5 ways to change the MAC address in Windows

Changing the MAC address of a network card is not something that most users have to do. However, some users may need to change the MAC address of their Windows computer to cope with different problems or network restrictions. To help you in such situations, we will share all the methods we know for changing the MAC address of a network card, in Windows:

Why change the MAC address in Windows?

The reasons derive from the use of the MAC address in network management. The MAC address identifies the device connected to a network and allows the network to track, restrict or allow access based on it. If you need to assign a static IP address, your router identifies and assigns the static IP address based on the MAC address. Changing the MAC address comes in handy when it is difficult or cumbersome to change the MAC address rules for your network. If you change your Windows computer, or only the network card, and the access to the internet from your ISP is restricted based on the MAC address, it is easy to change the MAC address to the old one and continue the access where you left off before the change.

Before you start the MAC address change, you need to have to know the value that you want to use for the MAC address. If you need help to find the MAC address values, read 6 Ways to find the MAC address of any network card, in Windows.

Keep in mind that when you change the MAC address in Windows, the new address becomes active only after you restart your network card (you can disable and enable it) or you restart your Windows computer.

1. Change the MAC address using Device Manager

Start the Device Manager. In the Device Manager window, click the arrow next to Network adapters to open up the list. Right-click or long tap on the adapter for the network card that you want to change. Choose Properties from the menu that opens up.

Open the Properties for your network adapter

In the Properties window that pops up, select the Advanced tab. Select Network Address in the list displayed under Property, and type the new MAC address value on the right side. When you finish, press the OK button.

Set a new MAC address for your network adapter

The new MAC address value is stored in Windows, and it is ready to be used.

2. Change the MAC address using Control Panel

Open Control Panel. In the Control Panel window, search for "network connections" and choose "View network connections" in the search results.

Search and open network connections in Control Panel

Right-click or long tap on the network connection you want to change. Choose Properties in the menu that opens up.

Open Properties for your network connection

In the Properties window, press the Configure button.

Open Configure for the network connection

In the new Properties window that pops up, select the Advanced tab. Select Network Address in the list displayed under Property, and type the new MAC address value on the right side. When you finish, press the OK button.

Set a new MAC address for a network adapter

The new MAC address value is stored in Windows, and it is ready to be used.

3. Change the MAC address using third-party software

We recommend using Technitium MAC Address Changer which is a freeware utility that allows the change of the MAC address. After you install the app, open it. In the Technitium MAC Address Changer window, select the network connection in the top list. Type in the new MAC address in the Change MAC Address field and press the Change now button.

Set a new MAC address using Technitium MAC Address Changer

4. Change the MAC address using the Registry Editor

Start the Registry Editor as administrator. Navigate on the left side to the following path:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}

Underneath this node, you see listed all the network interfaces for your computer. Click on each one and check the information on the right panel to identify the one you need to change. The DriverDesc field is the most likely one to help you pinpoint the right network card. Right-click or long tap on the network card node in the left panel and choose New and then String Value in the menu that pops up.

Add new string for a network adapter in Registry Editor

On the right panel, type in NetworkAddress as the name of the newly added string value. Double click or double tap to open NetworkAddress for editing.

Name NetworkAddress a string for the MAC address in Registry Editor

In the Edit String window, type in the new MAC address that you want to apply to your network card.

Set a new MAC address in Registry Editor

5. Change the MAC address using the Command Prompt or PowerShell

Once we have learned the method of changing the MAC address using the Registry Editor, we can now speed up this change using the reg command in the Command Prompt or PowerShell. If you need to switch repeatedly between different MAC addresses on your Windows computer, the command line we describe in this section can be stored in a script file and run to speed up the procedure. Open Command Prompt or PowerShell as administrator, depending on which app you prefer to use.

Before you execute the command in the screenshot below, you need to replace two strings that we have underlined. The first string is associated with the network card that you want to change in Windows Registry. Review the previous section to find out how to get this number from the Registry Editor. The second string is the new MAC address that you want to be assigned to the network card.

Change the MAC address from CMD

Below you find the command in plain text so that you can copy and paste it. Do not forget to edit and change the values that apply to your Windows computer and the specific network card for which you want to change the MAC address: _reg add HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}\_0004 /v NetworkAddress /d 002622D90EFC /f

Why did you change the MAC address?

Changing the MAC address is a rare intervention. The security behind the MAC address is quite poor because as you have seen, it is easy to change it to any value you want. Keep in mind, though, that you cannot have two devices with the same MAC address active at the same time in a network. Before closing this tutorial, tell us why you want to change your MAC address? We are curious to know the situations in which our readers need to perform this operation. Comment below and let's talk about this subject.