Add, edit, or remove wireless network connections on a client computer
Updated: January 21, 2005
Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2
To add, edit, or remove wireless network connections on a client computer
Right-click the wireless network connection icon in the notification area, and then click View Available Wireless Networks. For more information, see Notes.
To add, modify, change the preferred order of, or remove wireless networks, under Related Tasks, click Change the order of preferred networks, and on the Wireless Networks tab, do any of the following:
To Do this
Remove a preferred wireless network
Under Preferred networks, click the wireless network that you want to remove from the list, and then click Remove.
Add a new wireless network
Select the Use Windows to configure my network settings check box. Under Preferred networks, click Add.
Automatically connect to available networks that do not appear in the Preferred networks list
Under Preferred networks, click Advanced, and then select the Automatically connect to non-preferred networks check box.
Modify settings for an existing wireless network
Select the Use Windows to configure my network settings check box. Under Preferred networks, click the wireless network connection that you want to modify, and then click Properties.
Change the order in which connection attempts to preferred networks are made
Under Preferred networks, click the wireless network that you want to move to a new position in the list, and then click Move up or Move down until the wireless network is at the desired position.
If you are adding or modifying a wireless network, click the Association tab, configure wireless network settings as needed, and then click OK. For more information, see Related Topics.
To define 802.1X authentication for the wireless network connection, click the Authentication tab, configure the settings as needed, and then click OK. For more information, see Related Topics.
On the Wireless networks tab, under Available networks, click on View Wireless Networks, and then do any of the following:
To Do this
Update the list of available wireless networks that are within range of your computer
Under Network Tasks, click Refresh network list.
Connect to a wireless network after configuring network settings on the Wireless Networks tab
Under Choose a wireless network, click the network to which you want to connect, and then click Connect.
If a network does not broadcast its network name, it does not appear under Choose a wireless network. To connect to an access point (infrastructure) network that you know is available but that does not appear under Available network, follow the instructions in the previous table for adding a new wireless network.
It is highly recommended that you use 802.1X authentication whenever you connect to an 802.11 wireless network. 802.1X is an IEEE standard that enhances security and deployment by providing support for centralized user identification, authentication, dynamic key management, and accounting. For more information, see Related Topics.
For enhanced security, in Windows XP Service Pack 1 and in the Windows Server 2003 family, 802.1X authentication is available only for access point (infrastructure) networks that require the use of a network key (WEP). WEP provides data confidentiality by encrypting the data that is sent between wireless clients and wireless access points. For additional information about security for wireless networks, see Related Topics.
If you attempt to connect to a computer-to-computer network or an access point network that does not require the use of a network key, the settings in the Authentication tab are not available, and you cannot configure 802.1X authentication for the connection.
Performing this task does not require you to have administrative credentials. Therefore, as a security best practice, consider performing this task as a user without administrative credentials.
When an error is detected that might limit or prevent a connection to a wireless network, the wireless warning icon is displayed in the notification area.
To open Network Connections, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Network Connections.
The Wireless Networks tab appears only if you are using a wireless network adapter that supports the Wireless Configuration service. If you are unsure whether your wireless network adapter supports the Wireless Configuration service, contact the wireless network adapter manufacturer. For more information about automatic wireless network configuration, see Related Topics.
If you are unable to connect to an existing wireless network, and the name of the network that you want to connect to appears under the Preferred networks list, click the network, and then click Properties. In Wireless Network Properties, review the settings to ensure that they are correct.
If the Preferred networks list includes both access point (infrastructure) and computer-to-computer (ad hoc) networks, you cannot move a computer-to-computer network to a position in the list that is higher than the position of an access point network. To connect to a computer-to-computer (ad hoc) network when both computer-to-computer and access point (infrastructure) networks are within range of your computer, click Advanced, and then click Computer-to-computer (ad hoc) networks only.
Information about functional differences
Your server might function differently based on the version and edition of the operating system that is installed, your account permissions, and your menu settings. For more information, see Viewing Help on the Web.
ConceptsShow a network connection icon in the notification area
Define 802.1X authentication for wireless networks on a client computer
Security information for wireless networks
Configuring wireless network settings on client computers
Wireless networking overview
Understanding 802.1X authentication for wireless networks
Connect to an available wireless network