When you connect to broadcasting or even to a hidden wireless network in Windows 10, the operating system creates a profile for that connection, in which it stores information like its SSID (the name of the network) and its security details (like the password and the encryption type it uses). But what if you decide you don't want your PC or device to remember a certain wireless connection? In such a case, you must delete its network profile and forget that Wi-Fi network. In this guide we will show you how to do that:
NOTE: The screenshots used in this article are from Windows 10 with Anniversary Update. Windows 10 Anniversary Update is available for free, for all Windows 10 users, as of August 2nd, 2016.
How to forget a wireless network in Windows 10, using the Settings app
In order to forget a wireless network in Windows 10, you can use the Settings app. To begin, open the Settings with a click or tap on its shortcut from the Start Menu , or by using any of the methods we showed in this tutorial: 9 Ways to open the Settings app in Windows 10.
Inside the Settings app, click or tap on Network & Internet.
The second option from the left of the Network & Internet window is called Wi-Fi. Click or tap on it.
Note that another way to get here, maybe a bit faster, would be for you to click or tap on the network icon from the system tray and then on the “Network settings” link from the bottom of the networks list.
Then, on the right side of the Wi-Fi settings window, look for the settings section called simply Wi-Fi. It should be the first one you see. In it, click or tap on “Manage known networks” .
The “Manage known networks” settings section opens and, in it, you will see the complete list with all the Wi-Fi networks your Windows 10 PC or device knows.
Click or tap on the wireless network that you want your Windows 10 PC or device to forget. This will make Windows 10 display two options: Properties and Forget. The Properties button will open a list with details about that Wi-Fi network. However, that’s not what we’re looking for. What we want is to delete the wireless network's stored profile and forget all its connection details, so what you must do is click or tap on Forget.
After you click or tap on the Forget button, Windows 10 immediately removes the wireless network from the list of known networks. If there are other networks you want your Windows 10 device to forget, repeat this procedure. Otherwise, you can simply close the Settings app.
How to forget a wireless network in Windows 10, using the Command Prompt
You can also remove a wireless network profile stored by Windows 10 with the help of Command Prompt. Start by launching the Command Prompt as administrator. A quick way to do that is to right click (or tap and hold) on the Start Menu icon from the bottom left corner of the screen, and then click or tap on the Command Prompt (Admin) shortcut from the power user menu you just opened.
Inside the Command Prompt window, type the following command: netsh wlan show profiles.
The above command will display all the wireless network profiles stored by Windows 10. The list can be long if you've used your laptop or tablet for more than a couple of weeks.
Identify the name of the wireless network profile you want removed, then type the following command to remove it: netsh wlan delete profile name="Wi-Fi network name".
As an example, we wanted to remove a wireless network profile named CNC5 , so we typed: netsh wlan delete profile name="CNC5". In just an instant, Windows 10 will tell you that that wireless network “Profile [...] is deleted”.
Feeling geeky yet? :)
How to forget all wireless networks in Windows 10
In some situations you may have to remove all the wireless network profiles stored in Windows 10. Luckily, you don't have to remove them one by one. That would be really awful.
All you have to do is to open Command Prompt as administrator, just like you did in the previous section of this guide, and then type this command: netsh wlan delete profile name=* i=*.
You will see Windows 10 deleting all profiles in no time.
NOTE: The netsh command has many other parameters besides the ones we shared with you in this article. If you want to learn more about it, we recommend you reading its documentation, here: Netsh Commands for Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN).
These are all the methods we know for forgetting known wireless networks from Windows 10 devices. We hope this guide will prove useful to you and, if you know of other ways to delete network profiles, don't hesitate to share them with us, using the comments form below. We promise to update this article, so that other people can also benefit from it.