Wifi Settings For Mac


Are you experiencing issues accessing the internet via Wi-Fi on your Mac? Or some crucial internet-dependent apps won't just work for no apparent reason? I bet you've checked the internet source (router) and everything looks fine. Other devices are able to access the internet via the same network but your Mac won't. Don't worry. Many have been there. Here's what you can do. Reset your device's Wi-Fi settings or network stack. That will revert your Mac's network configurations to default settings and resolve connection issues.

Unlike other operating systems (e.g. Windows) with straightforward network reset methods, things are different with macOS. This guide will walk you through the solutions and highlight different ways to troubleshoot Wi-Fi connectivity problems on a Mac by resetting its network settings.

Note: You should only reset Wi-Fi settings on Mac when other (basic but effective) troubleshooting methods prove abortive. In simpler words, resetting Mac's network settings should be your last resort to fix connectivity issues.

With the IP address in hand, you can set up your router: Open your Web browser and type your router’s IP address into the address bar. So, for most SMC routers, you type in your browser’s address bar to access the router’s Web page. For an ethernet connection, you'll see Ethernet, Network Settings, ISP, Internet, and Server. For a Wi-Fi connection, you'll see Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Settings, Network Settings, ISP, Internet, and Server.

Before you proceed, you should check out some brilliant (but hidden) tools that let you diagnose your wireless connection on Mac. These tools scan your Wi-Fi network, report connectivity problems, and recommend troubleshooting solutions accordingly. If you've run out of options and Wi-Fi still doesn't work correctly on your Mac (pun intended), get ready to reset its network settings using the methods below.

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Re-Add Wi-Fi Interface

This entails deleting your Mac's Wi-Fi and re-adding it to your device's network settings. That will also delete all previously-connected networks and other Wi-Fi configurations that might be causing network connection issues on your Mac.

Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select Network.

Step 2: Select Wi-Fi on the left-hand section and hit the minus (—) icon at the bottom-left corner.

That will immediately remove Wi-Fi from the list of connectivity options in the Network settings menu. Proceed to re-add Wi-Fi

Step 3: Tap the plus (+) icon at the bottom-left corner.

Wifi Settings For Mac

Step 4: Next, tap the Interface drop-down button to reveal other connectivity options.

Step 5: Select Wi-Fi from the list.

Step 6: Tap Create to add Wi-Fi to your Mac.

Step 7: Finally, tap Apply to save the changes made.

And that's it. You've successfully reset your Mac's Wi-Fi settings.

Delete Networking Configuration Files

Another way to reset Wi-Fi settings on Mac is to delete Wi-Fi-related configuration files. It's also pretty easy to achieve. Simply navigate to the SystemConfiguration folder and delete Property files (plist) holding the Macbook's network configuration settings. Follow the steps below to get it done.

Note: Before you proceed, make sure your Mac's Wi-Fi is turned off.

Step 1: Launch Finder and tap Go on the menu bar.

Step 2: Select 'Go to Folder' to launch the path navigation window.

Quick Tip: You can use the 'Shift + Command + G' keyboard shortcut to quickly launch the 'Go to Folder window.'

Step 3: Enter the path below into the dialog box and tap Go.

Step 4: Select the following properties files (plist) from the SystemConfiguration folder and move them to another folder or Trash Bin (you can always restore them later) on your Mac.

  • com.apple.airport.preferences.plist
  • com.apple.network.eapolclient.configuration.plist
  • com.apple.wifi.message-tracer.plist
  • NetworkInterfaces.plist
  • preferences.plist

You can move these (5) files to the bin if you want but backing them up in another folder is a much better and safer option. In the rare instance that your Mac's network configuration gets broken afterward, you can easily restore these files to fix the issue.

Step 5: Finally, restart your Mac.

Upon restart, macOS will create all those new plist files automatically after resetting your Mac's network settings.

Reset Network Stack or Wi-Fi Connectivity Settings on Mac

The 'TCP/IP stack' is colloquially referred to a Network stack on Mac. TCP/IP is an acronym that stands for Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. Fundamentally, these two protocols are responsible for connecting your device to the internet. If you're having internet connectivity issues on your Mac and no other troubleshooting solution worked, resetting the TCP/IP network stack to default settings might help. Here's how.

Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select Network.

Step 2: Select the affected network interface (Wi-Fi or Ethernet) and tap Advanced.

Step 3: Go to the TCP/IP tab.

If your printer was made in the last several years, it probably doesn't require a driver. Many printers and scanners use driverless technologies such as AirPrint or IPP Everywhere, which don't require additional drivers on your Mac. If the appropriate driver is available from Apple, your Mac will install it automatically.This list is no longer updated.Many vendors of printers and scanners have adopted driverless technologies such as AirPrint, and they are no longer providing drivers for new devices. But third-party drivers might still be available for older devices that do require a driver. Epson scanner drivers for mac. Always before connecting the device to your Mac for the first time.

Step 4: Tap the 'Renew DHCP License' button and tap OK when the process is completed.

DHCP stands for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. By renewing your Mac's DHCP Lease, you're simply instructing it to obtain new routing information or IP address from the DHCP server. When you do that, you've successfully reset your Mac's TCP/IP network stack.

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Stay Connected

As established earlier, resetting Wi-Fi settings will delete all previously-connected wireless networks on your Mac. If you can't remember the passwords for each network, you don't have to worry. There are numerous ways to check the password(s) of saved Wi-Fi networks on Mac. Read this comprehensive guide for more information.

Next up:Is Wi-Fi or Bluetooth not working on your Android or iOS device? Do you want to reset network settings? Read the article linked below to find out what will happen you do so.

The above article may contain affiliate links which help support Guiding Tech. However, it does not affect our editorial integrity. The content remains unbiased and authentic.Read NextWhat Happens When you Reset Network Settings on Android and iOSAlso SeeA Complete Guide to Fixing iPhone Not Connecting to Wi-Fi #macbook

Did You Know

A typical WiFi router transmits at frequencies of 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz.

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Use Wi-Fi

Learn how to connect to an open, secure, or hidden Wi-Fi network. You can also create a new Wi-Fi network.

Connect to a Wi-Fi network

Click in the menu bar, then choose a network. If Wi-Fi is off, click , then select Turn Wi-Fi On.*

If you connect to a public Wi-Fi network, a window might appear with terms and conditions you're asked to agree to before you can connect.

Connect to a secure Wi-Fi network

Secure Wi-Fi networks are password-protected and have by their names.

  1. Click in the menu bar. If Wi-Fi is off, click , then choose Turn Wi-Fi On.*
  2. Choose a network.
  3. Enter the password, then click Join. If you don't know the password to the Wi-Fi network, contact the network administrator.

Connect to a hidden network

  1. Click in the menu bar. If Wi-Fi is off, choose , then choose Turn Wi-Fi On.*
  2. Choose Join Other Network.
  3. Enter the network name. Make sure you enter the network name correctly.
  4. If the network is secure, choose the Security type, then enter the password.
  5. Click Join.

Learn what to do if you can't connect to a hidden network.

Create a Wi-Fi network

If you have Internet service at your location, you can connect an AirPort base station or a third-party router to your modem to create a Wi-Fi network. Use the setup guide for your AirPort base station, or check your third-party router's manual for help.

* If you don't see the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar, you can add it back. Choose Apple () menu > System Preferences, click Network, click Wi-Fi, then select 'Show Wi-Fi status in menu bar'.

Use Personal Hotspot

With most carrier plans, you can share the cellular data connection of your iPhone or iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular) with your Mac.

Learn how to set up Personal Hotspot.


Use Ethernet

To connect to the Internet over a wired connection, connect an Ethernet cable between your router or modem and the Ethernet port on your Mac.

Some Macs require an Ethernet adapter like the Belkin USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter, or the Apple Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter.

Learn more

Mac Connect To Wifi

  • Use recommended settings for Wi-Fi routers and access points.