How to Find a Wi-Fi Password on Your PC or Mac

Use any computer connected to the network to find the Wi-Fi password

Young woman working on laptop in balcony

Oscar Wong/Getty Images

Forgetting your Wi-Fi password is a hindrance, but there's no need to panic. If you have a PC or Mac already connected to your wireless network, you can retrieve the forgotten password.

Find Your Wi-Fi Password With Windows 10

If you're using a Windows PC, it doesn't take much to find your lost Wi-Fi password. Here's how to retrieve the password for your Wi-Fi network.

  1. Select your computer's Start Menu.

  2. Select the Settings icon on the left side of the Start Menu.

    The Settings icon appears as a white gear above the Power icon.

  3. In the Windows Settings window that appears, select Network & Internet.

    Network & Internet panel in Wireless Settings
  4. In the Change your network settings area, select Network and Sharing Center.

    Network and Sharing Center
  5. In the Network and Sharing Center window, select the highlighted name of your Wi-Fi network.

    Public Network button in Network and Sharing Center
  6. In the new pop-up window, select Wireless Properties.

    Security tab
  7. Select the Security tab and click the box in front of Show Characters to reveal the Wi-Fi password.

    Show characters in Network Properties dialog

Find Your Wi-Fi Password With Windows 8 and Windows 7

It's just as easy to find your Wi-Fi password on a slightly older version of Windows. If you're running Windows 8 or Windows 7, here's how to retrieve the password for your Wi-Fi network.

  1. Select your computer's Start Menu.

  2. In the Start Menu search bar, type Network and Sharing Center and press the Enter key when the selection is highlighted.

  3. In the Network and Sharing Center window that appears, select the name of your Wi-Fi network.

  4. In the new pop-up window, select Wireless Properties.

  5. Choose the Security tab and then select Show Characters to reveal the Wi-Fi password.

Find Your Wi-Fi Password on Mac

If you're a fan of Apple computers and are running macOS, it's just as easy to find your lost Wi-Fi password as it is on Windows. The process is effortless and requires you to access the Keychain Access app on your Mac.

  1. Bring up Spotlight on your Mac. This can be accomplished by holding down ⌘ on your keyboard and pressing the space bar. Next, type in Keychain Access and choose Enter to open the program.

    You can also open Spotlight by clicking the magnifying glass icon in the upper right corner of the screen.

    The spotlight search bar in Mac.
  2. In the window that appears, locate the Keychains list in the left panel and select System.

    System tab in Keychain Access on macOS
  3. In the Category list, also on the left side of the window, select Passwords.

    Passwords tab in Keychain Access on macOS
  4. On the right side of the window is a list of all the System passwords stored by your Mac. Locate the name of your Wi-Fi network and double-click it to open its settings.

  5. In the pop-up window that appears, click the Show password check box. You are prompted to enter your Mac username and password. Do so and then select Allow.

    Show password checkbox in macOS

    When entering your username and password, you must be a system administrator for your machine. If you're the only account on your Mac, you are the system administrator. Otherwise, enter the username and password of an administrator to see the password.

  6. Your Mac displays the password to your Wi-Fi network. Make a note of it for future usage.