Network Settings

First, plug in the USB flash drive in the laptop where you want to import the settings and run the setupSNK.exe file. When the Wireless Network Setup Wizard launches, click on Yes.


The settings will be imported in seconds and when receiving the notification below, click on OK and start using the wireless network.


This procedure is very helpful for both public and hidden wireless networks. Instead of typing long authentication keys, it is easier to plug in an USB memory stick and run a setup file. If you have other useful tricks like this one, don’t hesitate to share them using the comments form below.

Note: For more Windows 7 tips and guides from our good friend Ciprian, be sure and check out his 7 Tutorials blog.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 09/15/09

Comments (21)

  1. nope

    Couple of notes:

    * the wireless password is in plain-text on the USB key

    * With the latest No Autorun updates for Windows XP and Vista (see ) the dialog box on how to install the settings to another computer changes. Although I believe you are correct in stating just find the EXE on the USB drive and execute it.

  2. HugoHilter

    That´s a good idea for 7! In Vista i have always problems with WLAN – therefore i use til 7 cable-connection…

  3. silviu

    super tare Cip

  4. Anonymous

    Does not work on all types of wireless networks. From what I have seen, it does not work on WPA2-Enterprise networks. Grrr.

  5. Paul

    Of course it doesn’t work on WPA2-Enterprise, you don’t have access to the key on WPA2-Enterprise networks, you only have access to it on WPA2-Personal networks. The RADIUS server controls access to the key on WPA2-Enterprise. This is by definition why WPA2-Enterprise is even more secure than WPA2-Personal.

  6. Howard

    Doesn’t recognize my flash drive once plugged in even tho explorer does

  7. Mark

    Anyone know how to backup these profiles without using a USB key?

  8. Marty

    How do you import a .P10 from xp to windows 7

  9. d b

    Thank you so much. I come to visit my family in Atlanta often and my sister forgot her password. I could connect with windows 7 by the router and this made it possible for me to connect my son who didnt have the router option. Thank you so much!!!!!

  10. apekatt

    The “copy this and that” link doesn’t appear, even though I’m following your instructions.

  11. SB

    How do you import a .P10 from xp to windows 7?

  12. Inspector

    I have a wireless router with a desktop, three laptops running. To ensure connectivity for all systems would I copy my router settings or the settings from one of the computers that is currently able to connect, and then use those setting for all other systems. I also have a Black Armour Server 110, can the same process be used to have all of the above computers connect to the server for saving files in one location.



  13. bell

    this save all password in usb or just one

  14. julea

    dont forget you can sync your cell phones[some]and sons zunes are both wireless.the newer one 16 gb one can get internet on it for free too sell 2wire modem.and with that can hook up desktops.laptops.cells.and zunes.its great.

  15. Xantes

    Should you INDEED need backing-up your Wireless settings here is something that really works:
    Don’t waste your time with monetized posts!

  16. Xantes

    Should you INDEED need backing-up your Wireless settings here is something that really works:
    Don’t waste your time with monetized posts!!!

  17. Xantes

    Should you INDEED need backing-up your Wireless settings here is something that really works:
    Don’t waste your time with monetized posts!!!!

  18. neil

    There is no option to copy settings to USB on my WNA properties screen!
    Anyone any suggestions? Vista Home Basic & IE7, if that’s relevant.

  19. Lee


  20. JIm

    Is there a way to backup all of my wireless networks with one command?

  21. DonE

    There is a simple way to import XP wireless profiles that use the Intel ProSet into the new Windows 7 machine assuming that you can network the two computers. On Widows XP machine, export wireless profile on the Intel ProSet Wireless from the “Manage Profiles Tab” to a known location. On Windows 7, open the Network Sharing Center. On the lower left, there is a link “Intel Proset/Wireless Tools”. Click on it and a dialog box opens with an “Import Profile” tab. When you click on that, you can navigate to the XP machine on you network where the profiles, xxx.p10 are stored. Simple, easy.

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