Mirror: Two Ways To Push Wlan Profiles To Your Windows Devices

This is a mirror of what used to be on the URL http://www.commsolutions.com/2012/09/two-ways-to-push-wlan-profiles-to-your-windows-devices/

I did not write the content and claim no praise for it.. The above URL appears to no longer be valid and the information doesn’t seem to exist on any other website other than archive.org. I am also posting a copy here should the archive.org version expire or be unavailable for some reason.

Content originally by Comm Solutions.

Today we’ll look at two ways besides Aruba’s QuickConnect or CloudPath to push WLAN profiles to your Windows devices….


Within a Windows Server and Active Directory domain, Group Policy allows you to push network profiles to domain-joined computers. You can do this by container or globally, by specifying wireless settings for clients running Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, as well as Server 2008 versions (although I don’t know of too many 2008 Servers running WLAN cards…)

If your domain controllers are Windows Server 2003/2003R2, the Active Directory schema has to have been extended to add the wireless GPO support, and you’re better off to run the GPO plugin on a Vista/Win7 machine to ensure that WPA2 support exists. Open the Microsoft Management Console (MMC), open the Group Policy snap-in, navigate to Computer Configuration>Windows Settings>Security Settings>Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) Policies, and begin your WLAN configuration.

If your domain controllers are Windows Server 2008/2008R2, use the Group Policy Management Console (GPMC) and navigate to Computer Configuration>Policies>Windows Settings>Security Settings>Wireless Network (IEEE 802.11) Policies, and create policies for XP and/or your Win7/Vista clients.


For non-domain machines, you can configure the wireless settings via the Netsh tool. This works for clients running Windows Vista/Win7 and perhaps Win8. You can run the commands locally on a machine to create the export, and on each new client machine locally or remotely via a share/UNC. You can manually type the import or script them in your batch files or login script.

The Netsh tool doesn’t let you directly configure a whole lot of anything but it lets you export an existing wireless profile (and this same process can be utilized to sync IAS/NPS servers, but that’s another story) and import it into other machines (and a similar process can be utilized to sync IAS/NPS server configurations, but that’s another tech tip. So we need to first export the configuration from a working client that has had a profile created for the desired ESSID/WLAN.

You can display the configured WLAN network profile(s) with the following command:

netsh wlan show all

Now you can export the desired profile, using the profile name as listed by the previous command:

netsh wlan export profile name=PROFILE_NAME

On other machines you can now import the profile using the filename of the XML file you exported from the source machine:

netsh wlan add profile filename="WLANPROFILE.xml"

Using remote netsh you can also import to a remote computer on the network:

netsh wlan add profile filename="WLANPROFILE.xml" –r COMPUTER_NAME -u DOMAINUSERNAME-p PASSWORD

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