What Does ‘Reset Network Settings’ Do?

Resetting network settings will delete some data from your device but not all

Choosing to reset network settings will erase all stored internet and networking-related data on your device, such as Wi-Fi names and passwords, network login information, and information on any paired hardware like headphones or speakers.

What Happens When You Reset Your Network Settings?

Most devices and services will let you manually delete specific information relating to individual internet connections and paired devices. For example, you can delete a single Wi-Fi network you no longer use without affecting any of your other Wi-Fi connections.

Choosing to reset network settings, on the other hand, will delete not just the login information for that Wi-Fi network but also all of the data for all of your other stored Wi-Fi connections, all of your Bluetooth device pairings, mobile network preferences, and stored VPN information.

Will I Lose Anything if I Reset Network Settings?

It’s important to emphasize a network settings reset is not the same thing as a factory reset.

Resetting your network settings clears out all of your internet, local network, and paired devices' data. A factory reset will delete pretty much everything on your device, reverting it to the state it was in when you unboxed it.

A network settings reset will not delete any files, folders, or other media stored on your device. Nor will it delete any web browser data, such as your browsing history or saved bookmarks.

Here’s what a network settings reset deletes:

  • Wi-Fi network names and passwords.
  • Bluetooth device connections and preferences.
  • VPN settings, local history, and preferences.
  • Cellular network preferences such as data management and 4G/5G settings.

Resetting network settings on an iPhone or Android smartphone will not delete any mobile carrier functionality or account information. The process resets any changes to mobile preferences you may have made since you activated your device.

Your ability to make phone calls, send texts, and access apps will not be affected by resetting your network settings.

For example, if you’ve recently turned your iPhone’s 5G off, you will likely have to do so again after the network settings reset is complete.

Do I Need to Reset Network Settings?

Choosing the Reset Network Settings option is just one of many potential ways to fix internet and connectivity bugs and glitches. You don’t need to perform a network settings reset, but it may help you if you’ve tried everything else and nothing seems to work.

A network settings reset only takes a few seconds. However, it may take you a few minutes to manually re-enter any deleted Wi-Fi login information and reconnect your Bluetooth devices afterward.

Performing a network settings reset on a Windows 10 PC can fix several internet problems. Resetting network preferences can also solve Wi-Fi problems on an iPad and get the internet working again on Android tablets and smartphones.

It’s a prevalent and generally very risk-free way of fixing many problems on numerous devices.

Alternatives to Resetting Network Settings

Before choosing to reset your network settings, it’s a good idea to try some fixes specific to the problem you’re experiencing. You may also want to try some of the following general strategies known to fix internet and network problems.

If resetting your network settings doesn’t work, and you feel like you’ve tried every other possible solution, you may need to perform a factory reset. It will delete pretty much everything from your device and is considered by most to be the last resort.

FAQ
  • If I reset network settings on an iPhone, what will this delete?

    All network settings are removed, including previously used networks and VPN settings. In addition, it clears your device name and resets to "iPhone."

  • What does choosing "reset network settings" do on an iPhone?

    Resetting network settings on an iPhone returns all your network settings to their default state, wiping out any previously set preferences and configurations. Any Wi-Fi, VPN, or cellular settings go back to the default. After the reset, you'll need to reconfigure your VPN and Wi-Fi settings, but you should automatically reconnect to your carrier.

  • If I reset network settings on an Android, what happens?

    Like resetting network settings on an iPhone, you'll remove any previous Wi-Fi and mobile data connection settings if you reset network settings on an Android. You'll also wipe out settings for connected Bluetooth devices. After the reset, you'll need to reconfigure and reconnect Wi-Fi and Bluetooth settings.

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